By DANIEL SUDDEATH
NEW ALBANY — The two largest political parties in Floyd County elected leadership Saturday, as Republicans welcomed back a familiar face while Democrats selected a new chairman.
Former U.S. Congressional aide Adam Dickey was elected as Floyd County Democratic Party Chairman, as he will replace the retiring John Wilcox.
Dave Matthews was tabbed for his third term as chairman by the Floyd County Republican Party. Matthews and Dickey will lead their respective parties for the next four years locally.
Dickey — who was an aide under U.S. Rep. Baron Hill — served as treasurer of the Floyd County Democratic Central Committee from 2005 to 2009.
“I am excited and honored to serve alongside my fellow central committee officers as we continue the critical work of improving our community and forging a strong, vibrant Democratic Party in Floyd County,” Dickey stated in a news release following Saturday’s election of officers by the organization.
During the caucus, Stacy Deck was re-elected as vice chair, Sarah Bonifer was elected as secretary and Shane Gibson was elected as treasurer for the next four years.
“As Democrats, we are committed to electing fair-minded leaders who support a responsible agenda to move our country, state and nation forward,” Dickey said. “We will welcome those with new ideas who would like to be involved in our work for the first time, and also recognize the valuable asset we have in our experienced Democratic supporters.”
Matthews’ wife, Cheryl, was re-elected as Floyd County Republican Party vice chair. Former New Albany mayoral candidate D.M. Bagshaw was elected secretary and Shawn Carruthers was chosen as treasurer for the GOP organization.
Matthews said several candidates have declared or expressed interest in running for office in 2014, as sheriff, auditor, and Floyd County Council are some of the positions that will be on the ballot locally.
“I still think the average voter is fairly intelligent, and they can know enough about candidates to know which one is the better candidate,” Matthews said Monday. “We plan on providing them with the better candidate for each of the positions.”
The party is energized locally by the scheduled upcoming appearance of Gov. Mike Pence during the Floyd County Republican Party’s Lincoln Day Dinner on March 14, he continued.
Pence is slated to speak during the event, which will be held at Beach Mold & Tool in New Albany. Those interested in attending can contact Matthews at 812-923-8951.