Noah Wills confirmed as new speaker of Undergraduate Senate
Wills will replace Speaker Dante Bucci
The twelfth Undergraduate Senate had its first meeting of this year's session on Oct. 23 and voted to elect Elections Commissioner Noah Wills as its speaker.
Wills’ election is unlike that of the past four speakers, Dante Bucci, Gabriel Unruh, Will Mascaro and Lars Emerson, all of whom were previously senators.
The election began with nominations from senators. Senator Spencer Hurwtiz nominated Senator Haley Lickstein, while Senator Trevor Pugh nominated Elections Commissioner Noah Wills.
Each candidate spoke in front of the senate for five minutes on why they should vote for the respective candidate.
Lickstein, a sophomore, spoke about her experience as a senator since her freshman year at AU. She also spoke about her position as chair of the Committee on Campus Life and as a member of the Finance Committee.
“I have served under the leadership of two different speakers and I’ve had the opportunity to see first hand what does and does not work in this body,” Lickstein said during the meeting. “I have seen the potential that this group has and I’m prepared to put in the work and effort to push this twelfth Undergraduate Senate to be the best and most impactful one yet.”
Wills spoke about joining SG last year as a sophomore on the Joint Committee on Elections Policy and continuing with SG this year as the chair of that committee.
He also highlighted four main points that he would bring as speaker. His first point was facilitating advocacy in the senate and challenging senators to make change. His other points included filling empty seats within SG, devoting his time and knowledge to the senate and using his previous experiences to better the senate.
“My vision for the senate can be summed up in one word: productivity,” Wills said during the meeting. “My experience, besides learning the rules of debate decorum, has shown me that sometimes this body is highly unproductive.”
Senators asked questions of both candidates after they finished speaking. The candidates moved outside while the senate debated and voted.
Some senators were concerned that Wills would not represent the will of the student body since his former position, Elections Commissioner, isn’t an elected office.
“Most speakers, if you look at the real senate, get elected and they’ve been voted by the citizens whereas Noah has not been elected so I just feel like I don’t know how he can represent the student body,” Hurwtiz said during the debate.
After the debate concluded, the Senate moved to vote, selecting Wills with the necessary 12 or more votes needed.
“[I am] feeling great,” Wills said. “I thank Haley for being such a good partner in this the whole time and I look forward to what we can do this year.”
Eleventh Undergraduate Senate Speaker Dante Bucci said he believes that Wills will do well as the new speaker.
“I think everything will end up being alright,” Bucci said. “I have full confidence in the group that is in charge now within the senate and I think it will work out well.”