ASI presidential candidate and political science senior Joi Sullivan was appointed Wednesday evening as the newest member of the Board of Directors. She says it will not affect her campaign strategy moving toward the April 22 elections. | Zach Maher/Mustang News

Benjy Egel
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Associated Students, Inc. (ASI) presidential candidate and political science senior Joi Sullivan was ratified into the Board of Directors on Wednesday night, filling a vacancy in the College of Liberal Arts (CLA).

Sullivan unsuccessfully ran to join the Board of Directors last spring, but collected the most votes of anyone who didn’t win one of the four CLA seats. After former Board member Michaela Bailey switched her major from sociology to wine and viticulture, Sullivan was appointed to her seat Wednesday night.

“I have a lot of involvement in the College of Liberal Arts in an unofficial capacity, and so this is just one more step in becoming an official representative for the college,” Sullivan said.

Fellow presidential candidate and civil engineering junior Connor Paquin is a Board of Directors member under the College of Engineering. Agricultural business junior Jake Rogers and computer engineering junior Will Blumhardt, the other candidates, are not ASI officers.

The ratification won’t impact Sullivan’s campaign in a policy-related sense, she said. She won’t be able to start and pass any resolutions which might give her an upper hand over candidates without ASI ties.

“I think it’s important not to mix the two to where my motivations (as a board member) are because I’m running for ASI president,” she said. “And to be honest, the timeline of this really doesn’t give me any leverage or advantage over any other candidate.”

Most ratifications are fairly straightforward, but Sullivan’s presence as a member of ASI President and agricultural business senior Jason Colombini’s executive cabinet made some board members question her objectiveness.

Sullivan spent fall quarter as Colombini’s Board of Representatives liaison, but did not fill the position during winter quarter because of a class conflict.

Her current position as an executive cabinet member was called into question by board member and software engineering sophomore Myra Lukens, who said Sullivan would be an excellent board member were it not for her other ties.

“If we ratify Joi, I think it sets precedence for the future, and it’s kind of like we’re expressing our stance of this conflict,” Lukens said. “For me, it’s an argument of principle rather than an argument of practicality.”

Seventeen members of the Board, including Paquin, voted to ratify Sullivan. Lukens, business administration senior Kyle Williams and biological sciences senior Cale Reid opposed her inclusion.

Chair of the Board and agricultural science senior Tatiana Prestininzi said Sullivan will serve on two standing committees, such as ASI Advocacy or ASI Business and Finance. Board members and executive cabinet typically only have to serve on one committee each, but Sullivan’s dual positions require her to serve on two.

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