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imageDES MOINES- Iowa GOP Chairman Matt Strawn today announced the hiring of additional staff and the promotion of two current staff members as the party begins preparation for the straw poll and 2012 caucus. In addition to Executive Director Chad Olsen who was hired in November and formally confirmed late last month, Strawn has hired Communications Director, Casey Mills, Organization Director, Ryan Gough and Data Director, Patrick Stewart.

"We continue to build upon our successes since the November midterms by assembling a professional, experienced and committed staff in advance of the Ames Straw Poll and First in the Nation Iowa Caucuses. I am confident these additions to our team will make our grassroots activists, elected officials and donors proud,” Strawn said. “Collectively, this group brings a wealth of experience in political organization and communications and most importantly, they understand Iowa politics.”

Chad Olsen was first hired to serve as Executive Director in November and was formally confirmed by the State Central Committee last month. Olsen, a Harlan native, most recently served as the director of the 2010 Iowa GOP Voter Program which set records for voter contacts and returned Republican absentee ballots. He brings vast caucus experience, working every contested caucus since 1996.

Casey Mills has assumed the role of Communications Director.  Mills served as the Organization Director for Senator Chuck Grassley’s successful re-elect. Prior to returning to Iowa, he spent four years working for Grassley in Washington, most recently as his Deputy Press Secretary. Mills is originally from Sioux City.

Ryan Gough and Patrick Stewart come to the Republican Party of Iowa following roles as field director and data director respectively for the 2010 Iowa GOP Voter Program. Both Gough and Stewart worked at the Republican National Committee in the political department before coming to Iowa in 2010.

In addition to the new personnel at the Iowa GOP, both Kari Putney and Vonna Hall have been promoted to new roles within the organization. Putney, an Elgin native and Iowa State University graduate with extensive event and fundraising experience, was recently named the Iowa GOP’s finance coordinator. Hall, who joined the party during the 2010 cycle, will serve as office manager.

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