Just off the heels of the Guilford County Republican Party Convention, the brand new leadership of the local party is planning some major changes that include taking the meetings on the road, stronger fundraising efforts and a greater organization of the party at the precinct level.
That’s the word from brand new Guilford County Republican Party Executive Director Sebastian King who spoke this week about the party’s plans in 2019 and beyond.
On Saturday, March 9, the Guilford County Republican Party held its annual convention at the Jamestown Campus of Guilford Technical Community College, where the party elected the new executive leadership team as well as the delegates that the organization will send to the state convention.
With the infusion of new blood, there’s currently a good deal of optimism and energy in the party.
New Guilford County Republican Chairman David Gleeson, who was elected to that post at the convention, said that the energy level in the organization is very high right now.
“I was encouraged by the turnout and energy of our county party for the convention,” he said. “Our volunteers are truly energized and ready to make a difference in the 2019 and 2020 elections.”
Gleeson said he’s looking forward to leading the party and helping it elect quality candidates, and he added that he plans to take the skills he acquired in his private sector work – and in his community service – and use them to lead the party in a positive direction. He moved to North Carolina about 20 years ago to take a CEO position and he’s now retired and lives in Jamestown. Throughout his career and his retirement, he’s been involved in organizations like the Greensboro Rotary and the Greensboro Symphony Orchestra Guild.
King, who was appointed as the new executive director, is clearly eager to advance the party. Two days after being appointed, his voice mail was full and he said he’d been very busy ever since the convention.
King said that, going forward, there’s going to be a much tighter level of organization when it comes to precinct leaders and district chairs. He said that, in the past, sometimes precincts tended to get a little disorganized when there’s no election going on – but King said that’s one thing that’s now changing.
“Now we’ll have more levels of accountability and more engagement as well,” he said.
King added that another change will be that, rather than always holding meetings in the Republican Party headquarters, the local party is going to conduct its meetings in different locations around the county.
King also said the party is going to be much more active in seeking donations from businesses and others.
“We’re really going to push for fundraising,” King said.
He added that one point of emphasis in the future will be keeping the Republican Guilford County commissioners in their seats. He said the elections of the last few years have shown that the Republican majority on that board can rest tenuously on a few hundred votes.
Other Guilford County Republican Party officials elected on March 9 were Chris Meadows, now 1st vice chair; Alissa Batts, 2nd vice chair, and Paul Daniels, who became 3rd vice chair. Also, Michelle Bardsley was elected secretary; Steve Golimowski, was elected treasurer, and Martha Miller was elected assistant treasurer.
“With our new team, we have the ability to truly get a positive Republican message in the community,” King said.
He added that the party stands for opportunity, access to a quality education and the ability of people to achieve their dreams.
Former Guilford County Republican Party Executive Director George McClellan said this week that King will do a great job as the director. He said he knew King well and he said that King always worked hard and was a very fine young man.