Last week, LUCC held its annual election for president and vice president. Junior James Duncan-Welke won LUCC president, and junior Jeff Solberg, the only candidate for the position, won vice president.The elections took place Wednesday, Jan. 23 through 11:59 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 26, after a week of postponement due to lack of student interest. As of the original deadline for declaring candidacy, 11:59 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 14, Duncan-Welke was unopposed.
After Dean Nancy Truesdell’s e-mail announcement regarding the extension of the deadline, freshman Casey Shaw circulated a petition and was subsequently added to the ballot.
President-elect Duncan-Welke feels ambivalent about the extended deadline.
“On the one hand, I recognize LUCC’s reasoning and understand their course of action. In a democratic system like we have at Lawrence, it does seem rather strange that only one candidate should run for each major executive position,” said Duncan-Welke.
“Confirming the two candidates without an official election — or even holding an election in which both candidates ran unopposed — would have stunk of corruption and cronyism in the eyes of the public. It’s therefore not difficult to understand why LUCC moved to assure the legitimacy of the electoral process by ensuring that voters would have a free and democratic choice for president.”
However, he attributes the poor attendance at the LUCC candidate forum and the overall low voter participation to the extended deadline.
As the new president, Duncan-Welke wants to “raise LUCC’s profile” within the Lawrence community. “No one knows what we do or how we do it,” he said. “It’s vitally important that students know how much LUCC can do for them, and how many things they take for granted that LUCC actually has a hand in.” Furthermore, he wants to increase communication between LUCC and **The Lawrentian**, in an effort to increase LUCC’s visibility.
Duncan-Welke was “glad to be elected” and said, “I’m committed to helping people understand how LUCC affects their daily lives, and also to helping people engage in LUCC so they can help us conduct our business in a way which makes the campus community better off.”
Duncan-Welke encourages interested parties to submit their applications for LUCC Cabinet positions. Students can obtain more information by e-mailing Duncan-Welke at duncanwj (at) lawrence.edu.