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Gov. Haley names director of troubled DSS

COLUMBIA (AP) — Gov. Nikki Haley has named the director of The Girls Center at Clemson University as her choice to lead South Carolina’s troubled Department of Social Services.

Haley’s announcement Monday of Susan Alford comes six months after the departure of former Director Lillian Koller, who resigned amid bipartisan calls for her ousting.

A Senate panel has been investigating the agency’s problems since January. An audit released in October found the agency fails to properly protect abused and neglected children.

Haley had refused for months to fire Koller as she dismissed the criticism as election-year politics. Koller resigned a day before the Senate was expected to vote on a no-confidence resolution on her leadership.

Alford takes over from acting director Amber Gillum. The nomination still faces confirmation by the Senate.

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