Ararat Rural City Council chief executive Andrew Evans has retired after seven years in the top role.
The decision was announced at a special council meeting on Tuesday night.
A council media release said Mr Evans was stepping down to care for his wife, who is sick.
Ararat Mayor Paul Hooper said the council would plan to find a replacement for Mr Evans in the coming weeks.
“We are still working our way through that process, but Andrew is with us until the end of the first week in July,” he said.
“We will put together a strategy on how we move forward.”
Mr Evans joined the council in 2011 following a stint at Naracoorte Lucindale Council.
He has worked in local government in New South Wales, as well as within the private sector.
Cr Hooper said Mr Evans’ advocacy work spoke for itself.
“I think what we have achieved here speaks for itself in terms of outcomes,” he said.
“The latest is a new train timetable that Andrew has been working on with the state government.
“I found him very good to work with.
“Often we don't agree, but he is a person that what you see is what you get and I very much respect that in a senior manager.”
He said Mr Evans would leave a lasting legacy on the city of Ararat.
"Council thanks Mr Evans for his contribution to both the council and the community and we wish him and Karen well in retirement,” Cr Hooper said.
“He led asset management, reporting and finances in particular – there is a lot of stuff the average punter would not see.”
Mr Evans’ retirement follows the signing of a disputed enterprising bargaining agreement between the council and staff.
The union representing staff initially held a vote of no confidence in Mr Evans before backing down and signing the agreement.