Santa Rosa's gang prevention manager recently resigned from her post after just five months on the job.

Bethany Facendini, 39, stepped down Feb. 15.

City officials declined to discuss her departure and she could not be reached for comment.

In September, officials expressed confidence that Facendini, previously a supervising naturalist at the East Bay Regional Park District, was the best person to lead the program.

"I think it's an exceptional fit for her," city manager Jennifer Phillips said at the time.

In September, Phillips cited Facendini's passion for social justice and youth as reasons she would excel in the post, which paid $91,440.

Privately, though, some were puzzled by the selection given Facendini's lack of gang prevention management experience.

Mayor Scott Bartley noted that gang prevention is a niche profession. Only 13 cities in the state have gang prevention programs like Santa Rosa's, he said.

Phillips said Thursday the city's programs for at-risk youth will be unaffected. Until a decision is made about the position, Phillips said she and other staff will do their best to perform as much of the work as they can.