ATLANTA (AP) — The outgoing majority leader of the Georgia Senate is resigning from the chamber to take a public broadcasting post, Senate officials said Tuesday.
Sen. Chip Rogers, a Republican from Woodstock, will step down Wednesday, ending a decade-long tenure that saw him become one of the state's most powerful politicians before recently losing his grip on power.
According to a statement from the Senate press office, Rogers will join Georgia Public Broadcasting in January. His duties will include leading a radio show on Georgia economics and business. The show is scheduled to debut in the spring.
"I am honored by this incredible opportunity," Rogers said in a statement. "Much of my career has been spent in broadcasting and helping my constituents. This melds both my passions."
The senator did not respond to telephone or email messages. The terms of his new position were not immediately available.
Rogers has been in the Senate since 2002 and recently won re-election after a tough primary challenge.
He got considerable attention during the last term after leading a majority that stripped Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle of control in the chamber. But the intraparty struggles never settled down, leaving the Senate in disarray while House Speaker David Ralston emerged as the clear GOP powerbroker within the General Assembly.
After winning another term, Rogers last month dropped out of the race to continue as majority leader. The post went to Ronnie Chance of Tyrone.
Cagle, meanwhile, is expected to regain some, if not most of, his authority when Senate Republicans gather in the coming weeks to write operating rules for the chamber.
Gov. Nathan Deal and Cagle had friendly words for Rogers on Tuesday, avoiding any reference to recent Senate squabbles.
"As a former state senator myself, I know how serving as a part-time legislator becomes full-time work that keeps you away from your family too often," Deal said. "We appreciate his continued service to the state."
Cagle said, "Senator Rogers was a passionate advocate for his constituents and the causes closest to his heart."