The Loudoun County Democratic Committee has elected party activist Rolland D. "Rollie" Winter as its new chairman.

Winter, an independent sales consultant who lives outside Leesburg, succeeds David L. Whitmer, who recently was appointed to the county Planning Commission.

The local Democrats are still celebrating their resurgence in November, when four Democrats and two Democrat-endorsed independents were elected to the nine-member county Board of Supervisors. The former board included seven Republicans, one independent and one Democrat.

"We were able to make a real difference in the quality of life in Loudoun over the next four years," Winter said. "My goals this year are to build a much stronger grass-roots organization and build a better moneymaking machine so we can properly fund our Democratic candidates."

Winter, 61, said he has been involved in the local Democratic Party for about five years. In 1995, he made an unsuccessful bid for a seat in the Virginia House of Delegates and was defeated by Del. Joe T. May (R-Loudoun).

Whitmer said Winter's bid for the local party's top post was uncontested at a Thursday evening meeting at the Government Center attended by about 60 committee members. Other newly elected committee members--each of whom ran uncontested--include former Loudoun School Board member Kim Price as vice chairman; school activist Keith Nusbaum as vice chairman; Kelly Burk, head of the Loudoun Education Association, as secretary; and longtime party member Bob Pierce as treasurer.

"It's a real sign that the Loudoun Democrats are unified," Whitmer said. "We're going to have a spirited caucus here."

The Loudoun County Republican Committee is scheduled to meet Jan. 31 at the Government Center to set a date for its elections. "Ours is going to be a very large affair," said committee Chairman Tom Berezoski. "Hundreds of people will come to vote."

Berezoski said he is "leaning" toward running for reelection. Middleburg Council member Mark Tate said he plans to seek the post and will make a formal announcement next week.