Briggs and his wife, Laura, have three daughters, Ruby Leigh, Carson Mae and Dixie Jo; and a son, Charles Otis. They both grew up in Texas. He is a graduate of the University of Texas at Arlington where he earned his bachelor of arts degree in history. He subsequently received a master's degree in journalism and public relations at Central Missouri State University, and was awarded his law degree from Texas Tech University School of Law in Lubbock.
In addition to employment in the news departments at Taylor Daily Press in Taylor, Texas, and the Clinton Daily Democrat in Clinton, Missouri, Briggs has taught computer assisted reporting and research and desk-top publishing at Central State Missouri State University.
Briggs also served as assistant editor of The National Oil & Lube News.
He was given the nickname "Smokey" by his father, Olin Briggs, a former city editor of the Dallas Morning News now employed by CNN. Following in his father's footsteps, Briggs enlisted in the Marines when he graduated high school and later served in Texas National Guard. In both branches Briggs primarily served in the infantry.
"Newspapers are in my blood," Briggs said. "When I went to law school it was my intention to return to the business, and I'm glad to be back." He and Laura also own The Monahans News, where he is publisher.
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