CHECOTAH — Carman Rainbolt loves nothing more than being an attorney.
He possibly loves coaching Little League baseball as much, if not more. He proudly displays the coaching trophies he's collected in seven years.
"I'm coaching a 10-under team this year for the last time as they'll play in 12-under next year," he said. "We're four-time league champions and we'll start practice at the end of January. I have a good group of players. We love baseball at my house."
Rainbolt is just as comfortable in a courtroom as he is in a dugout or coaching box. He's been a lawyer since 2008 and became the city of Checotah attorney in July 2012.
And all of that will be something he's going to miss as he leaves his jobs in Checotah behind to become the assistant district attorney for Okmulgee and McIntosh counties. He starts his new job on Jan. 14.
"Being an attorney is extremely rewarding," he said. "While I hate to leave, I'm doing is something I think the Lord led me to do. I'm looking forward to it."
Rainbolt said he will be handling criminal cases and represent in civil cases. Working with individuals on their cases is something he said he's going to miss.
"The only thing that's changing that I'll be doing a different aspect of the law," he said. "I'm really going to my clients and being able to do a will or work on guardianship for somebody who needs it. When you're an attorney in a small town and work with people, you either go to church with or see them at Little League baseball. You know everybody.
"That's going to be the hardest about leaving the city. Being a city attorney is the hardest thing I've done, but I love it."
Mayor Daniel Tarkington said it's going to be hard to see Rainbolt leave.
"He's an outstanding guy," Tarkington said. "I told him, 'You're like my right-hand man and whoever replaces him will have big shoes to fill."
Rainbolt will continue to live in Checotah with his wife Laura and three sons Jim, Mason and Deacon. However, he's said he's going to have to give up his practice to avoid any conflict of interest. He will finish any pending civil cases and refer criminal cases to other lawyers. He will be an assistant to Carol Iski.
"Whatever (Carol) wants me to do, I'll do it," Rainbolt said.
Rainbolt has been a lawyer since 2008. He first started working for Mark Grober in Muskogee and moved to the town where he was born, raised and his mother was a school teacher for 43 years in 2010.
"I've loved coming home," he said. "This has been a great place to grow up and a great place to raise my children. I wouldn't change anything."
MEET CARMAN RAINBOLT
EDUCATION: Checotah High School, Oklahoma State University, Oklahoma City University Law School.
PROFESSION: Lawyer since 2008 and city attorney in Checotah since July 8, 2012. Starting as assistant district attorney for Okmulgee-McIntosh counties on Jan. 14.
FAMILY: Wife Laura, three sons Jim, Mason and Deacon.
RELIGIOUS AFFILIATION: First Baptist Church, Checotah.
HOBBIES: Coaching Little League baseball.