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Brendon’s Endorsements

Posted By Brendon Goodmurphy On January 18, 2008 @ 12:57 am In Elections | Comments Disabled

Here are my endorsements, for what they’re worth. I tried to give justification behind my decisions – both why I am supporting certain candidates, and why I’m not supporting others.

Please note: These are not necessarily Maayan’s endorsements, or any one else’s from the UBC Insiders, those will come later in the week. I am publishing these now because I’m getting a lot of pressure from candidates to give endorsements, so I thought I would rather publish my thoughts, rather than just showing up on people’s websites without justifying why.

My experience over the past year as the VP Academic has given me a lot of insight and knowledge into the AMS and campus politics. I think I can lend some insight into the nuances of the job, but I still have biases and opinions, and you may not agree, so make sure you figure out what you’re priorities are, and who represents them the best.

Read my endorsements behind the jump…

President: Mike Duncan
Mike is going to bring something different to the position than Jeff did – and that’s not necessarily a bad thing. The AMS could use someone who can get students excited, involved and proud of the AMS. Mike will have to ensure that that involvement in the AMS is meaningful – that students take ownership over the AMS, not just participate in it. Also, Mike has a lot to learn about how to manage a critical but respectful relationship with the administration. But he’ll be able to build a good executive team, get Council participation, run a successful referendum, and bring some new perspectives into the AMS’ mandate. I have trouble seeing Rodrigo’s vision, and I think that’s mostly because he has trouble articulating it. And Matt just can’t handle the leadership role, in my opinion – he has some learning to do about being a team player, and could handle growing into his leadership style more.

VP Academic: No One
Since this is my portfolio, I’m sure it seems pretty weak to not choose a candidate. I have hesitations about all three, and I’m not ready to endorse any of them at this point. I think Nate could bring a lot of much-needed critique of the AMS and the administration, and challenge Council’s assumptions and values. The problem is, there’s a lot more to an Executive position, and I don’t fully think he buys into the non-lobbying side of the AMS. He wants a lot to change about the AMS, and a lot needs to change, and he has a strong vision for it, but being able to create that change will require Nate to work within the structure of Council, and the bureaucratic structures of the AMS. Alex is detail-oriented, critical of the University, hard-working, and gets a lot of the issues. However, he tends to be uncompromising in his opinions. I also find his platform to be thin – I need to see how he will engage students in the governance issue, and how he plans to “organize” the student senate – it’s a relationship that requires careful treading, the AMS can’t overstep its boundaries. Also, it would be nice to see some continuity in my efforts to lobby for more student housing, not just internal issues that residents face (not that that isn’t important) – but I guess that’s kind of selfish. Rob’s platform is interesting, and he seems to understand some of the issues, but he hasn’t shown me what he’s capable of. He doesn’t give us much on HOW he’s going to meet his goals, and I really don’t think there’s room in the portfolio for student life issues, that has to stay in the VP Admin portfolio. None of the candidates have addressed the safety/ equity/diversity/social justice issues in their platforms – Nate gets the closest, but only in terms of “power for the students.” Although I don’t doubt Nate’s passion for social justice one bit, I would like to see some ideas for how he’s going to bring that into the structure of the organization effectively.

VP Finance: Chris Diplock
Chris did his homework, he knows the issues, the portfolio, and the AMS. He has a lot to learn, also, as he hasn’t had that much experience with the AMS until September – but you always have a lot to learn coming into an Executive position, and Chris has shown that he is smart and capable of learning the intricacies of the AMS and campus politics. He is dedicated to the AMS, as he has shown this in his dedication in AMS committees, and coming to AMS Council all the time (even though he isn’t on Council!), and he’s working the hardest that I’ve seen on campaigning. I know Andrew from Council, and he’s been a hardworking, dedicated Councilor, and his platform is pretty good, but he hasn’t shown me that he knows the portfolio well enough, and how he’s going to reach his goals.

VP External: Stef Ratjen
Stef has some great new ideas to bring to the portfolio. She has strong goals and a clear vision for how she’s going to reach them. I know that Stef is really hardworking, she’s passionate, and she’s shown a willingness to learn and be challenged. She will have to learn a lot more about CASA/CFS politics, and learn how to navigate them effectively, but as long as she hones her passion and frustration effectively, she could bring some new perspectives to federal lobbying. I also think Stef could get students involved in the lobbying effort. Freeman’s platform doesn’t give concrete ideas for how to do what he wants to do, and I don’t think he has the experience for the position.

VP Admin: Sarah Naiman
Is there anything to say? She has more than proven herself this year as VP Admin, and she is obviously more than qualified. We are at a pivotal stage in the SUB Renew process, and she will be integral for ensuring continuity of this year’s exec. And besides, who is that other guy?


Blake Frederick – has been my Associate VP, University Affairs for the past year, and has done an incredible job. He gets the issues, he’s a passionate advocate for students, and he has a clear vision and a lot of experience for how to get stuff done.

Alfie Lee – has been a dedicated and hardworking senator over the past year. He is eager to learn, puts a lot of effort working with AMS Council and Exec, and another year in the position will only make him more effective.

Azim Wazeer – Azim has a lot of experience working with AMS Exec, so he will be able to keep up a strong relationship with the AMS. He is detail-oriented, passionate and competent. He has strong values, and good ideas, and I’m sure he’ll be an engaged student senator.

Philip Edgcumbe – I don’t know Philip that well, but that doesn’t mean I doubt his ability to do the job well. The first time he came into my office to talk, I was impressed by how well he got the issues. His experiences on campus, particularly with Carl Wieman will be greatly beneficial for bringing good ideas to Senate. He is smart and will take the role seriously.

Alex Lougheed – I think Alex would be a great senator. He is hardworking and detail-oriented, he won’t be afraid to ask tough questions, and he won’t be afraid to meet with an administrator or sit down with another senator to hash through something further.


Timothy Blair – Tim knows what’s going on with campus development. He has a very mature, intelligent approach, and I think he would be effective at getting the Board to listen, while still standing strong on students’ concerns.


Andrew Carne – Andrew surprised me in this race. I don’t know him very well or his work in the EUS, but he has the right priorities, and he is very detail-oriented. He understands how important it is to know everything that is coming to Board, and I think he would be capable of doing the leg work to learn about issues he doesn’t fully understand. I have concerns about not being experienced enough, and not being able to ask tough questions and put some pressure on the Board.


Bijan Ahmadian – Bijan will be able to get the respect of the Board. I believe that he could do a good job, and would be able to communicate the activities of Board to students. He would take the role seriously, and would work hard. I haven’t seen concrete examples of HOW he will be an effective BoG rep, or his stance/opinion on student issues (I want a BoG rep who has strong opinions), and I’d also need some reassurance that he can put on the pressure when the situation calls for it.

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