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Despite Resignation, VP Williams Remains Epitome of SA

12/01/2009

Below is a piece I wrote representing my feelings and views regarding the recent resignation of Ola Williams of his Executive VP position, which was submitted to the Sun as an opinion piece:

As a Freshman Representative, I’ve heard many things about the SA this last semester, both good and bad. After becoming elected, there have been some false stereotypes that I’ve been working tirelessly to prove wrong: that we don’t get much done, that we think we’re elite, or that we’re a bunch of students on our high horses looking down on everyone else. Yet after seeing all the good that’s been done by so many members, it seems as though no single person or action has quite resonated in the minds of both our constituents and our members then those of the recent Executive VP Ola Williams.

Williams’ quiet leadership has been a stabilizing force for members of the assembly, especially to newer members like myself, throughout the year. However, Williams’ true influence can be seen in how he represents the Assembly, and what he stands for. Williams himself remains nothing short of the manifestation of what the ideal Student Assembly member should be. Whether in the way he conducts himself, tries to represent the views of all of his constituents in every vote, or puts his views on the table truthfully, it seems as though Williams is the counter-example to all the critics of the SA. Are we truly a bunch of elite students looking down on the rest of the community? Williams doesn’t think so. On November 5th, I watched Williams show the courage to call out the entire assembly, and specifically himself on how we were dealing with representing the minority community with our actions. I’m not sure what a critic could say to that.

Williams’ latest move simply goes on to enhance this character. As he said himself while addressing the SA about his decision, “Men are not above the rules and law that they make, they are there for that reason, to keep men no matter how ‘powerful’ in their place so power is not corrupted”.  Due to extenuating circumstances (personal family reasons), Williams has been absent from the SA and school altogether, and as a result has missed the three consecutive SA meetings. According to Article 3.4 of the SA Charter, any member who misses three meetings in a row must vacate their position. Now the SA could have passed an amendment to incorporate the complication of such extreme causes, but Williams knows this would only affect future instances, not ones that have already occurred. Williams’ dedication to the compliance of the laws set forth by the SA is so strong that he believes it is worth losing his own title as the Executive Vice President just to uphold. Amidst accusations of selfishness and social opulence, Williams has again shown the morals and character that makes the SA what it is. I speak on behalf of myself, but hopefully for those of the rest of the SA, when I say it is a sad day to see one of the SA’s truly great leaders relinquish his position. However, it will not take a title for me, and hopefully the rest of the University, to recognize the leadership Williams provides, or the ideals he represents.

– Roneal Desai

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