The Saratoga County Republican Committee has chosen Steve Bulger of Clifton Park as the new party chairman, replacing John Herrick.
Meeting Monday in Mechanicville, the committee also endorsed Paul Pelagalli of Clifton Park for an open Family Court seat in the November election.
Bulger, who is district director for Congressman Chris Gibson, R-Kinderhook, takes the party reins immediately. He will serve two years in the unpaid role.
Herrick, of Saratoga Springs, announced earlier this summer that he would step down after five years as party chairman.
“It is a great honor to be elected chairman of one of the strongest county Republican Committees in the state,” Bulger said. “I have big shoes to fill replacing Chairman Herrick, but he has left the committee in excellent shape.”
The Republican party has a large enrollment advantage in Saratoga County, with the party currently holding all countywide offices and majorities in all 19 towns.
Bulger played a role in all three of Gibson's successful congressional runs, and was on his exploratory committee for governor, before he decided earlier this year to take a college teaching position instead. Gibson represented much of Saratoga County prior to the 2011 redistricting.
Bulger has also worked on campaigns for then-Congressman John Sweeney and for Clifton Park Supervisor Phil Barrett. He formerly served as the Clifton Park Planning Board chairman.
The committee also elected Roger Schiera of Malta as vice-chairman, Cory Custer of Halfmoon as treasurer, and JoAnn Kupferman of Milton as secretary.
Pelagalli was nominated to fill the judicial vacancy left by the retirement this summer of Judge Courtenay Hall.
Pelagalli has appeared in Family Court many times as part of his private legal practice, and has also served as an assistant county attorney, an assistant district attorney, deputy public defender and as a court-assigned attorney representing the rights and interests of children in family and state Supreme Court. He and his wife Carlie reside in Clifton Park with their children, Madeline and Jack, who are now attending college.
“It is an honor and privilege to receive the endorsement of the Republican Party for the Family Court," Pelagalli said in a statement. "Above all, this is a working court and a problem-solving court where the most basic issues of family, safety, support, and encouragement are addressed every single day."
Party officials serve two-year terms.
Schiera serves as the Republican election commissioner for Saratoga County, and Custer is currently the President of the New York State Young Republicans and also the Maine and New Hampshire communications director for the Trump for President campaign. Kupferman works in the county treasurer’s office.
Reach Gazette reporter Stephen Williams at 395-3086, [email protected] or @gazettesteve on Twitter.