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Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security Elaine Duke delivers remarks at the Office of the Citizenship and Immigration Services Ombudsman Seventh Annual Conference at the National Archives and Records Administration in Washington, D.C., Dec. 7, 2017. (Official DHS photo by Jetta Disco.)

DHS Deputy Secretary Elaine Duke stepping down in April



WASHINGTON (Sinclair Broadcast Group) — The second-highest ranking official at the Department of Homeland Security, Elaine Duke, will be retiring from government service in April, according to a statement from DHS.

Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen made the announcement on Friday, thanking Deputy Secretary Duke for her service.

"Since taking office, she has been instrumental in helping the Department address emerging threats and in preparing for, responding to, and recovering from the 2017 hurricane season," Nielsen said. "The Department greatly benefited from her expert knowledge and understanding of DHS issues – particularly with respect to procurement, personnel and management."

The statement did not indicate the reason for Duke's retirement.

Duke temporarily served as the acting head of the department from July through December last year after John Kelly stepped aside from the post to serve as White House chief of staff. She became deputy secretary after Nielsen was confirmed by the Senate.

Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Elaine Duke and Federal Emergency Management Agency Administrator Brock Long provide a situation update during a hurricane briefing at the National Response Coordination Center in Washington, D.C., Aug. 26, 2017. (Official DHS photo by Jetta Disco.)

Duke was reportedly prepared to resign last year, according to a November report from the Washington Post. Duke reportedly became frustrated with the Trump administration after the White House pressured her department to expel Hondurans living in the United States under temporary protected status.

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