Iowa GOP Continues Strong Growth, Announces Six New Staff Members

January 22, 2015

Contact: Charlie Szold

DES MOINES - The Republican Party of Iowa announced six new staff members this morning, as the Iowa GOP continues its strong growth after a successful election cycle.

Statement from Chad Olsen, Executive Director: "The Iowa GOP is stronger than it has been in decades, and we're excited to continue our growth in the new year. Iowa Republicans take our First-in-the-Nation status seriously, and our first mission will be to prepare for the caucuses and work with our county parties to strengthen our grassroots organization across the state. We are excited about our talented new team and look forward to laying the foundation for a successful caucus and election in 2016."

Statement from Chairman Jeff Kaufmann: "Our executive director has assembled a talented staff, willing to put in the hard work necessary to run our First-in-the-Nation caucuses and elect Republicans across Iowa in 2016. I am excited to work with our new staff members and welcome them to the team."

New staff members include:

Charlie Szold, Communications Director

Charlie Szold started his professional career working for USA TODAY, where he covered technology. After the Supreme Court ruled Obamacare's individual mandate Constitutional, he left to join the Iowa GOP's 2012 Victory program. After the election, he moved back to Virginia, where he served as the communications director for a Fairfax County supervisor. In 2014 he joined Richard Tisei's campaign team in the Massachusetts Sixth Congressional District. He quickly joined the Republican Party of Iowa again in early January and looks forward to helping elect Republicans at all levels of government.

Laura Steven, Assistant Finance Director

Laura Steven is an Iowa native, hailing from Rock Rapids. She is a graduate of Morningside College, where she earned a Bachelor's Degree in Business Administration and Political Science. While earning her degree, she spent a semester in the Iowa State Senate, clerking for Senator Bertrand. She continued her career in politics upon graduation and worked as a field director in the 2014 Senate primary race and as a political director for Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey. 

Adam Wachholz, Regional Political Director (CD-1)

Growing up on a small acreage outside of Algona, Iowa, Adam Wachholz has enjoyed a lifelong passion for advancing conservative principles. After graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from Thomas Edison State College, he joined the 2012 Iowa Victory team. Following the campaign, he served as a legislative aide in the State House of Representatives during the 2013 session. Rejoining the campaign world, Wachholz moved to Virginia Beach, VA, working for the Commonwealth's Republican Party as a Field Director in the 2013 gubernatorial race. Back in his home state by the end of the year, he joined the Senate primary, working as a Field Director on familiar ground in north central Iowa. Most recently, Wachholz assisted the campaign of Representative Steve King as Political Director, spearheading a grassroots effort which resulted in over 235,000 voter contacts and an unprecedented 14,000 absentee ballot advantage for the congressman on Election Day. 

Austin Harris, Regional Political Director (CD-2)

Austin Harris grew up on a family farm southwest of Moulton, Iowa. He recently graduated 2nd in his class at Moulton-Udell High School and is a current student at Indian Hills Community College in Ottumwa. Austin previously worked on the Sheets for Iowa House campaign in 2012 and as a field director on the Miller-Meeks for Congress campaign in 2014.

Alex Latcham, Regional Political Director (CD-3)

Prior to his time at RPI, Alex Latcham worked on the advance teams of Rep. Michelle Bachmann and Gov. Mitt Romney during their 2012 presidential campaigns. Alex also had the privilege of interning on Governor Branstad’s successful 2014 election. Alex earned an undergraduate degree in political science from Drake University, graduating magna cum laude. Raised in Des Moines, Alex currently lives in Windsor Heights with his wife, McKenzie, and their two children, Henry and Eleanor.

Kolby DeWitt, Regional Political Director (CD-4)

Kolby DeWitt, a native of Sioux City, has been affiliated with Congressman Steve King's re-election efforts, was Political Director for Sam Clovis and his bid for Senate, and most recently worked as the Victory Director for the Republican Party of Iowa's 17 northwestern-most counties. Kolby is also carrying out an appointment with the State of Iowa Architectural Examining Board and regularly contributes to Siouxland Magazine, a quarterly lifestyle magazine based out of Sioux City.