| 03.17.2018

New leader, new team


ASUI President-elect appoints his chief of staff and looks to build staff

ASUI President-elect Max Cowan has selected former presidential candidate Alejandra “Vivi” Gonzalez as his chief of staff and has begun the hiring process for the rest of his cabinet.

“I am very excited for this opportunity,” Gonzalez said. “I see a lot of potential for next year and a lot of passionate and innovative students who will thrive in ASUI.”

Gonzalez was appointed to the high-ranking ASUI position after she expressed interest when Cowan won the election last week.

“She has the ability to work with a large and diverse group of students,” Cowan said. “And has the ability to support them in their different roles.”

Her role as chief of staff is to oversee all ASUI staff and make sure each student understands their roles and responsibilities, Cowan said. She will also meet one-on-one with staff members to ensure they have goals and objectives to help advance ASUI’s mission represent students to the administration and to the state.

“I think the chief of staff is a job that when done well enables other people to accomplish their goals,” Cowan said. “When ASUI is working successfully, I think that is a sign of a strong chief of staff.”

The chief of staff is not the only position Cowan has to fill. He has six director positions and four board chairs to hire as well, he said.

There are two rounds of hiring, Cowan said, one in the spring and one in the fall. The cabinet level positions, such as director of athletics, director of health and wellness and chairman of the funding board, will be hired before school wraps up in May.

During the fall semester, board members and any cabinet level-position that wasn’t filled in the spring will be filled.

Currently, there are around 40 applicants for the cabinet positions and multiple people are applying for multiple positions, Cowan said. Cowan and a few other ASUI staff members will interview the applicants to determine who is best for each position.

“We are currently preparing to review ASUI executive candidate applications and just from the few that I have already seen I know that next year will be a year full of progress and positive change both within ASUI and for the student body,” Gonzalez said. “We will be working hard to achieve both Max and Stetson’s proposed goals but also create an empowering environment for the directors and board chairs to achieve goals of their own.”

After the applicants are selected, they need to be confirmed by the ASUI Senate, Cowan said. Cowan plans on being transparent with the senate and listen to any input they have.

“I was very excited about the number of new people applying for positions,” Cowan said. “There is an opportunity to get a lot of new people involved in ASUI this round of hiring.”

Graham Perednia can be reached at arg-news@uidaho.edu 

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