Riley taps native to study Australia’s political system

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Gov. Bob Riley has appointed Andalusia native Jeff Rabren as a political exchange program delegate to Australia.

Rabren, who currently serves as the governor’s director of legislative affairs, has joined six other political and policy leaders from across the United States to study Australia’s political system, engage in dialogues on international issues and forge professional relationship with political leaders in Australia.

The program is arranged by the American Council of Young Political Leaders and funded by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

Rabren, who lives in Birmingham, will join the other delegates, all between the ages of 25-40, in Washington for briefings from the State Department and Australian experts before traveling to Melbourne, Australia.

Rabren is married to the former Mandy Morris, daughter of Wayne and Vicky Morris of Childersburg. He is the son of Bill and Frances Rabren of Andalusia.

“I’m honored to be selected for this international political exchange program,” Rabren said.  “This is an excellent opportunity to help strengthen ties between Alabama and Australia and interact with key national and local leaders.”

Australia is Alabama’s 15th largest export market.

-Special to the Star-News