Richard Riggs - Candidate for Oregon State LegislatureState: Oregon
Candidacy: State Legislature (HD-20)
Richard Riggs is running for State Representative in Oregon’s 20th district. Richard’s family has a tradition of Naval service; his grandfather served in WWII as a Seabee, and two of his uncles served in Vietnam. While growing up in Oakridge, Oregon, Richard saw his community devastated when its mills were closed, and he decided to enlist in the Navy at age 17.
Serving as a Machinist Mate, Richard quickly worked his way up through the enlisted ranks and was encouraged to apply for the Navy’s enlisted commissioning program, to which he was accepted in 1989. Richard earned a B.S. in Mathematics at Oregon State University, attended Officer Candidate School in Newport, R.I., and was commissioned as a Surface Warfare Officer in 1992. Following his commissioning as a Surface Warfare Officer Richard served in USS Arkansas (CGN 41), USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69), and USS O’Kane (DDG 77). While serving in O’Kane, Richard participated in both Operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom.
Since returning from Iraq, Richard has shared his experiences with a wide variety of audiences, writing an essay titled “Where are the Weapons of Mass Destruction,” which was published in the March 2004 issue of the U.S. Naval Institute’s Proceedings magazine and quoted in the New York Times bestselling book, Fiasco: The American Military Adventure in Iraq. As an outspoken Iraq War veteran, Richard has also been a featured speaker at several political and civic organizations and prepared a sermon for the Veteran’s Day service for his church.
Richard and his wife Shannon met when he was stationed in New York, and have been married for more than 18 years. After retiring from the Navy in 2006, they returned to Oregon to raise their two children. Richard has since completed his first two years at Willamette University’s College of Law in Salem, Oregon, and in 2007 he was elected to the Chemeketa Community College board where he represents more than 60,000 residents of his home county. Richard hopes to build on his more than two decades of leadership and service in Oregon’s State Legislature.