Alex, a conservative Republican, is running for State Representative in Missouri's 134th District. He lives in Springfield's Parkcrest neighborhood with his high school sweetheart and wife of six years Ellen, their son Mitchell, and their 100 lb. Great Pyrenees Teddy. The Rileys are excited to welcome their second baby in early December 2020. Alex was born and raised in Springfield and has lived in the 134th District for twenty years. Other than a short time away for law school, he has lived in Springfield his entire life.
Alex's parents taught him the values of faith, family, patriotism, and hard work from the beginning. His dad, a registered nurse and former farmer, put in many hours of overtime to provide for the family and this work ethic made a lasting impression on Alex. At an early age, Alex began a small business mowing lawns to earn some extra money. He and his younger siblings were homeschooled from kindergarten all the way through high school by his mom, a homemaker and former nurse.
Growing up, Alex was active in Royal Rangers, a faith-based program similar to Boy Scouts. He earned the Royal Ranger Gold Medal of Achievement, the highest award achievable and, in 2008, was named the National Royal Ranger of the Year. He ultimately graduated as one of the most decorated Rangers in the history of the program.
Alex worked hard in high school, both in his studies and in his extracurricular activities, in pursuit of his ultimate goal of attending the United States Naval Academy. However, in the spring of 2009, a few months after his 17th birthday, he was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma - a form of cancer. Because of this diagnosis, he could not meet the Naval Academy's physical requirements for admission. Though this diagnosis ended his Academy aspirations, Alex knew God had other plans for him. After nearly a year of chemotherapy and radiation treatments, he learned he was cancer free shortly before his 18th birthday. This experience only reinforced Alex’s appreciation for life and his belief that all life is sacred.
While Alex's cancer diagnosis changed his college and career plans, he did not let that deter him. Instead, he began looking for an alternative to traditional four-year universities. He had concerns over the cost and debt load so many students experience and was interested in an expedited process so he could enter the workforce faster. To accomplish this, Alex began testing out of college courses during his senior year of high school. Within a year, he had tested out of three quarters of the requirements. He finished his remaining courses through Thomas Edison State University and graduated at age 19 with a B.A. in Political Science and a 4.0 GPA. He worked his way through college and achieved his goal of graduating with no student loan debt.
Following college, Alex took a job as a paralegal at a local law firm. It was there he developed a passion for defending businesses and medical providers in our court system. Some attorneys at the firm encouraged Alex to go to law school. Ellen supported the idea and encouraged him to go too. So he took the LSAT, received multiple scholarship offers, and accepted the best one from Southern Illinois University School of Law in Carbondale, Illinois.
Alex made the most of his time in law school where he was a strong advocate for conservative principles. He served as the Chief Articles Editor of the Southern Illinois University Law Journal and wrote and published two articles advocating for free speech and religious liberties. He was also a teaching assistant, a research assistant, and he worked in the school’s Elder Law Clinic providing free legal assistance to seniors. Alex received multiple awards while in law school and graduated in 2016, fourth in his class, Summa Cum Laude.
The summer after graduating, Alex passed the Missouri Bar Exam. He then came back home to Springfield and took a job as an attorney with a local law firm defending businesses, medical providers, and individuals when they were sued. Alex is currently an attorney with McAfee & Taft in Springfield and has successfully defended businesses of all shapes and sizes - from Fortune 500 companies to small local businesses - in courtrooms across Missouri.
Alex and his family attend James River Church. During their free time, they enjoy camping, exploring the Ozarks countryside, and cheering on the Kansas City Chiefs.