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Rafter to run for probate judge seat
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Rick Rafter, a partner of a local law firm Ratchford and Rafter, LLP in Springfield has announced his intention to run for the position of Effingham County Probate Judge.  

Rafter and his wife Debbie have been married for 37 years and have lived in Clyo since 1987, when they moved here from Brandon, Fla., with their three children Kelly, Stephen and Heather.

Kelly is married to Scott Durrer, an Apache helicopter pilot currently with the 3rd Infantry Division stationed in Iraq, and lives in Effingham County with her husband and two children, Madison and Warren.

Stephen, a graduate of Georgia Tech, is currently working on his PhD in astro-physics at Georgia State University.

Heather and her husband Brian Feinstein live in San Jose, Calif., where she will receive her masters in library science in May.

Rafter served in the U.S. Navy on board a nuclear powered submarine from 1969-1973.

Rafter has worked for several Fortune 500 companies over his career in various technical and management positions. His last position was as the deputy general manager of Intermarine USA, a Savannah shipyard that contracted with the U.S. Navy to build eight fiberglass mine hunters.

Rafter received his Associate of Arts degree from St. Petersburg Junior College in December 1980 and a Bachelor of Science in business management from the University of South Florida in April 1987.

He graduated in May 2002 from John Marshall Law School in Atlanta and has been enjoying a second career as a local attorney since May 2003. Rafter is a member of the Georgia Bar Association and the local Effingham Bar. He practices in Effingham County Superior Court, State Court, Magistrate Court and Probate Court, as well as in the same courts in the surrounding counties.

He has been admitted to practice law as a member to the Court of Appeals of the State of Georgia and the Supreme Court of the State of Georgia.

Locally, Rafter has served on the board of directors for The United Way and is currently serving as a board member on the Effingham Hospital Authority. He is also a member of the St. Boniface Catholic Church in Springfield.