KANSAS CITY — The longtime chief of staff for U.S. Rep. Jo Ann Emerson has been named the new executive director of the Missouri Republican Party.
The selection of Lloyd Smith as the party's new director was ratified Saturday as Republicans gathered for their annual Lincoln Days conference. Smith plans to begin work full-time on April 1.
He will succeed Jared Craighead as executive director.
Smith, of Sikeston, has worked for 28 years for either Emerson or her late-husband, U.S. Rep. Bill Emerson. Smith also served as campaign manager for former Sen. Jim Talent and as a senior campaign adviser for President George W. Bush.
Smith said his top goal is to keep Republican control of the seat held by outgoing Sen. Kit Bond in 2010.