GEORGIA – A native of Cartersville has been named interim director of the Georgia Department of Family and Children Services by Governor Brian Kemp.

Candice Broce was appointed by Kemp on Friday and her appointment took effect immediately. She replaces Tom Rawlings as department head, who unexpectedly resigned Friday after the Atlanta Journal-Constitution described a “furious verbal argument” the previous day with a private security officer working with a film crew. Rawlings declined to comment to the Atlanta newspaper.

Broce most recently served as Kemp’s Chief Operating Officer. She was also its communications director and its vice chairman. Prior to that, Broce headed communications and served as legal advisor on elections and legislative matters for the Georgia Secretary of State.

“Candice Broce has held numerous important functions in my administration and I appreciate her willingness to lead a critical agency of the state government on an interim basis,” said Kemp in a statement on Friday. “I know she will bring dedication, integrity and leadership to the Family and Children’s Services Department so that the agency can provide the highest quality care and basic services to Georgians in need.”

Broce holds a bachelor’s degree in management from Georgia Tech and a law degree from Georgia State. She lives in White with her husband Jason and their two sons Beau and Jack.