While nowhere near as dysfunctional as its neighbors in Montgomery County, the Republican Committee of Chester County has taken some hits in recent years.
Democrats have increased voter registration in Chester County and the GOP has lost key legislative seats once solidly in the Republican camp, including the 19th Senate District and the 156th House District.
Those recent defeats were not enough to force a change at the top. The party has reelected Skip Brion as chairman for the next two years. Brion has led the Chester County Republican Party since 2002.
Brion, a lawyer by profession, faced no opposition at the committee's annual convention Wednesday evening at East High School in West Chester.
"I'm honored to lead the Chester County Republicans," Brion said in a written statement. "The county Republican organization has been recognized as one of the strongest in the Commonwealth and the nation. The committee members are the backbone of this hardworking organization and we’re going to help elect John McCain and every Republican on the ballot this year."
The rest of the GOP leadership team includes Rosie Silva, vice chairwoman; Paul Andriole, treasurer; Mike Steinberger, secretary; Lisa Schnell, assistant secretary; and Leonard Rivera, financial secretary.
Brion has been an active member of the Chester County Republican Committee for three decades. He has been a member of the Republican State Committee of Pennsylvania since 2000 and served as an alternate delegate to the Republican National Convention in 1988 and 1992.
Brion is managing partner of Buckley, Brion, McGuire, Morris & Sommer LLP, in West Chester. His other activities include serving as treasurer of Delaware Valley Regional Finance Authority, a member of DNB First Advisory Board, a member of the Board of Directors for SEPTA, and a member of the Board of Trustees for Chester County Historical Society.
He and his wife, Glenda, live in East Bradford Township and have two adult children, Kate and Scott.
Silva, who lives in West Chester, is a lifelong resident of the county. She has been involved in her local community for more than 30 years. She is a member of the board of the Chester County Convention and Visitors' Bureau and the organization's foundation. She has volunteered for Chester County Day and Working Women's Wardrobe.
She has held a number of positions within the Republican Committee of Chester County, including being treasurer and secretary. She has also worked in a number of local, state and national campaigns.
Andriole, a graduate of Lincoln University, is a southern Chester County native. He is a Vietnam veteran who served with the United States Army and received a Commendation for Meritorious Service. He is director of Veterans Affairs for the County of Chester. He has been an independent small businessman for more than 30 years, owning a fast food take-out operation and being a partner in a real estate firm, surveying firm and an information technology firm. He has also been a member of a bank advisory board.
Andriole has served as mayor and a council member in Oxford. He has been a member of the executive committee of the Republican Committee of Chester County for eight years and has been an area chairman.
Steinberger is vice president of First National Bank, developing and managing commercial real estate mortgage and banking relationships. He has been in the banking industry for 24 years, almost entirely in the commercial lending and commercial credit administration areas. He is a graduate of Moravian College and the Rutgers University of Business. Steinberger lives in East Goshen with his wife, Michelle, and two sons.
Steinberger has been active in a number of civic organizations, including the Paoli Battlefield Preservation Fund, the East Goshen Preservation Association, Boy Scouts, Rotary, West Chester Business Improvement District and Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Chester County.
He served as security staff for the Republican National Convention in Philadelphia. In 2002 he was elected a Republican County Committeeman from East Goshen. In 2004 he was re-elected and elected Vice Chair of the East Goshen Committee.
Schnell has been involved in politics since she was six years old growing up in Cape May, N.J. She was secretary of her Teenage Republican chapter in her high school, a member of the Aggie GOP in college and has worked the polls every election since living in Chester County. She serves as a Republican committeewoman from Schuylkill Township. She lives in Schuylkill with her husband, Rick, and four children.
Rivera, who lives in Avondale, is an attorney with MacElree Harvey of West Chester and Kennett Square. He is a graduate of Ursinus College and The Dickinson School of Law.
Rivera has been active in the community, including the Kennett School District, Westminster Presbyterian Church, Southern Chester County Soccer Association. He has been assist vice-treasurer and parliamentarian for the Republican Committee of Chester County, Chester County Republican Latino Coalition Chair and a committeeman.