Story By David Pena
If elected mayor, Christi Ricker’s focus is to unite Rincon and continue to ensure the success and safety of its residents.
Mayoral candidate Christi Shores Ricker is definitely a woman with a plan. “My goal as mayor is to become the driving force who helps Rincon grow in the right direction while still protecting its citizens and their future.” She says that her experience as a City Council-member has not only prepared her for the position, but has partly been her impetus to run. That is, along with some divine intervention. “My friend, a former council member, suggested that I run for City Council after attending our Sunday School Christmas party. My Sunday School teacher also agreed that I would be an asset as council-member. ” After initially dismissing the idea, Ricker discussed it with her mother, who prompted her to pray over it. She then conferred with her pastor, and ultimately Ricker had a change of heart about her political future. “I’m now happy to be serving my fourth year on City Council, she says, “and I hope everyone is pleased with my work thus far.”
During her tenure, the Athletic Department hired two full-time employees, and all of its programs have grown, notably adding cheerleading, lacrosse and basketball to the city’s offerings. “We’ve also built up our baseball fields and constructed a concession stand at Macomber Park. In addition, we are set to have our first movie night in the park, and we’ve had the circus here for the past two years.” Ricker adds that while she’s pleased with the work she’s accomplished, there’s definitely room for improvement. “I really feel that we could’ve done more, and as mayor I hope to continue to improve and grow these programs and cultural activities.”
One of Ricker’s concerns when she became a council-member was the city’s business district, an area she’d like to continue to focus on if elected. “I feel that there’s room for improvement in the business district, especially in the area of beautification. I suggested that we hire a marketing company to help us with the vacant properties.” While Ricker shares the sentiments of most Rincon citizens that more restaurants should be added in the area, especially Chic-fil-A, she also feels that the city’s focus should center around local revenue. “I think we should help the local businesses that are already here,” she says. “It’s in the best interest of our community as a whole, in my opinion.”
Ricker has resided in Effingham County for the past twenty years along with her husband Brian and their two children, Alexis and Alaina. As proprietors of Clean Duct, LLC since 2008, Ricker says the couple have been vested in the city’s business community for nearly a decade. “Although I grew up in Richmond Hill, my husband and I chose to live here because we both have family in the area, and it would be a great place to raise our own family.” The couple have been active members in Rincon First Baptist Church, where Ricker has served as an outreach leader, care group coordinator, and a founding member of a mission group.
Ricker says that she’s well-equipped to handle the position, despite the misconception about it. “Most people feel that (being elected) mayor is a step up from being a council-member; however, in a ‘weak mayoral’ system like we have, that’s not the case.” So it begs the question, “Why the bid for mayor of Rincon?” Ricker says that the position is integral to the cohesiveness of the city and its government. “The mayor should be the one to bring us all together and the person who makes sure that all the pertinent information has been brought forward. All of the council needs to be included in the critical decision-making process, and at times during my service this has not been the case. I’m ready to be that person who helps move Rincon forward.”