Meet the Director

W. Richard "Rick" Staton

Rick Staton was born and raised in Mullens, West Virginia. He received his Bachelor of Arts Degree from West Virginia University in December, 1980, Magna Cum Laude. Rick then attended the West Virginia University College of Law, where he was awarded his Juris Doctor degree in 1984. He was an associate editor of the West Virginia Law Review and the Journal of College and University Law. He authored a published article for the Journal on the topic of Eligibility of High School Students for Professional Sports. He was also Chairman of the Judicial Board for the WVU Student Administration. 

He was invited to join a practice with long-time attorney and former Prosecutor D. Grove Moler in 1984, forming the law firm of Moler & Staton in Mullens.  This firm continued until Staton became Prosecuting Attorney in 2009.  He had also served as a part-time Assistant Prosecuting Attorney from 1999 until his election.

Rick was elected to the West Virginia House of Delegates in 1988. He served in the House of Delegates until 2006. He served as Vice Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee and Vice Chairman of the Select Committee on Redistricting. Rick was appointed Chairman of the Committee on the Judiciary in 1995. He served in this position until 2001, when House Speaker Bob Kiss named Delegate Staton as Majority Leader of the House of Delegates. Staton served as Majority Leader until he left office at the end of 2006.

Staton was named as Deputy Cabinet Secretary for the Department of Military Affairs and Public Safety by Governor Earl Ray Tomblin in March, 2013.  His responsibilities included implementation of the state’s Medicaid for corrections populations and juvenile justice reform.  Staton was named Director of the West Virginia Division of Justice and Community Services by Governor Tomblin on July 1, 2014.

Rick was a member of the Delegation to the Peoples Republic of China, American Council of Young Political Leaders in 1994, and to Japan in 2006. Staton was selected to participate in the National Program for Emerging Political Leaders at the Darden School of Business, University of Virginia. He has received training in public sector mediation from Harvard University. He is the Vice Chairman of the West Virginia Youth In Government Committee, which sponsors a model Legislature and Supreme Court for high school students. Rick is also a member of the Board of Directors of the Ohio-West Virginia Youth Leadership Association, which provides programs for emerging young leaders and disadvantaged youth.

Governor Earl Ray Tomblin appointed Staton to the Governor’s Advisory Council on Substance Abuse.  He also served as a member of the Judicial Reinvestment Commission, and Chairman of the West Virginia Courthouse Facilities Improvement Authority.

Staton is admitted to practice law before all state courts in West Virginia, the United States District Court for the Southern District of West Virginia, the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals and the Supreme Court of the United States.

Most importantly, Rick is the proud father of three children:  Carrie Michelle, who is a Redevelopment Collaborative Coordinator for the Northern West Virginia Brownfields Assistance Center, Blair Louise, who is a grade school guidance counselor in Summerville, South Carolina, and Bryce Richard, a student at West Virginia University, who is currently serving with the Air National Guard.