Though libertarians believe strongly in self-government – and some, in no formal government at all – the Libertarian Party structures its leadership based on a classic model that parallels other hierarchical organizations. As such, the LPKS requires occasional voting to usher in new members of the Executive Committee, who then guide the direction of the Party.
The 2021 LPKS Convention was held May 1st in Manhattan, KS, and presented a lively process with candidates vying for several new positions. Read more about our new Chair, Vice Chair, Secretary, and District 1 Coordinator…
Kansas native Rob Hodgkinson is now serving his seventh non-consecutive year as Chair of the Libertarian Party of Kansas. He has been involved in local politics for decades, having attended dozens of conventions, engaged in televised forums and public debates, and testified at House and Senate hearings on liberty-focused causes. Twice he ran for a seat in the KS House of Representatives, and for Secretary of State in 2018.
“I look forward to the next few years as the LPKS Chair again. For the first time ever in Kansas, a third party has more than one percent of voters registered as LP members. We are working to increase this growth to become the largest percentage of Libertarian voters of any state.”
Rob is a fifth-generation Kansan, father and grandfather, and currently resides in Stilwell (about 30 miles south of Kansas City, Kansas). He plans to help break the caustic political divide, with fairness and inclusiveness for all Kansans in the electoral process.
“I have voted in every Presidential election since turning 18 and have yet to vote for a R or D for that position,” he says. “I have always instinctively known the two-party system is broken; it was later in life that I began to understand the reasons why.”
Rob Hodgkinson succeeds former chairperson Ned Kelley, who stepped down mid-term. Rob was elected to serve one year before a renewed vote for the position takes place in 2022. He plans to direct his focus on growth in the areas of voter registration and candidate recruitment.
“Freedom in several other states in the US shows that people, not government, are always the best option for any crises. I welcome all Kansans to take a good look at the Libertarian Party – we still are for the people, just like we have been for the last 50 years.”
Contact Rob: firstname.lastname@example.org
LPKS VICE CHAIR
James Doyle credits his ability to empathize with different communities to a continuous change of scenery throughout his formative years. Born in Wheat Ridge, Colorado, he lived also in Florida and New Jersey during childhood, which gave him a “melting pot” exposure to city and rural life around the country before settling in Belleville, Kansas.
“In my personal experiences, I’ve seen that we all have more similarities than differences. If we can teach this concept to disenfranchised voters and remove their need for ‘fear,’ the possibilities for the liberty movement are endless. Of course, their personal biases of liberty for some, not all, will still be our biggest hurdle. Moving the needle and being both proactive and repetitive in conversation is progress nonetheless.”
James enlisted in the US Marines while in high school and served from 2011-2019. Stationed in Florida, California, and Japan throughout his career gave him ample opportunity to learn about his leadership and oratory style, as well as observe firsthand the waste and corruption of the federal government. Discussions of government overreach, violations of individual liberties, and importance of holding public servants accountable were common among James and the members of his military units.
James credits the death of his motivation to serve in the Corps to the final two years of his career. “I started receiving Marines who were born after September 11, 2001 who would face deployments to Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan, Kuwait, and Qatar within the next two years. Two decades in the same combat zone and trillions of dollars wasted only to potentially see these service members return in a box – or come home alive, but with health issues – is not a legacy I wished to be a part of.”
Currently, James serves as a city council member in Belleville where he is also heavily involved in volunteerism. He serves as board member and treasurer for the Belleville High Banks and as a social media coordinator, content creator, and supervisor for nonprofit group People for Liberty. The next three years, he plans to host social mixers and outreach events to drive membership recruitment and voter education in Central and Western Kansas – particularly on college campuses.
“I will always place principles before party loyalty, but I am more than happy, willing, and able to assist the Libertarian Party of Kansas’ members and Executive Committee wherever and whenever I can! To our members at large, please contact me if you have questions, comments, or concerns day or night.”
Contact James: email@example.com
After registering to vote as Libertarian at age 18, Eric Lund became active in LP National as well as the Libertarian Party of California in the early 1990s. He served as Treasurer of the California LP, Secretary of its Long Beach/Southbay affiliate, an at-large member to the Executive Committee, and Alternate to the National LP Executive committee. In 2002 Eric was elected to public office with the Cordova Recreation and Park District in Sacramento and served four years. He has worked tirelessly in both California and Kansas to help advance ideas of freedom within local spheres.
“Throughout my decades of LP activism I have staffed Party office, collected signatures for candidates to get on them on the ballot, walked precincts door-to-door for Libertarian candidates, and lobbied and spoke before legislative committees on ballot-access laws. I also served as Miami County coordinator and contacted every registered libertarian in the county to get it organized.”
Eric has also appeared as a guest on local television speaking for libertarian positions, and on National Public Radio in favor of expanding ballot access for minor parties and changing voting methods. Currently, he is retired, after a career as an auditor working with large defense contractors.
“There was a frisson of excitement at this past convention. I hope this energy and number of attendees becomes the new baseline for future LPKS conventions. I look forward to helping more counties become active, getting members elected (especially at the local level), and growing the party.”
Contact Eric: firstname.lastname@example.org
DISTRICT 1 COORDINATOR
Born and raised in central Kansas, Dan Gaeddert is no stranger to Kansas politics. While he admits that he believed in the “lesser of 2 evils” theory throughout his early voting years, it was not long before he got tired of participating in the duopoly. Dan first discovered the Libertarian party during the Johnson/Weld campaign of 2016, and dove in head-first. Since then, Dan has volunteered with multiple Libertarian campaigns, creating content, and organizing events.
“We are a political party, not a social club.” says Dan, “And our job is to get our candidates elected. Statewide or national campaigns are fun, and great for raising awareness about the Libertarian party. But when it comes to making real change, we need to focus on the local level. Campaigns for state house, county commissioner, school board, and city council are all races that can be easily won by Libertarians, where we can prove that Libertarian values are effective.”
In order to get Libertarians elected in local races, Dan plans an aggressive strategy to develop strong Libertarian party affiliates in key areas throughout the 1st congressional district. Employing effective marketing across multiple forms of media, he hopes to organize passionate Libertarians to push local activism and set the party up for a strong showing in the 2022 election.
“When I voted in the 2020 election, I was only able to cast my ballot for 2 Libertarian candidates. Quite frankly, this is pathetic. From that day forward, I vowed to become a part of the solution, not the problem. If we ever want to be taken seriously as a political party, we need to have Libertarians running in every race, in every election. If the Tiresome Two can do it, why can’t we?”
If you live in the 1st congressional district and are interested in running for office, volunteering, or otherwise becoming more active in the Libertarian party, please do not hesitate to contact Dan. He is more than willing to help you find your niche within the party!
If an LPKS member chooses to appeal a decision made by the Executive Committee, they may request a hearing by the newly-formed Judiciary Committee, which includes Kris Logan, Sara Isenhour, Mike Kerner, Al Terwelp, and David Graham.
Congratulations to all, and we look forward to making greater strides towards freedom with you!