State Senator Dale Righter (R-Mattoon) today announced he will not be seeking re-election to the 55th District seat he has held since 2003.

"Words can not adequately describe the immeasurable blessing that serving the citizens of east-central and southeastern Illinois has always been," said Righter in a written statement. "Each day, whether in the Capitol or back home in the district, is a privilege. But after much thought and prayer, I've decided it's time for this chapter of my public service to conclude."

Righter served five years in the Illinois House before being elected to the Senate in 2002. He intends to serve out the remainder of his term, which expires in January of 2021.

"My heartfelt thanks to the voters who have placed their collective trust in me and the values I have brought to the Capitol each legislative session," Righter concluded. "I will always cherish the opportunity with which I have been graced."

Righter, a native of Mattoon, has two sons, Jonathan, a lieutenant in the United States Army, and Benjamin, who will soon begin his final year as an Aerospace Engineering student at Iowa State University.