With very few people running, some candidates had little to worry about during last month’s Arts and Science Federation of Associations general elections. As the only candidate for president, for example, Alex Gordon was easily elected with 662 votes, representing 77.4 per cent of the total.
“I knew it was coming, so it wasn’t like it was a shock to me,” he said with a laugh. “But it was still a relief to know the elections were over and I could go back to not campaigning.”
Both the new VP social, Colman George Aucoin, and the new VP external and sustainability, Asma Omar, ran unopposed as well and were elected with around 70 per cent of the vote each.
But two of the other executive contests offered very tight races. The competition among VP internal affairs and VP academic and Loyola affairs candidates finished so closely that they will be subject to a mandatory recount this week, according to ASFA’s chief electoral officer Nick Cuillerier. As it stands, the victors of those races are Schubert Laforest and Christina Gentile, who beat out their competitors by only 11 and 25 votes respectively.
The recounts were put on hold during reading week because the CEO wanted both candidates present. Additionally, candidates have until March 8 to file contestations, though Cuillerier said he does not expect to receive any.
Among the remaining positions, Laura Gomez was elected as VP finance by a comfortable 16.7 per cent margin over her nearest competitor in the three-candidate race, and both Rachel Feldman and Madeline Griffin were elected as independent councillors, running without competition.
A byelection will be required next fall to elect a VP communications as well as third independent councillor in order to fill those vacancies.
Despite the end of elections coinciding with the beginning of reading week, president-elect Gordon says he has spoken to most of the members of his executive individually and that they will be meeting as a group soon. He will immediately be taking steps to strengthen next year’s ASFA by encouraging students who want to get involved to run for their member associations.
“[I want] to fill the member associations with people who really want to do good and who want to be involved,” Gordon said. “ASFA can’t function without the MAs and MAs can’t function without the students. So getting the member associations filled with good people is the next step.”