Republican group announces executive committee, volunteer award winner

Tony Hernandez presents Michelle Manke with the inaugural Fourth Congressional District Republican District Committee’s “Candidate’s Award” during the group’s March 23 convention at Jimmy’s in Vadnais Heights. (Photo courtesy of Fourth Congressional District GOP)

Tony Hernandez presents Michelle Manke with the inaugural Fourth Congressional District Republican District Committee’s “Candidate’s Award” during the group’s March 23 convention at Jimmy’s in Vadnais Heights. (Photo courtesy of Fourth Congressional District GOP)

ST. PAUL — The Fourth Congressional District committee of the Minnesota Republican Party Thursday announced its 2013 Executive Committee and its first-ever “Candidates’ Award.”

The committee was elected and the award presented at the March 23 Fourth District GOP convention at Jimmy’s in Vadnais Heights. The slate of committee members, representing the many Fourth District communities, includes Chairman James Carson, Deputy Chairwoman Amy WIlliams, State Executive Pat Anderson, Secretary Torleif Sorenson, Vice Chairs Mitch Berg, Michelle Manke, Elizabeth Roff, Dallas Pierson, John Krenik and Arielle Taylor

“I look forward to working with this great team in strengthening each aspect of CD4”, Carson said. “Their dedication and talents make them ideal leaders for our Executive Committee for 2013-14.”

In addition to officer elections, the district’s 2012 U.S. House candidate, Tony Hernandez, presented a new award — the “Candidate’s Award,” to Manke. The bi-annual award was initiated by Hernandez in the wake of his unsuccessful election bid against Democratic Fourth District Rep. Betty McCollum.

“I noticed during the course of my 2012 campaign that so much attention and energy is given to a small amount of negative activity within the district while the countless hours of devotion, hard work, and sacrifice by activists and volunteers goes largely unnoticed,” Hernandez said.

Hernandez presented Manke with a trophy, and gave the district a special plaque with Manke’s name and space for names for the next 24 years.

“Michelle was an integral part of multiple campaigns dedicating her photography talent, graphic design skills, and leadership on campaign committees. In the wake of a very disappointing election year for Republicans, Michelle did not quit. She picked up the ball immediately and began working and planning to find ways to win more elections for Republicans in 2014 and beyond.”

The Candidates Award will be given every two years at the spring convention following an election year to the person who best exemplifies the spirit, heart and soul of Fourth Congressional District Republicans, Hernandez said. The award is unique because the honoree is chosen by all the Republican-endorsed candidates in the district.

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