Hankins says goodbye after 12-year run with Republican Committee

Published 8:00 am Friday, February 23, 2024

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

Mike Hankins can recall when the work started with the Lunenburg County Republican Committee. It was 12 years ago, the group was broke and on probation by the district for missing multiple meetings. They had just six active members, including himself. 

“We did not have a checking account but we did have about $30 in cash,” Hankins said. 

But this, he pointed out, was the group’s starting point. He and those other five members rolled up their sleeves and got to work. 

Over the next several years, Hankins was part of the effort to rebuild the local Republican committee, bringing in new members, launching new projects and gaining more attention for the group. Now, after 12 years as chairman, Hankins is stepping back and letting someone new take over the role. 

“When I was first elected as Chair of the Lunenburg Republicans, we were a small, struggling unit,” Hankins said. “Now we are a leader in Virginia. We have grown to about 70 dues paying members. Most of the time we have more money in our accounts than I have in my personal account. We are recognized for our organization, fundraising, and strong Republican vote. Candidates for office seek us out as a place they want to visit. We have very strong leadership throughout our committee, to the point I no longer lead, but I assign others to lead parts of the committee and I just conduct meetings and coordinate what the unit as a whole is doing.” 

He remembers welcoming visitors like George Allen, Susanne Obenshain, E.W. Jackson, Rob Bell, Pete Snyder, and Ed Gillespie to Lunenburg. He invited and welcomed Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin, Lt. Gov. Winsome Sears, Sen. Bill Stanley, Mark Obenshain and a number of others to Lunenburg County. He’s been invited to the Trump White House twice. Hankins also recalls the first time his group gave out a scholarship, originally for $500. 

Hankins added that he is so proud of each member for what they do and is pleased to call them his friends. But now, he says, it’s time for someone new to take the reins. 

“It is time for me to step down and get out of the way for new leadership to take Lunenburg to the next level,” Hankins said. “I still plan to be an active part of our unit and the 5th District.” 

He plans to run as vice chair for Zone 3 of the 5th District, Hankins added. 

“If I am elected and God is willing, I plan to take some of the things Lunenburg has done well to other units and see what they are doing well and bring them home to Lunenburg,” he said. 


Hankins was honored by Lunenburg Republicans during their mass meeting in February. They passed a “Resolution of Gratitude and Appreciation”, pointing out that during the 12 years when Hankins was in charge, the group grew in size and number, they distributed thousands of dollars in scholarship funds to local students. Hankins, the resolution reads, “served as Chair with honor and integrity.” 

Hankins’ role with Lunenburg Republicans will be taken by the new Chairman, Flint Lewis, who will serve a two-year term.