Frank elected SGA Speaker

A fresh, feminine face has assumed the role of Speaker of the House on the SGA Senate.

Junior Mandy Frank of the Committee on Legislative Action (COLA) was elected Speaker of the Student Government Association (SGA) last Tuesday night.

President James “Jay” Taylor nominated senators Mandy Frank, Ryan Krodel and current Speaker Michael Glynne.

However, Taylor and vice president Josh Miller did not choose to endorse an individual candidate, Taylor said.

“Jay and I are completely removed from the speaker debate,” Miller said.

“The speaker is elected by Senate and works for Senate,” Taylor said, “so it didn’t make sense that we, as non-voting members of Senate, should have anything to do with the decision.”

Before the election, former SGA president Kesha Ram said she felt that each of the candidates was qualified.

“Glynne has a year of experience and lessons learned,” she said, “while Ryan is a really approachable and nice person and Mandy has already tried to serve in a moderating role for the past three years on Senate.”

Frank, Krodel and Glynne were asked by Taylor to give a brief speech on why they felt that they would best fill the role of speaker.

Krodel spoke first and said that he would do work for the entire Senate.

He also said that because he took his committee, Public Relations, from two to six members and helped it to blossom into a more efficient body that he was capable of serving as the speaker.

Glynne spoke next and said that the role of speaker is a very difficult job and keeping order in Senate is a necessary task.

“I have used the gavel a lot this year because I am a person willing to stand up to people talking and people out of order,” he said.

Finally, Frank gave her reasons for running.

She said that because she had been on Senate for two years and served as the minute-taker for one that she was ready for a position on the executive board.

Frank also mentioned her “extraordinary time managing skills” and ability to “keep a good balance” and be “very fair.”

“I feel it is my calling at this point in my senatorial career,” she said. “I think I’m going to do a really good job if I’m elected.”

After the speeches were given, members of Senate were then permitted to ask questions pertaining to all three nominees.

Senator Emma Kennedy, chair of the Committee on Diversity, Equity and Environmental Ethics (CODEEE) asked the candidates about the sacrifices and benefits they would experience as a result of giving up their voices on Senate.

Frank answered first and said that she considered herself a loud voice on Senate, but looked forward to giving other voices the opportunity to stand out.

“I find myself not wanting to listen sometimes on Senate,” she said, “but a benefit I foresee is listening more adamantly, [along with] giving everyone a fair chance.”

When there were no more questions, the Senate automatically went into executive session to debate and vote on a speaker.

“We had a bunch of debate, voted which candidate to eliminate and debated more,” Taylor said.

An election was held between the two remaining candidates, but no clear winner was chosen, Taylor said, because one must receive at least 2/3 of the votes.

After more debating, another election was held using secret ballots in order to protect senators from going against friends and choosing who they felt was the best candidate, he said.

When the votes were counted and re-counted by Taylor and Miller, Frank had earned 22 out of 32, Taylor said.

The three candidates were asked to return to the meeting and Frank was then congratulated, he said.

Glynne gave Frank a hug before swearing her in as the new speaker; he then took his seat on Senate, Taylor said.

Former speaker Glynne was not upset about losing the election; he will serve on COLA for the 2008-2009 term, while Krodel will continue to serve as the chair for Public Relations.

“I’m happy for her,” Glynne said, “It’s an honor to be elected speaker and I think she’ll do a good job.”

President Taylor, vice president Miller and other members of Senate agree that Frank will do well in the role of speaker.

“[Frank] will do great things,” Miller said. “She has great knowledge of debate and she will be an excellent mediator. President Taylor and I are really looking forward to working with her.” “I think Mandy is going to be a great speaker,” Senator Tyler Van Backer of COLA said. “It’s comforting to know the Senate is in good hands.”

Frank also said that her victory felt like a good fit.

“I was up against great candidates,” she said. “I was nervous.”

“[But] you know when you feel something is right…that’s how this feels.”