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Rep. Rob Wittman

Rep. Rob Wittman, R-1st, is endorsing former state delegate Richard Anderson for chairman of the Republican Party of Virginia. 

Virginia Republicans will elect a state party chairman for a four-year term in May 2020 at the Republican Quadrennial State Convention on May 1 and 2 in Lynchburg.

So far, current RPV Chairman Jack Wilson is vying for reelection against Anderson and Michael Schoelwer, chairman of the Lancaster County GOP Committee. Lancaster is a county of about 11,000 people on Virginia’s Northern Neck. Schoelwer announced his candidacy Wednesday, Jan. 15.

“Rich has devoted his entire life to military and public service and is the right leader at the right time to again lead Virginia Republicans to electoral victories,” Wittman said in his announcement, released Sunday, Jan. 12. 

Wittman is one of four Republican members of Congress from Virginia. 

Anderson, a retired Air Force colonel and resident of Woodbridge, served in the House of Delegates for four terms, from 2010 until 2017. He lost his seat to Del. Hala Ayala, D-51st, and then unsuccessfully challenged her again in 2019.

As delegate, Anderson chaired the House Science and Technology Committee and the General Assembly Military and Veterans Caucus. He also sat as a member of the House Appropriations Committee, House Finance Committee, House General Laws Committee and House Transportation Committee. 

“Rich has a lifetime of executive leadership experience and critical skill sets that are crucial to rebuilding and growing the Republican Party of Virginia through sustained fundraising, invigorated voter registration program, and by unifying Virginia Republicans from border to border,” Wittman said. 

Anderson served in the Air Force from 1979 to 2009. He holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from Virginia Tech and a master’s degree in public administration from Webster University.

Anderson’s wife, Ruth Anderson, served one term as Occoquan District Supervisor on the Prince William Board of County Supervisors from 2015 to 2019, and is the former chair of the Potomac and Rappahannock Transportation Commission.

“If elected to lead the Republican Party of Virginia, I will focus 16 to 18 hours every day, seven days a week, on swinging the pendulum as heavily and swiftly as possible back to the party of Lincoln,” Anderson said in a press release released last Tuesday. 

“We will have but one goal: The sure election of Republican candidates and the swift defeat of Democrat candidates.” 

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