A milestone quietly occurred here last week within the ranks of the Mississippi Republican Party when long-time Republican activist Cindy Phillips announced that she was stepping down as the Mississippi National Republican Committeewoman, effective January 15, 2010. Cindy was first elected National Committeewoman in May, 2000, and has served effectively and with distinction since that time.
I had the pleasure and privilege, as her County Republican Chairman, to second Cindy’s nomination to be the National Committeewoman at the 2000 Republican State Convention; and I remember it well. Senators Thad Cochran and Trent Lott, as well as Congressmen Roger Wicker and Chip Pickering, had all just made speeches and were sitting on the front row, with approximately 1000 Republicans in attendance.
State Senator Bill Hawks (later the United States Undersecretary of Agriculture) made the nominating speech for Cindy and talked about her longtime selfless service to the Party and her wise counsel to him when he ran for Lieutenant Governor of Mississippi. In my remarks, I spoke of how she had found time to help me find Republican poll workers in three remote Madison County precincts which had to be selected only a few days before the State Convention, while at the same time she was engaged in a tough election campaign for National Committeewoman. Dede Baxter of Lucedale gave another seconding speech for Cindy that day and recalled how Cindy, as President of the Mississippi Federation Of Republican Women, had helped her form a Republican Women’s Club in Lucedale and George County, a sparsely populated County near the Mississippi Gulf Coast.
After her resounding election victory through the votes of the State Convention Delegates, Cindy pledged to be an active National Committeewoman and do all that she could to grow the Republican Party in Mississippi and nationally. She has fulfilled her pledge in countless ways, travelled to remote places, and has mentored hundreds of Republican men and women on what it means to be a Republican and how to effectively promote Republican causes. She has also served with distinction as a member of the Republican National Committee and its Rules Committee; and was my trusted adviser during my tenure as State Party Chairman whenever big decisions had to be made.
In short, Cindy Phillips is the quintessential American patriot – one who loves her country and remains convinced that the Republican Party is the best vehicle to maintain those principles that made our country great Thanks, Cindy, for a job well done; and thanks, also, for the memories.
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