The Student Action Coalition rode a record turnout in to a complete sweep in the candidate elections, taking all four executive offices and winning every one of the 23 seats it contested.
The newly elected executive officers are Chrystine Lawson as A.S. president, Isabel Millan as external vice-president for statewide affairs (EVPSA), Deanna Kavanaugh-Jones as external vice-president for local affairs (EVPLA), and Sunbo Bamigboye as internal vice-president.
Six Gauchoholic candidates were elected to positions on A.S. Legislative Council, and S.A.C. will occupy the remaining 19 positions. No members of the Campus Engagement Group or candidates who ran independently were elected.
Lawson and several other S.A.C. members were in downtown Santa Barbara at a benefit concert when she heard the news, and said she was pleasantly surprised with the S.A.C. victories.
“Everyone at the bar started cheering when I told them,” she said. “I was preparing for the worst, but our organization really paid off.”
The S.A.C. platform was based on a ten-point plan that included giving adequate funding to environmental student groups, involving A.S. in outreach work and working with the Isla Vista Tenants Union to obtain affordable housing.
The victory was bittersweet as the elected officers considered the budget crisis facing A.S. next year, newly elected Off-campus Rep. Alexis Krieg said.
“I’m really torn right now,” she said. “I want to celebrate because a lot of good people just won, but the A.S. fee didn’t pass. And it’s going to be a lot to deal with next year.”
Kavanaugh-Jones, who won by the largest margin with 62 percent of the vote, said she was “shocked” with the amount of victories her party attained.
“It’s just amazing that we all got into office,” she said. “That was something that none of us expected to happen.”
As EVPLA, Kavanaugh-Jones plans to focus on issues such as housing and the environment and said having a majority of S.A.C. members elected should promote unity within Leg Council.
“This is something that we’ve always kind of dreamed,” she said. “Anyone who has ever watched a Leg Council meeting knows how divided it is and that now having a party that kind of has similar beliefs and a lot of core issues about who we are will be a lot easier to run Legislative Council.”
Millan said she was both excited and overwhelmed by her victory and hopes to get some “really awesome people” appointed to committees within A.S.
“I’m definitely going to try and make sure that all the committees under my office work together,” she said.
Maggie Stack, the Gauchoholic candidate for president, finished second with 30 percent of the vote, and said she wished the A.S. Initiative had passed.
“It’s a shame that students don’t recognize that the benefits of being a part of this campus come from the base fee,” she said. “And I’m sorry that A.S. will be hurting next year so severely due to a lack of funds.”
Stack said she would like to stay active in A.S. next year, but said the president will determine the extent of her contribution.
“Certainly I will still be involved in [Shoreline Preservation Fund] and I’ll be looking to get involved in other ways,” she said.
Lawson said she does not want students outside of S.A.C. to feel excluded from A.S., despite the party’s large majority.
“I’m excited for the potential of S.A.C.,” she said, “but I’m also aware that it can be alienating for students from other parties. I’m going to talk to folks we ran against to get their input as well.”