After glitches and delays caused a two-hour extension of the College of William and Mary’s Student Assembly elections, Chrissy Scott ’11 defeated Ben Brown ’11 and Jessee Vasold ’11 to become the next SA president.
By the time the polls closed at midnight, Scott and Kaveh Sadeghian ’12 had garnered 40.84 percent of the vote with 1,324 ballots cast — defeating second place finisher Brown by nearly four percent.
Scott and Sadeghian were notified of their victory minutes after midnight.
“[Elections commission member] Jill [Olszewski ’12] called me at 12:21 to say that we won,” Scott said. “But I was afraid she was going to call back and say, ‘you ran a great campaign, but… It is April Fool’s.”
Both Scott and Sadeghian said that they received many congratulatory phone calls — from supporters and the other candidates.
“My phone is blowing up,” Scott said.
Sadeghian, who had no prior SA experience, said that the news was particularly surreal.
“Someone in the other room was like, ‘Dude, you won,’” he said. “I’m in Student assembly now. Wow.”
Scott said that she appreciated the hard work of her entire campaign staff and supporters.
“Our supporters really came out strong today,” she said. “I couldn’t be more thankful for everyone who supported us throughout this whole thing.”
Scott said the unexpected extension of the voting period was irritating due to the effort needed to continue campaigning, but that it did not stop her.
“I went into Miller Hall to make sure that everyone had voted, and I went to the units to make sure that every single person I knew in the units had voted,” she said.
The results came after a two-hour delay initiated by the SA elections commission in response to difficulty voting among some students. Scott said that the final tally showed the commitment of her supporters.
“I throughout the day was frequently getting texts from people being like I haven’t gotten my ballot yet, but I think that shows the dedication of our supporters,” she said. “It just shows that our supporters were so dedicated to voting for us that they waited throughout the day.”
Brown and Betty Jeanne Manning ’12 placed second with 36.49 percent of the vote, or 1,183 ballots cast, while Vasold and Caitlin Goldblatt ’11 finished in third place with 20.39 percent of the vote, or 661 ballots cast. Write-in candidates received 2.28 percent of the vote, or 74 ballots.
Sadeghian said that their campaign reached people not traditionally involved or interested in the SA.
“This just goes to show the importance of dedication and loyalty,” he said. “I think we got an entire base of people finally involved in the SA that had never really been involved before.”
Scott said that the positive nature of the campaign was a welcome change.
“One of the great things about this campaign was that everything was positive,” she said. “Even people who were wearing Brown-Manning bracelets or Jessee and Caitlin pins were very supportive of what we were doing and what our goals were.”
According to Sadeghian, the direction of the campaign mirrored its visions for the College.
“We didn’t direct the campaign necessarily, we just motivated people,” Sadeghian said. “That’s the whole purpose of our campaign — delegating and empowering people.”
With the campaign over, Scott said that she and Sadeghian would focus on implementing their platform.
“One of the things that we’ve been focusing on throughout this whole thing was just really empowering groups through the Student Assembly,” Scott said. “There are so many passionate people on this campus, and we really want the Student Assembly to be a support for them.”
Sadeghian said that the main goal of the new administration would be to connect student organizations across the College.
“The Student Assembly is meant to look over every other organization at William and Mary,” he said. “I don’t know what other organization is available to connect a group that’s doing ‘A’ and a group that’s doing ‘B’ — they’ve never met each other, but they essentially have the same goals.”
For Sadeghian, connection and communication is just one of many possible changes in SA culture.
“The potential of Student Assembly is huge,” he said. “How do we make this grow? What’s the next step?”
The SA elections commission also released the results of the other elections shortly after the voting deadline passed.
The referendum to subsidize Sexually Transmitted Infection testing through the Student Health Center passed with 77.51 percent, or 2,513 votes.
The referendum to provide subsidized flu shots free of charge passed with 81.59 percent of the vote, or 2,645 ballots.
The program to provide free copies of the New York Times to student at the College failed to pass with 64.19 percent of votes against.
A similar program to provide free copies of the Virginia Gazette to students also failed to pass with 75.29 percent of votes against.
A non-binding referendum supporting the abolition of the College’s Honor Council failed with 75.32 percent of the vote against.
A non-binding referendum expressing no confidence in the SA also failed with 58.20 percent of the vote against.
In class elections for the Class of 2013, Noah Kim with 18.83 percent of the vote or 546 votes, Grace Colby with 18.97 percent of the vote or 550 votes, Curt Mills with 17.07 percent of the vote or 495 votes, and Jake Lewitz with 15.66 percent of the vote or 454 votes won the four available senator positions.
For vice president for social affairs, Lemondre Watson won with 66.62 percent of the vote or 483 votes.
Morgan Dyson won the position of vice president for advocacy with 88.97 percent of the vote or 645 votes, while Tess Deatley won for secretary with 90.62 percent of the vote or 657 votes. Both ran unopposed.
Ryan McManus won the position of treasurer 50.34 percent of the vote or 365 votes.
David Alpert won re-election as president with 57.10 percent of the vote or 414 votes.
For the Class of 2012, Carlos Quintella, Zach Marcus, Stef Felitto and Adam Stokes ran unopposed for the four available senator positions.
Matt Schofield won the position of president with 88.50 percent of the vote or 454 votes. He ran unopposed.
For vice president for social affairs, Stephanie McGuire won with 76.8 percent of the vote or 394 votes.
Vice president for advocacy was won by John Pence with 93.18 percent or the vote or 478 votes. Pence ran unopposed.
Uriah Kim won the position of secretary with 92.98 percent of the vote or 477 votes, and Matthew Nathan was elected to serve as class treasurer with 92.59 percent of the vote, or 475 votes. Both also ran unopposed.
For the Class of 2011, Michael Douglass with 19.45 percent of the vote or 375 votes, Michael Young with 17.63 percent of the vote or 340 votes, Joshua Karp with 16.44 percent of the vote or 317 votes and Erin Mee with 15.77 percent of the vote or 304 votes won the four available senator positions.
Vice president for social affairs was won by Wayne Pearson with 88.38 percent or 426 votes.
Kate Ainsworth won the position of vice president for advocacy with 85.68 percent of the vote or 413 votes.
For secretary, Sahra Roble won with 89.83 percent of the vote or 433 votes.
Corey Flatt won the position of treasurer with 48.55 percent of the vote or 234 votes.
Michael Tsidulko won re-election as president with 69.50 percent of the vote or 335 votes.
Pearson, Ainsworth and Roble each ran unopposed.