"Mr. Portra has demonstrated his knowledge and qualifications during the years he has served as a magistrate judge," said Gov. Rounds on the appointment. "He will continue to utilize his experience to serve the citizens of the Fifth Judicial Circuit as a circuit court judge."
Judge Portra is a 1991 graduate of Moorhead State University in Minnesota, and a 1994 graduate of The University of South Dakota School of Law.
Following law school, Portra worked as an Assistant Attorney General for the South Dakota Attorney General's Office in Pierre. In 1996, Portra joined the Richardson Law Firm in Aberdeen.
In 1999, Portra was appointed as a magistrate judge for the Fifth Judicial Circuit in South Dakota, and holds that position today. The Fifth Circuit serves Brown, Campbell, Day, Edmonds, Faulk, Marshall, McPherson, Roberts, Spink and Walworth counties.
Portra will continue to reside in Aberdeen.
wife, Jamie, son Jake, 13, and daughter Andie, 11.
Portra replaces Judge Larry Lovrien who resigned as a Circuit Court judge. Portra will assume his new duties as soon as he is sworn into office.