The Associated Students of Washington State University President and Vice President-Elect Jordan Frost and Garrett Kalt have selected 11 executive staff members for the 2017 – 18 academic year.
“The goal with a smaller staff is to increase efficiency and maximize the use of student dollars,” Frost said. “We believe having fewer people doing more work will raise the level of involvement and commitment of each individual.” The 2016 – 17 Executive Cabinet had 17 staff members.
After an open application process, the hiring committee selected candidates for an interview and asked them to complete supplemental application materials tailored to the position for which they applied. The hiring committee scored each part of the application: the written responses, supplemental material, and interview. Candidates with the highest scores were selected.
The hiring committee comprised President and Vice President-Elect Frost and Kalt, as well as their selected Chief of Staff Jenna Damberg, Black Student Union VIBES Chair Leoma James, former Panhellenic Executive Officer Ty Baird, and United Greek Cabinet President Ricky Luna. These student leaders brought a diverse and unique perspective to the hiring process, which ensured a wide range of student voices were represented accurately.
Following are the Executive Cabinet members for the 2017 – 18 academic year:
Deputy Chief of Staff: Carmen Jaramillo is a sophomore studying political science and communication with a minor in French. Jaramillo has previously served as the ASWSU reporter at the Daily Evergreen, and currently works at the Compton Union Building. Jaramillo will assist the Vice President in his duties, work closely with all ASWSU communication operations, and connect with groups on campus as an advocate and resource.
Director of Finance: Jamie Lepper is a junior studying business administration with a minor in communication. Lepper works in the Office of Student Conduct and serves as the Executive Recruitment Chair in her sorority, Chi Omega. In her role at Chi Omega she manages a large budget to be used by her recruitment team. As the Director of Finance, Lepper will manage the ASWSU Executive Cabinet budget, oversee all spending, and work with the Chief of Staff to handle all Executive Cabinet wages.
Director of University Affairs: Colleen McMahon is a junior studying accounting with three years of ASWSU experience. She has previously served as ASWSU Freshman Delegate and Senator. McMahon served as the Director of University Affairs for this past year and will continue to serve in this position for the 2017 – 18 year. McMahon will be the liaison between ASWSU and the University Administration, a student voice in committees, and help create University initiatives outlined in the Frost-Kalt platform.
Director of Communication: Mitchell Weholt is a sophomore studying strategic communication and has served as ASWSU Director of Communication this past year. In addition to ASWSU, Weholt is the IFC Director of Public Relations and has owned a creative freelance company for nearly a decade. As Director of Communication, Weholt will work with the Executive Cabinet to promote events, initiatives, and projects with comprehensive public relations campaigns.
Deputy Director of Communication: Zana Crites is a sophomore studying journalism and media production. Crites works as the Marketing and Social Media Coordinator for WSU Office of Admissions and serves as a Residential Advisor. As Deputy Director of Communication, Crites will work with the Director of Communication to create content, write and publish press releases, and manage social media.
Director of Legislative Affairs: Matthew Morrow is a junior studying political science with an emphasis in pre-law. He has previously drafted legislation and has policy experience as an ASWSU senator. As Director of Legislative Affairs, Morrow will act as the student voice in Olympia by connecting with legislators and ensuring that students’ best interests are realized by policymakers.
Deputy Director of Legislative Affairs: Parker Blekkenk is a sophomore studying neuroscience and has served as Associate Director of Legislative Affairs for the past year. As Deputy Director of Legislative Affairs, he will work with the Director of Legislative Affairs to ensure the WSU Pullman campus is civically active, as well as assist in planning Coug Day at the Capitol.
Director of Community Affairs: Joe Kurle is a junior studying strategic communication with a minor in business administration. He previously served as president of his fraternity, Sigma Phi Epsilon. As a Pullman native, Kurle has developed strong connections with leaders of the Palouse. As Director of Community Affairs, Kurle will partner with Pullman stakeholders to advocate for students and build relationships with the Pullman community.
Director of Diversity and Inclusion: Jared Fluhrer is a junior studying animal sciences. Fluhrer is looking forward to utilizing his personal experiences to better the lives of the students at WSU. As Director of Diversity and Inclusion, Fluhrer will assist with the efforts of multicultural groups on campus. This will include organizing and planning events, such as the Multicultural Fundraising Banquet, CASHE, and VIBES.
Director of Wellness and Safety: Tyler O’Brien is a sophomore studying political science with a minor in Spanish. O’Brien serves as the IFC Director of Service and Philanthropy to coordinate community service and philanthropic events with the WSU fraternity community. As Director of Wellness and Safety, O’Brien will promote health and safety through education and awareness for all aspects of student life.
In addition to the executive staff members, the Frost-Kalt administration will create two committees within the Department of Wellness and Safety. Sexual Assault and Violence Prevention Education, led by Meghan Ranney, and Mental Health and Wellbeing, led by Alexander Kaprosy and Regan Donaldson. These committees will address specific safety issues on our campus, as well as focus on increasing the overall wellbeing of students.
“Not only are the candidates we selected all leaders in their own right, they are individuals who will grow and succeed in their roles,” Vice President-Elect Garrett Kalt said.
Moreover, this ASWSU administration has recognized transparency as a top priority. ASWSU is committed to providing in-depth press releases, an active social media presence, and an involved relationship with the student body.
“Communicating our operations and actions is absolutely necessary and something we will always strive to do,” Kalt said.
Frost and Kalt will present their executive staff candidates to ASWSU Senate for confirmation April 19. Contact Frost and Kalt with questions, comments or concerns:
Jordan Frost: firstname.lastname@example.org
Garrett Kalt: email@example.com