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Settling in as probate judge

By By Lydia Grimes
Emilie Mims somehow knew she would be in the place she is occupying as she begins a new career.
Mims, who recently began her appointment as Escambia County probate judge, is the daughter of a former longtime mayor of Atmore.
Mims will serve the unexpired term of retiring judge Rachel Agerton. Mims first began thinking about the probate judge position in 2003, when former judge Devon Wiggins was in office. But Mims’ husband, John, had just died, and she did not want to make any major changes at the time.
Mims, the former director of the Atmore Area Chamber of Commerce, was appointed to the new position by Gov. Bob Riley.
Mims is busy learning the ropes of her new position.
Mims was born and raised in Atmore and graduated from Escambia County High School in 1966. A tomboy growing up, she was a good student and a cheerleader. She was raised with her two sisters, Celine and Clarice.
Mims married her high school sweetheart, John Mims, in 1967. She attended Birmingham Southern and Samford University after her marriage, while her husband was in pharmacy school in Birmingham.
Life changed for the couple when John was drafted into the military. Mims left college to become a military wife.
Although this was in the middle of the Vietnam War, John was never sent into battle. He was sent to San Juan, Puerto Rico, where he served for two years. Mims accompanied him there and then to Fort Bragg. He was released from the military in 1972 and they moved back to Atmore, along with their son, Jason, who was born in 1971. She gave birth to a daughter, Rachael, in 1972.
Mims worked as a stained glass artist from 1976-91, first from her home and then from a studio in downtown Atmore.
In addition to that creative work, Mims has been quite involved with her community. She served as executive director of the Atmore Area Chamber of Commerce for 17 years, until taking her new position.
While at the Chamber of Commerce, she has created a heritage event, Williams Station Day, and spearheaded many beautification and community enhancing projects.
Among her affiliations are Escambia County Extension Service Advisory Board, 2007 to present; Friends of Education of Escambia County, Inc. Charter Founder 2007; HIPPY Exploratory Grant Committee 2007; Vestry, Trinity Episcopal Church 2004-06; Escambia County Alabama Community Hospitals Board of Directors, 2001 to present; Escambia County Alabama County Healthcare Authority Board of Directors, 2001 to present, treasurer in 2007; Escambia County Children’s Policy Council, 2000 to present; Alabama Preservation Alliance Board of Directors, 1999-2002; Atmore Rotary Club; City of Atmore Strategic Planning Committee, 2001-05; Coalition for a Healthier Escambia County, 1995-present; Leadership Atmore Steering Committee, 1993-present; Escambia County Department of Human Resources Board of Directors, 1992-98; and Jefferson Davis Community College Advisory Board.
Mims said she is excited about her new venture at the probate office.