The Colorado Republican Party has hired Lx Fangonilo as its new executive director, state GOP Chairman Ken Buck said Friday.
Fangonilo, who most recently worked as Michigan State Director for the Republican National Committee, takes over for Shana Kohn Banberger, the party's executive director since 2014.
“Lx Fangonilo will play a pivotal role in our 2020 election strategy to elect Republicans up and down the ticket across Colorado," Buck said in a statement.
"We must unite and strengthen the Colorado Republican Party, reach out to unaffiliated and Democrat voters to reelect President [Donald] Trump and [U.S. Sen. Cory] Gardner and other state and local Republican candidates.”
Gardner, considered the most vulnerable Republican senator facing election in 2020, is seeking a second term in a state carried twice by Barack Obama and won by Democrat Hillary Clinton in the 2018 election by nearly 5 percentage points.
Fangonilo is the first hire announced by Buck, a three-term congressman who represents the 4th Congressional District and was elected to chair the state party in March.
Before he ran the RNC's operations in Michigan for the 2018 cycle, Fangonilo was state field director for the Michigan GOP. He's also worked for candidates and elected officials at all levels of government in Virginia and California.
Steve House, a former Colorado Republican chairman, is handling the state GOP's day-to-day operations under an organizational plan Buck proposed before he was elected chairman, Buck told Colorado Politics this week.
State Republicans face a tough battle defending Gardner's seat next year as Colorado, long considered a battleground state, turns increasingly blue.
Last year, Democrats swept every statewide race in Colorado, unseated a five-term Republican congressman and took control of both chambers of the General Assembly.
National Republicans say they aren't ready to write off Colorado.
Trump campaign manager Brad Parscale told CBS last weekend that he considers Colorado's electoral votes up for grabs.