Over the past weekend, the ferry system's interim chief, George Capacci, withdrew from consideration to fill the position permanently.
And Transportation Secretary Lynn Peterson said in a memo to ferry employees that she has decided not to hire former Pierce County Executive John Ladenburg, the only remaining candidate left from the selection process.
"While John Ladenburg has extensive experience as an elected official managing large government agencies, I have decided to begin a new recruitment process," Peterson said in the memo. "I am grateful to both candidates for participating in this process."
Peterson says Capacci will remain in the interim role until the position of assistant transportation secretary for the ferry system is permanently filled. He will then return to his previous role as deputy chief for operations and construction, she said.
The department had hoped to name a new ferry chief by June 20 to replace David Moseley who resigned in April after six years in the top job.
Transportation Department spokesman Lars Erickson says it will undertake a nationwide search for a new ferries chief.