Montgomery County Executive Sidney Kramer has named Robert S. Caulk director of the county's Department of Social Services.

Caulk, whose appointment was confirmed by the County Council this week, succeeds Harriet A. Herrman, who left to serve as an adviser to Montgomery College President Robert Parilla.

In the $70,000-a-year post, Caulk will oversee more than 400 employes and an annual budget of $39.7 million.

For the past 15 years, Caulk, 43, has served in executive positions in the health and social service fields. Most recently, Caulk served as director of research and development at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Maryland. He also has worked as the director of social and aging services for Multnomah County, Ore., as the executive director of the Western Oregon Health Systems Agency in Eugene, and as director of the Department of Health and Human Service in San Diego.

Herrman served as director of the department for 14 years.

The council this week also confirmed Kramer's appointment of Mary Ellen (Meg) Riesett to the new Office of Planning Policy. Her salary is $57,543. Riesett, 47, will oversee a $600,000 budget and advise Kramer on planning issues.

During the past 18 months, Riesett served as manager of planning policies for the county Department of Environmental Protection. Earlier she was director of the Wheaton Community Service Center.

Northwood Renovation The council, ending yet another debate with the school board, has given final approval to a plan by Kramer to spend $5.5 million to renovate Northwood High School and use it for students displaced by construction projects at their schools.