Local Republicans are getting a new leader.

On Monday, Danny Pelton, chairman of the Erath County Republican Party, announced he is stepping down. Pelton is challenging State Representative J.D. Sheffield in the Republican Party Primary.

Dr. George Eichenberg, a criminal justice professor at Tarleton State University, will officially become the local party's newest chairman on Monday, Sept. 16.

Aside from working on various campaigns, Eichenberg said this is the biggest job he has ever taken on in terms of politics.

"I've never done anything like this before," Eichenberg said. "Right now my plan is to see us through the spring primary."

Eichenberg said he is excited about leading the local party, which he says continues to grow.

"We are getting so big that we are going to have to find a new place to meet soon," he said.

But for now, Erath County Republicans meet at 6 p.m. on the third Monday of every month at TexasBank.