I watched my father, Mark Ricks, serve his community and state, both as State Senator and as Lieutenant Governor which influenced my decision to step up and serve my friends and neighbors too.
I grew up on a farm in Madison County. Much of who I am comes from lessons I learned on the family farm. My first date with my wife, Melissa, was a tractor ride while I worked in the fields. We married on Leap Day in 1984. We have five children and four grandchildren.
After serving a Polish-speaking LDS mission in Australia, I graduated from Ricks College and later BYU-Idaho. At 25, I left the farm and opened the first PC computer store in Rexburg in 1987.
I loved the idea of being an entrepreneur and helping businesses and people. I dealt with the pressures of hiring employees, managing payroll, and paying taxes. I taught myself everything I needed to know about computers to better serve my customers.
In 2000, I sold the store and took a job at BYU-Idaho managing all the PCs in the computer labs. I provided technical assistance for students with disabilities.
The technology helped the blind, the deaf, and people with other disabilities access materials they need for school. After teaching a few classes myself, I also gained a new understanding and respect for teachers and students.
As a side business, I flip houses and managed to weather the real estate bubble. It can take over a thousand hours to complete one house. That’s a lot of late nights and weekends working on the side, but I love making a fixer-upper look attractive again. Hard work doesn’t scare me. In my free time, I enjoy fishing, hunting, boating, and spending time with my family.
For the past two years, I served in the Idaho House of Representatives for District 34. It was a humbling experience for me, and I enjoyed serving my constituents with my fellow representatives. I watched Senator Pro Temp Brent Hill give many years of his life to serving his fellow man, so when he decided it was his time to retire I was prompted to try and follow in his footsteps. I am grateful for the opportunity to be representing District 34 in the Idaho Senate.
With my wide range of experience, I will continue to represent the good people of District 34 well.