Roberta Fogg resigned this week after 13 years as Belfast City Clerk to take a job as the city clerk of Auburn — a step she said would afford her the chance to grow both personally and professionally.

Her last day on the job is July 16. On July 6, the City Council appointed Deputy Clerk Robin Reynolds to serve as interim clerk while the city looks to fill the position.

In her tenure with the city of Belfast, Fogg was aggressively attentive to details and following proper procedure, and she chalked this up to what she saw as her role of enforcing the city ordinance, or at least knowing it well enough to keep the Council informed.

If she came off as hard at times, Fogg said, it was always about being fair.

“Regardless of who is standing in front of me, I treat everyone the same way. And I want everyone to know that they’ll be treated the same way,” she said.

Behind the service counter at City Hall — what City Manager Joe Slocum has several times referred to as the “air traffic control center” of the city — Fogg said she received questions on just about every topic imaginable, including state and county government, the local area and businesses.

She had to know the ins and outs of city government, but she also had to know enough about the local area to be able to refer a person to someone better informed than herself.

“I kind of think of us as your neighbors,” she said. “Come talk to us at City Hall and we’ll try our best to help you. We may not succeed, but we’ll do our best.”

Fogg started her career in municipal service as the manager of Littleton, a town of roughly 950 residents in Aroostook County. She was 23 years old, and rumor was that she was the youngest town manager in the state.

Though her title was town manager, her duties in Littleton ranged widely.

“You name it, I did it — town manager, treasurer, clerk, register of voters. It was a small town,” said Fogg. “The only job I didn’t do was road commissioner.”

She paused a moment, then added, “And dog catcher.”

Fogg started with the city of Belfast in an appointed role when City Clerk Teresa Crosby stepped down, and was hired shortly after.

It was 1997. MBNA had come to town a year earlier — Fogg worked for the credit card company briefly when she first came to Belfast — and Wal-Mart would approach the city a year later, causing a rift in the community that Fogg said had shrunk some in recent years.

Mayor Walter Ash served on the City Council that hired Fogg, and he recalled being worried the city would not be able to fill Crosby’s shoes. But Ash said Fogg had done well.

“She kept us out of trouble,” he said. “She’s quite knowledgeable, and it’s going to be hard to replace her … I think Auburn realized how capable she was, because they hired her out from under us.”

Over the years, Fogg, who describes her temperament as that of “a very civic-minded community activist,” has tried to remain impartial amid the swirl of city politics.

“It’s been extremely hard in the last 13 years not to stand up and speak my mind as a citizen,” she said. “But people blur the lines; they see you as both.”

On two occasions, she did voice an opinion publicly — once over a school budget, and later on a zoning issue that would have affected her property. On both occasions she spoke as a private citizen, though once, she said, she was annoyed to find that in a newspaper write-up she was referred to as “City Clerk Roberta Fogg.”

Fogg said if she hadn’t lived in Belfast, she wouldn’t have had this problem. And though she doesn’t know where she will take up residence when she leaves the city later this month, she’s looking outside the city limits of Auburn.

Asked if there were other issues she had felt strongly about over the years, Fogg bit her tongue. There were, she said, but they were “best left unsaid.”

Fogg has two sons, the youngest of whom just graduated from high school. In recent years, both lived with their father in Aroostook County — “Young boys need to be with their dad,” she said, wistfully. The move south will put her closer to some of her extended family in Raymond.

When she heads to Auburn next month, Fogg will be working with a population nearly four times the size of Belfast. But as she is quick to point out, the move from Littleton 13 years ago represented an even larger increase — on the order of six times.

Auburn has been reducing the ranks of its employees, and Fogg said she anticipated having fewer supporting staff there than she currently had in Belfast, but she appeared ready to take it in stride.

“It’s going to be a great personal and professional challenge, and I’m really looking forward to it,” she said.

As to whether she would be working directly with the 24,000 residents of Auburn from behind the service desk at City Hall, she said she hoped so.

“You can’t get a sense of the community unless you wait on its citizens, hear their needs and work on their issues,” she said.

Referring to Fogg’s departure as “very exciting news for her; very challenging news for us,” Slocum said he and other city staff members had been working feverishly to ensure that the day-to-day clerk services wouldn’t skip a beat.

Slocum said he planned to advertise the clerk’s position regionally. Experience will be a valuable consideration for new applicants, but also knowledge of Maine and the Belfast area. High organizational skills are a must, he said.

The main issue, looking ahead, is the November elections, he said.