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Updated: State GOP switches leaders

Anita Kumar

Two months after a hugely successful election, we hear the Republican Party of Virginia is changing leadership.

As incoming governor Bob McDonnell looks to put his own stamp on the party, executive director Allison Coccia is leaving. Dave Rexrode, deputy campaign manager for Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob McDonnell, will take her place.

Rexrode is currently serving as the governor-elect's director of community outreach. He will head up the street to party headquarters Friday, and be introduced to the State Central Committee via conference call Sunday and to the staff Monday.

Update: We reached party chairman Pat Mullins late this afternoon. He tells us that Phil Cox, McDonnell's former campaign manager and transition director recommended Rexrode. Mullins said that was enough of an endorsement for him. He offered him the job.

Rexrode, 31, has worked for John McCain and George Bush's presidential campaigns, Congressman Bob Goodlatte and various House and Senate races. And yes, his wife is Goodlatte's spokeswoman. (The couple lives between Richmond and Washington).

Coccia had told Mullins after the election that she wanted to leave. She did not return a phone call today.

She came to Virginia in 2008 after working as the executive director of the New York Republican State Committee and the political director of Republican Party of Pennsylvania.

Last week, we told you that communications director Tim Murtaugh was leaving to work as a spokesman for the Republican Governors Association.

Kim Jorns, the party's director of finance, also is heading north to become the executive director of the Maryland Republican party.

Earlier this month at the State Central Committee meeting, the Democratic Party announced the departure of its executive director Leigh Anne Collier. No word yet on who will replace her.

By Anita Kumar  |  December 30, 2009; 12:27 PM ET
Categories:  Anita Kumar , Robert F. McDonnell  
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If you read Blue Virginia, it looks like Elisabeth Pearson will be next at DPVA.

Good for Governor-Elect McDonnell to put his people in place, its his right.

Posted by: notjoeabbey | December 30, 2009 1:11 PM | Report abuse

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