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Key Kan. abortion rights figure retiring in spring

OVERLAND PARK, Kan. (AP) -- The president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri plans to retire this spring after years at the center of the abortion debate.

Peter Brownlie announced his plans Thursday, without setting a specific date for his departure.

He's been the top administrator of the Planned Parenthood chapter since August 1999.

During his tenure, his organization challenged anti-abortion laws enacted by Kansas legislators and was the target of a lengthy criminal case in Johnson County that was dismissed last year.

Kansas legislators are still pondering additional changes, and Planned Parenthood still has federal lawsuits pending over anti-abortion laws enacted in 2011 and 2013.

But Brownlie said in an interview before his announcement that he believes the organization's most difficult legal and legislative battles are behind it.