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Woman leads Jefferson County GOP, first in 28 years

by Joe Arnold


Posted on January 13, 2010 at 11:42 PM

You have to wait until the last paragraph of the Jefferson County Republican Party news release to hear from its newly elected "chairman," Republican activist Shellie May, described as the first woman to lead the local party in 28 years.

"Now, more than ever, Jefferson County needs strong Republicans and a strong Republican party," May says.

Yet, most of the release centers on the outgoing chairman, Jerry T. Miller, who simultaneously entered the primary race for the Louisville Metro Council's 19th district seat, being vacated by Hal Heiner's mayoral run.

News Release

Louisville, KY - Fulfilling his four-month commitment as Jefferson County Republican Party Chairman, Jerry T. Miller resigned tonight upon the election of long-time Republican activist Shellie May as the new Chairman.  Ms. May is the first woman to hold that position in the last 28 years.
Last September, Miller was asked by the Executive Committee of the Jefferson County Republican Party to become its Chairman following the unexpected resignation of Brad Cummings.  "When I learned last September that my Councilman, Hal Heiner, would be running for Mayor, it was my intention to immediately announce my candidacy for his 19th District Metro Council seat", Miller said.  "When asked to defer my personal plans until January, I was glad to do so, as it was clear that it was most important to get the Jefferson County Republican Party better positioned to win elections in 2010."
Miller appointed a search committee chaired by Councilman Ken Fleming to identify the best person to fill the remainder of the four-year term of JCRP Executive Committee Chair.  Following their recommendation, Shellie May was elected the new JCRP Chairman at Tuesday night's meeting. 
Miller focused on building party unity during his term and initiated a search for a new headquarters location for the JCRP. Under his leadership, JCRP made 2,000 calls last December on behalf of Jimmy Higdon's successful bid for State Senate. 
The newly elected May will bring a wealth of experience to the Republican Party, including active participation in state and county races for over two decades. Chairwoman May stated "Now, more than ever, Jefferson County needs strong Republicans and a strong Republican party."