Hawkins (pictured) oversees the state's five health and human services agencies, which have combined budgets of $25 billion a year and more than 50,000 employees.

Texas Health and Human Services Executive Commissioner Albert Hawkins today notified Governor Rick Perry that he will retire, saying it had been an honor to have served with those who share a passion for public service.

Hawkins oversees the state's five health and human services agencies, which have combined budgets of $25 billion a year and more than 50,000 employees. He was appointed to the role in 2003.

Hawkins served as an aide to President George W. Bush and Secretary to the Cabinet from January 2001 through December 2002. In this senior White House staff position, Hawkins served as the liaison between the White House and the President's Cabinet.

From 1995 to 2000, Hawkins was state budget director for then-Texas Governor George W. Bush. From 1978 through 1994, he worked at the Texas Legislative Budget Board.

Hawkins is the recipient of numerous awards including the Bob Bullock Award for Outstanding Public Stewardship, 2004; Honorary Doctorate of Public Service, University of North Texas Health Science Center, 2004; Distinguished Alumnus, LBJ School of Public Affairs, 2001; Outstanding Texas Leader, John Ben Shepherd Forum, 1998; and Texas State Administrator of the Year 1998.

Wayne Hanson  |  Senior Executive Editor, Center For Digital Government