Prothonotary Joseph Evers, who oversees the record-keeping of the city's civil cases, "is a really good administrator," Castille said. Evers' post is an appointed one.
Of Miller's job, Castille said there is "no need for an elected official" to fill that post.
With Miller's retirement, the question looms as to whether the clerk's elected office will be abolished.
Zack Stalberg, president and chief executive of the Committee of Seventy, yesterday called on Nutter and City Council to move swiftly to abolish it. The watchdog group had recommended eliminating this and other row offices in a March 2009 report.
The Pennsylvania Intergovernmental Cooperation Authority, the state agency that oversees the city budget, last year also called for the elimination of the city's row offices.
Eliminating the clerk's position could be done through a simple City Council vote.
At the news conference, city leaders wouldn't comment when asked about past criticisms of Miller.
Nutter deflected reporters' questions on the issue, saying that out of "respect" for Miller, he wanted to focus on recognizing her service. Questions on what will happen to her office are for "another day, another time, another place," he said.
Common Pleas President Judge Pamela Pryor Dembe, a frequent critic of Miller's who last year painted a frightening scenario by contending that inaccurate record-keeping by Miller's office was a "catastrophe waiting to happen," stood before reporters yesterday and praised Miller by calling her a "real pioneer, a real trailblazer for women and African-Americans in politics and in government."
Miller, a Democratic ward leader who has held the clerk's position since 1992, on Thursday sent a brief resignation letter to Nutter. Yesterday, she told reporters that she decided that her time in office "has run its course." She refused to answer reporters' queries about criticisms she has faced.
Nutter said that Miller's daughter Robin Jones, 41, the first deputy in the clerk's office, "will continue to oversee operations" and that she will do so in partnership with Everett Gillison, the city's deputy mayor for public safety.
Miller, who makes more than $117,000 annually, has signed up for the city's Deferred Retirement Option Plan. It was not clear yesterday how her DROP payment would be affected by her early retirement.
One employee in the Clerk of Quarter Sessions office said yesterday that they were told that no one would lose his job. Most people were "indifferent" to the news of Miller's retirement, said the staffer, who spoke on condition of anonymity. "It's not like she's going to be missed," this person said. "I've never seen her do anything but come in and have people tell her what's going on."