Student Union meets to hold hearings and vote for new executive board members
For the first time in more than two years, the Student Union Senate met in person, once again on the third floor of the Shapiro Campus Center. At the first meeting of the semester, the Senate confirmed numerous executive board candidates for their positions and voted to confirm a new executive senator.
Each E-board candidate spoke for two minutes before the senate, then left the room so that the senators could discuss and vote. Union President Peyton Gillespie ’25 and Vice President Lia Bergen ’25 appointed all of the candidates, but it is the job of the Senate to confirm or deny each one.
The first candidate to come before the senate was Hana Miller ’25, the acting Director of Accessibility seeking to be confirmed in that role. Miller said that she is the first person to fill the position, which she said she created “based on conversations with the Disabled Students Network” during the presidential campaign last year.
Miller said her experience in pushing to correct ADA violations in her high school would help her to address disabled students’ concerns regarding accessibility on campus. “Accessibility isn’t just building ramps, it’s building bridges,” Miller said.
Clay Napurano ’24, Director of Health and Wellness, then spoke on why the Senate should confirm him again for that position this school year. Napurano said that his position is a challenging one that requires two years to do properly, and that he is “incredibly passionate about mental health and mental health initiatives on campus.” Napurano also said that the Brandeis Counseling Center used to be physically inaccessible, but that Student Accessibility Services secured funding for a ramp.
Carol Kornworcel ’26, the acting Director of Media and Outreach, then made the case for her confirmation. Kornworcel said that she has been working on creating group chats for the leaders of related student organizations so that they can communicate and coordinate events.
Director of Academic Affairs Bonnie Chen ’23 came to the senate seeking reconfirmation for her position. Chen told the senate about the widely-attended “Take Your Professor to Coffee” initiative she started last year, which attracted over 500 participants.
Tyler Carruth ’23 made the case for his confirmation as Chief of Staff. Carruth said that he met “an amazing chief of staff in D.C., and fell in love with the position.” He also said his experience working for Senator Ed Markey (D-MA) and in various other political roles prepared him for the Chief of Staff position.
Carruth then spoke on behalf of Sophia Reiss ’23, who could not attend the meeting but was seeking confirmation as the In-House Counsel for the Student Union. This is also a new position for this year that the Union created after past incidents in which judiciary members recused themselves from cases because of advice they gave to individuals involved, Carruth said.
Sen. Eamonn Golden ’24 spoke out in support of Reiss. “I was Chief Justice last year,” Golden said. “She is incredible, if anyone is going to be the first in-house counsel, it should be Sophia Reiss.”
The Senate voted after each candidate, and unanimously supported each confirmation.
Senators Nicholas Kanan ’23, Eamonn Golden, and Sherry Tao ’25 were seeking the Executive Senator position and gave brief pitches to the Senate on their qualifications.
The Senate voted by secret ballot and confirmed Kanan as Executive Senator.
Bergen also assigned senators to their committees based on what each senator requested.