The Garfield County GOP will be looking to have our fall Roundup on October 10. This is intended to be a fun time for all ages. More information will be provided later, but “save the date”
Republican Joyce Rankin named to the State Board of Education
Joyce Rankin, a former teacher and principal from Carbondale, was selected Saturday to fill the vacant 3rd District seat on the State Board of Education.
She won the appointment after a 13-member Republican Party vacancy committee made the choice from among eight candidates.
Rankin will take the seat vacated by SBE chair Marcia Neal of Grand Junction, who resigned earlier this summer, citing board dysfunction and personal health issues (see story).
She has served recently as an aide to her husband, Republican Rep. Bob Rankin, who’s a member of the Joint Budget Committee. Last session Rep. Rankin was among backers of an unsuccessful attempt to launch a legislative study of the school finance system.
Two other board members have close legislative ties. Republican Debora Scheffel of Parker is the sister of Senate Majority Leader Mark Scheffel. Republican member Steve Durham of Colorado Springs is a lobbyist and a former member of both the House and Senate.
The board, which gained two new members at the start of the year, has had some tense discussions over the last several months on issues such as testing, parent exam opt outs, a state student health survey and student data privacy. Some board members feel that the body’s previous patterns of decorum and procedure have frayed this year. (Learn more about the State Board’s tumultuous spring in this archive of Chalkbeat stories.)
The board will meet Wednesday and will elect a new chair. Most observers expect Durham to be elected chair. The body has a 4-3 GOP majority.
A key job for the board will be selection of a new education commissioner to replace Robert Hammond, who retired earlier this year. The board selected a search firm just last week to find candidates (see story).
State law requires that a vacant elected office be filled by a committee made up of members of the same political party as the person who resigned. Rankin will have to run for the seat in the November 2016 general election and has indicated she will do so.
The vacant seat drew wide interest from candidates across the sprawling, 29-county district, which covers much of the Western Slope plus Pueblo and the San Luis Valley.
The other candidates included:
- Jake Aubert, principal of Holy Family Catholic High School in Grand Junction
- Andy Burns of Durango, director of admissions at Fort Lewis College and a member of the Durango school board
- Roger Good, a businessman who serves on the Steamboat Springs school board
- Debbie Rose, a Beulah businesswoman who formerly served on the Pueblo 70 school board
- Barbara Ann Smith, a retired teacher from Grand Junction who lost to Neal in the 2014 primary for the State Board seat
- Anita Stapleton, an anti-Common Core activist from Pueblo
- Bryan Whiting of Garfield County, a recently retired high school teacher who worked for 33 years at Glenwood Springs High School
Michael Lobato, a San Luis Valley rancher and member of the Center School board, applied for the post but withdrew before the vacancy committee met.
PITKIN POLITICS – Colorado Congressman Mike Coffman
Please Join Colorado Congressman Mike Coffman and 2014 Asian Coalition Director Aurora Ogg On Monday, August 17 In Aspen
We’re excited to announce that Congressman Mike Coffman, from Colorado’s Sixth Congressional District, will be in Aspen on Monday, August 17, from 5:30 to 7:00 pm, at the home of Nancy Dunlap. Congressman Coffman was elected to a third term in 2014 despite redistricting in 2011 designed to make it very hard for a Republican to win in his District, which is diverse with a large minority population.
Like the former Marine he is, Mike set about winning the campaign with great determination against a very strong opponent who had served as the Democratic Speaker of the Colorado House. He perfected his Spanish language skills and was able to debate his opponent, a fluent Spanish speaker, in that language. He reached out to every community in his District, including those that do not typically support Republican candidates. In the end, Mike won the election by nine percentage points, with substantial support from minority voters, an unheard of result in a District that was deemed Democrat from the outset.
Key to Mike’s success were people like Aurora Ogg, 2014 RNC Asian Coalition Regional Director, who campaigned hard in Asian communities on Mike’s behalf. Aurora will talk about the campaign’s efforts to reach into communities that do not traditionally support Republican candidates and why those efforts were successful.
In 2016, the Democratic Party will again try to unseat Mike Coffman, Chair of the Subcommittee on Investigations and Oversight of the House Veterans Affairs Committee and a member of the Armed Services Committee. Another strong opponent has announced her run for the seat and the race is once again rated a “Toss Up.” Mike needs your support and we hope you will join us on August 17 to help him and to participate in a very interesting conversation about Republicans winning in so-called “unwinnable” Districts.
Garfield County Republicans are looking for volunteers for this weekend’s parade in Parachute. Contact Dave Merritt for details.
Many thanks for those who attended the Central Committee Meeting. A special thanks to our State Jon Warnick for putting together such an informative and educational presentation.
Our leadership for the next two years is:
Chair – Dave Merritt
Vice Chairs Jon Warnick
Secretary Kimberly Gamba
Treasurer Carrie Couey
District Captains Jim Kenney (District 1)
Bob Spuhler (District 2)
Carol Nofizger (District 3)
Gwen Porter (District 4)
Shirley Starr (District 5)
Jeff Cheney (District 5)
Janet Samson (District 6)
Ron Roesener (District 7)
Garfield County GOP Chair
Glenwood Springs, CO
970 379 7064