“I had always wanted to attend the Republican National Convention. But I never thought I’d get the opportunity,” Goins said. “When I was notified I would be going to this year’s convention I couldn’t wait to go.”
Goins, who currently works as Director of Public Relations for Forcht Group of Kentucky and previously served in the administration of former Gov. Ernie Fletcher, submitted a letter to the Republican Party of Kentucky seeking to be selected as a delegate or alternate to this year’s convention in Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota.
During the Republican Party of Kentucky’s state convention in June, Goins was selected as one of 45 delegates to represent the Commonwealth at the 2008 GOP Convention and have the opportunity to cast his vote in support of the John McCain-Sarah Palin ticket.
“The McCain-Palin ticket represents real change for our country,” Goins said. “Their idea of growing our economy through cutting taxes on business, investing in job training and education for displaced workers and making tax cuts put in place by President Bush permanent will help put our nation back at the top as a business powerhouse.”
During the time Goins spent in Minneapolis-St. Paul he got an opportunity to hear many well known Republican leaders speak to delegates, including former New York Mayor Rudy Guiliani, former GOP presidential candidates Mike Huckabee, Mitt Romney and Fred Thompson, First Lady Laura Bush and Independent Democrat Senator Joe Lieberman.
“I think everyone in attendance was most anxious to hear from Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, Sen. McCain’s choice as a running mate,” Goins added. “Last Wednesday was probably the biggest night in her political career. Not only did she hit a home run but she also showed America that she is funny, intelligent and tough. It confirmed to me why Sen. McCain picked her to be on his ticket.”
Goins and the other Kentucky delegates got to enjoy the festivities at a prime location, next to the host delegation from Minnesota on the front row next to the speaker’s right side of the stage.
“I’m sure the fact that the current Republican National Committee Chairman, Mike Duncan being from Kentucky had something to do with our location,” Goins said. “It gave those of us from the Commonwealth an opportunity to be seen front row for all the major speakers. I heard from family and friends across the country that saw me on CNN, Fox News and the other major broadcast and cable news channels.”
Goins also got to see several attractions in the downtown Minneapolis area and attended CivicFest, a weeklong event that coincided with the convention. He was also able to attend numerous receptions and meet fellow Republicans and business leaders from across Kentucky and across the U.S.
“Because we were always attending functions, either the nightly convention activities at the Xcel Energy Center or the bevy of receptions during the day I probably averaged five hours of sleep each night of the convention,” Goins added. “But I figured since this was a one-in-a-lifetime opportunity, giving up a few hours of sleep seemed a small price to pay to be a part of history.”
Although the convention ended last week and Goins returned to his home over the weekend, the experience of the convention is something he’ll carry with him for the rest of his life.
“This year’s election is taking on additional meaning because of the historical significance and the fact it is the most competitive Presidential election in 80 years,” Goins said. “I will always treasure being a part of this year’s convention and I hope to attend future GOP conventions.”
Goins was born in Harlan and grew up in Cumberland. He is a 1984 graduate of Cumberland High School and received a bachelor’s degree in Public Relations from Eastern Kentucky University. He now lives in Georgetown with his wife Beth and their two daughters, Meghan and Madeline.