Pasternack appointees fill position gaps after heated spring election

Presidential appointments filled positions left empty after the Student Government Association (SGA) Spring 2006 elections.

Former SGA executive president Eric Pasternack was partly responsible for the appointment of four SGA members before he was removed from his position. All of his appointees were approved by both the SGA executive board and senate.

Also, Daniel Beckelman, who resigned during the Spring 2006 semester, was reinstated into SGA as an associate member.

Beckelman resigned last year after publishing a Weblog that criticized SGA members’ abilities and personalities.

Vacancies in the positions of vice president of Administration and Finance, senator of Business and two new positions – sophomore and junior class treasurers – were filled by Pasternack appointees at the end of last school year, before Pasternack was forced to step down.

Due to a lack of qualified candidates, Michael Levy was appointed as vice president of Administration and Finance after the election, according to Christine Cullen, SGA executive president. Pasternack appointed John Ronan to fill the position of senator of Business, as there were no other candidates.

The decision to add treasurers for the sophomore and junior classes was made in a resolution last year, but students were not given a chance to elect representatives for these positions. “The positions weren’t open in the Spring elections because the student body had to approve (them) by voting on (them),” Stephanie Cwynar, sophomore class treasurer, said.

After the student body approved the new positions, Pasternack appointed Steve Viola as junior class treasurer and Cwynar as sophomore treasurer.

Viola was the only person running for vice president of Administration and Finance but was removed from the ballot after being put on probation when a Community Advisor found a decorative wine bottle in his room. However, unlike Pasternack, he was able to remain in SGA this year.

According to the SGA constitution, it was Pasternack’s right and responsibility as executive president to appoint replacements for any vacant positions left after the elections: “In the event that a senatorial position becomes vacant . the president of SGA will conduct a search for a suitable candidate.”

The executive president takes application for any open positions, chooses his or her candidate from the applicants, and the senate and executive board vote on whether or not to approve the candidate.

While none of Pasternack’s appointees were elected in the spring, all of them were SGA members last year: Levy and Viola were senators of Business, Ronan was a senator at-Large and Cwynar was the vice president of her class council.

All of the appointees are eligible to apply for the open position of executive vice president.

In addition to Pasternack’s appointees, Beckelman, the “SGA Insider,” has rejoined SGA.

According to Cullen, Beckelman is currently an associate member of SGA, a position for which he applied last semester. Michael Strom, vice president of Legal and Governmental Affairs, has appointed Beckelman as SGA lobbying chair.

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Myles Ma