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Todd Harris '14.5 to lead Undergraduate Council of Students

Harris beat Afia Kwakwa '14 in a run-off, receiving 54 percent of the vote

Todd Harris ’14.5 will be president of the Undergraduate Council of Students next year, winning 54 percent of the vote to defeat Afia Kwakwa ’14 in a run-off election.

UCS President Anthony White ’13 announced the results on the Faunce steps Thursday evening.

The run-off was employed because in the first round of voting last week — which also included candidate Daniel Pipkin ’14 — no candidate received a majority.

In the run-off voting period, which lasted from Tuesday at noon to Thursday at noon, 2,928 undergraduates voted through an emailed Qualtrics survey, White said. This marked an increase from the 2,008 students who participated in the first voting period.

“I’m so happy,” Harris said. “I’m excited to follow up on my platform.”

Harris said he ran a vigorous campaign during the second voting period, talking to many students and getting feedback on his goal to improve advising.

Harris added that he looks forward to focusing on the “top three” initiatives of his platform — in addition to improving advising, he aims to strengthen student-alumni partnerships and expand community initiatives — as president next year.

Kwakwa said she plans on joining the council next year as a general body member. She added that she will continue to push for the council to pursue parts of her platform, such as ensuring quality hydration facilities and improving the council’s transparency to the student body.

“I’m very glad Todd is president,” said Leila Veerasamy ’15, who won the race for chair of the Undergraduate Finance Board against Alex Sherry ’15 in last week’s election.

“We get along really well,” Veerasamy said. “It’s going to be very helpful for UCS-UFB relations.”

“I know Todd is going to do an amazing job as UCS president,” White said.

White said he was “heartened” by the increased voter turnout — about 48 percent of undergraduates — in this year’s election. Though Brown has historically faced lower voter turnout in student government elections than other Ivy League schools, the turnout this year “puts us more in line with our peers,” he said.

White said he will make himself available to Harris to advise him in his new role.

“Any time he needs me, he can pick up the phone,” White said.


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