Laurens County Republican Party Holds County Convention to Elect New Leadership  

April 5, 2023

The Laurens County Republican Party held their bi-annual county convention on Saturday, April 1, 2023, at the Ridge in Laurens.  The purpose of the convention is to elect county party leaders, pass resolutions and elect delegates to represent the local party at the South Carolina Republican Party Convention to be held in May.

The convention opened with prayer, the Pledge of Allegiance and a beautiful rendition of the National Anthem performed live by the Rankin sisters.

US Congressman Jeff Duncan


After a short welcome from current chairman Luke Rankin, Congressman Jeff Duncan addressed the convention and then Lt. Governor Pamela Evette sent her greetings via video.

Delegates to the convention elected three officers: chairman, first vice chairman and the executive committeeman (EC). Luke Rankin was unopposed and re-elected to serve a second term as chairman. Shellie Carles was unopposed and elected to serve as the first vice chairman. Rick Shealy (incumbent) and Sheldon Kazmarski ran for EC, and Shealy was re-elected carrying 65% of the vote.

“This year’s County Convention was a huge success. Delegates overwhelmingly elected a slate of leaders who will serve our party well for the next two years,” said Chairman Luke Rankin. “Not only are we growing, but our base is more engaged and excited than ever before. From welcoming top presidential candidates to our county very soon to electing more Republicans to local offices, we have many exciting opportunities for Republicans to join our movement and get involved.”

“I’ve been involved with the Laurens County Republican Party for nearly 30 years,” said Senator Danny Verdin. “Never before have I seen this much energy! Great things are happening in the Laurens County Party and I encourage those interested to get involved and make a difference at the local level.”

Laurens County is allotted 13 delegate slots to the state convention. The results of the election of delegates to state and alternates are as follows:

State Delegates                                                    Alternates

Luke Rankin                                                                Morris Madden

Stewart Jones                                                              Mark Madden

Brenda Stewart                                                           Susanna Rankin

Rick Shealy                                                                  Valerie Jones

Shellie Carles                                                               Deborah Rankin

Nick Babb                                                                     James Donnelly

Priscilla Rankin                                                           Peter Rankin

Jim Yates                                                                       Sheldon Kazmarski

Steven Davis                                                                 Kelly Jones

Jerome Parsons                                                           Eric Neal

Matthew Brownlee                                                      Shaunna Donnelly

Justin Lane                                                                   James Lang

Samuel Rodekohr                                                        Ronnie Blackwell

If you are interested in getting involved or signing up to receive updates about meetings and events, contact Luke Rankin at [email protected].

Click on the images in the gallery below from the county convention.