Kent County Republican Committee Chairman Hans Reigle has always enjoyed the committee's annual Lincoln Dinner fundraiser as "a great night of fellowship" for local GOP members as well as visitors from New Castle and Sussex counties.
"The Lincoln Day Dinner is a tradition for the Republican party in Kent County," Reigle said. "Every year we have fun, eat a great meal and listen to intelligent political figures. This year's event will be great with influential Republican Grover Norquist as the guest speaker."
But, this year's Lincoln Dinner will be the last for Reigle as chairman. Reigle, 48, of Wyoming, first became chairman nearly three years ago to complete an unfinished term. His second, two-year term ends in March.
"It is time for someone else to take the helm," Reigle said. "The Republican Party has had net gains in Kent County elections since I have been chairman due to the hard work of dedicated volunteers and a clear message under a ton of adverse situations – with a Democratic president and a vice president from Delaware."
But Reigle, a professor at Delaware State University and an airline pilot, has found himself busier with his career. And he wants to spend more time with his wife, Anne, and their three children.
"There is an outstanding leadership team prepared to step in beginning in March," he said.
Kent County Republican Committee Secretary Janice Gallagher said Reigle had done a good job at the helm in large part because of his ability to listen and to include everybody.
"I'm partial to pilots; I'm married to a pilot and I think they have an ability to maintain a coolness under fire," Gallagher said. "He just has a very pleasant attitude with everyone. He's taken time to listen to everyone's concerns."
Gallagher said the Kent County Republican Committee asked Reigle to still advise leadership from time to time.
Reigle, meanwhile, said he was keeping his future political options open.
IF YOU GO
WHAT Kent County Republican Committee Lincoln Dinner
WHEN 5:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. Saturday
WHERE Dover Downs Convention Center, 1131 N. DuPont Highway, Dover
COST $75 per person; tables vary from$600 for general to $1,200 for gold.
CONTACT Limited No. of tickets available at www.kentrepublicans.com through eventbrite.