COLUMBIA, S.C. — Gov. Nikki Haley’s chief of staff is leaving the governor’s office to head up her possible re-election bid.

Tim Pearson is returning to campaign mode. Haley spokesman Rob Godfrey said Monday that Pearson would make the move Oct. 15.

The Republican governor insists she hasn’t decided whether to run for re-election in 2014. Godfrey says Haley likely won’t decide until after the 2013 legislative session ends next summer.

But Pearson will handle Haley’s political operation in anticipation of her bid for a second term.

The 30-year-old Pearson managed Haley’s successful come-from-behind campaign in 2010 and has been her chief of staff since her inauguration. He makes nearly $129,000.

Haley says Pearson brought a tireless dedication to his role as chief of staff, and she’s glad he won’t be going far.