[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/02/26/art.getty.mitt.romney.jpg caption="Romney has been lending his support to Republicans around the country.'"]WASHINGTON (CNN) - Mitt Romney will headline a gala at the Virginia Republican State Convention in May, state GOP officials said Friday.
Romney becomes the latest big-name Republican to join in the effort to help Bob McDonnell take back the Virginia governor's mansion from Democrats. The visit will also give Romney a chance to build support among party members in a battleground state as he moves towards a possible second run at the White House in 2012.
The former Massachusetts governor has been keeping a packed schedule of late, along with making TV appearances and writing op-eds about the economy.
Next week, he will headline a fundraiser in Chicago for Illinois state senator Dan Rutherford. Romney then travels to Washington on April 1 to speak to the National Republican Senatorial Committee annual fundraising dinner, followed by a trip to New York City the next day to raise cash for the New York County Republican Party.
"He is staying active politically and doing what he can to help Republican party organizations and individual candidates as we head into the critical 2010 elections," said Romney spokesman Eric Fehrnstrom. "His visit to Virginia is on behalf of the entire Republican ticket there, including the Republican gubernatorial candidate, Bob McDonnell, and Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling."
Bolling, who is seeking re-election, chaired Romney's Virginia campaign operation in 2008 and announced the upcoming visit in an e-mail to supporters.
"Gov. Romney knows more about the economy, creating jobs and building businesses than almost anyone in American politics today," Bolling said.
Romney is slated to speak to the convention's Commonwealth Gala on May 29.
Other high-profile Republicans - including John McCain, Fred Thompson, Bobby Jindal and Rudy Giuliani - have already raised money for McDonnell's campaign as the GOP sets its sights on a symbolic off-year victory this November.