Veteran Republican operative Bob Zappi of Westport has been named to manage campaign of state Rep. John Shaban of Redding, who is seeking the GOP nomination in the 4th Congressional District this year.
Shaban, who represents the 135th Assembly District, announced Zappi's appointment in a news release Tuesday.
Shaban, if nominated, would challenge incumbent Democrat Jim Himes in November,
A former Westport Republican Town Committee chairman, Zappi last fall successfully managed the campaign of Jim Marpe to win the first selectman's office. Zappi brought to that contest polling and other modern research and marketing techniques not previously used in a local campaign in Westport.
"Bob brings to my campaign a demonstrated pattern of success in both messaging and utilizing state-of-the-art campaigning techniques," Shaban said in the release.
Shaban announced his bid for the GOP nomination in September, joining former state Sen. Dan Debicella of Shelton in that race. A third Republican entered the field this week, Joseph Bentivegna, an eye doctor from Fairfield.
Soon after the Westport election, Marpe in November installed Zappi as a $125,000-a-year administrative assistant. But Zappi quickly resigned in the face of criticism about the appointment. The job has not since been filled.