AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Texas Department of Criminal Justice Executive Director Brad Livingston says he’s retiring this summer after guiding the state’s prison system for nearly a dozen years, making him one of the longest-tenured directors in the agency’s history.

Livingston made the announcement Friday at a Board of Criminal Justice meeting in Austin. The nine-member panel, named by the governor, is responsible for finding his successor.

The 53-year-old Livingston’s retirement is effective in August.

He came to the prison system in October 1997 as Financial Services Division deputy director after working in the governor’s budget and planning office. He was named chief financial officer in June 2001, became interim executive director in November 2004 and took over officially in July 2005.

The agency has more than 38,000 employees and nearly 147,000 inmates.