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June 22, 2017

Longest-serving Superior Court Judge to retire June 30

Skagit County’s longest serving Superior Court Judge, Michael E. Rickert, will retire June 30 after more than 24 years of service. An open house celebration in his honor will begin at 2:30 p.m. Friday, June 30, in courtroom two of the Skagit County Courthouse.

Rickert began his tenure with Skagit County in 1986, when he was elected to serve as Prosecutor. In 1993, he was elected to serve as a Superior Court Judge in Department Two. He is a highly regarded Judge known for his colorful quips from the bench.

One of Rickert’s greatest achievements during his time with Superior Court was the development and launch of the first Drug Court program in 1997. This therapeutic court has served nearly 520 people countywide; many credit the program for changing and saving their lives.

Rickert was also instrumental in bringing local law enforcement agencies together to create the first-ever Skagit County Drug Task Force, which continues today.

The Skagit County native graduated from Burlington High School in 1970 and received his undergraduate degree from Washington State University. Rickert served five years in the U. S. Army, attaining the rank of Captain. Following his service, Rickert received his Juris Doctor degree in 1983 from the University of Puget Sound Law School. Prior to his time with Skagit County, he joined the late Gilbert Mullen to form Mullen and Rickert Law in Mount Vernon.