The Associated Students of Madison Nominations Board Chair Steven Shi resigned at the student council’s biweekly meeting on Oct. 12.
The Nominations Board is responsible for filling most appointed positions in the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s student government body, including seats Grant Allocations Committee and Student Services Finance Committee (SSFC). Within the past two weeks, they have conducted interviews with the applicants and decided who this fall’s nominees will be.
At the meeting, there were accusations about a biased nomination process. Members expressed they felt like multiple candidates were favored by Shi and that the process made them feel uncomfortable.
Multiple members of the board conveyed that they had concerns about nominees having an unfair advantage due to social ties with Shi. Some members did not feel that they could vote in support of the nominees with peace of mind.
As a result, Shi decided it was best to leave his position as Nominations Board Chair allowing a different student to be in leadership.
“I express my deep regret for the situation at hand, and again, I am sorry for the part I played in causing this situation,” said Shi in his resignation letter.
During nominee interviews over the past two weeks Katie Mangus, Ethan Dickler and Tyler Katzenberger resigned due to biased nominations, hostile behavior and an unwelcoming environment.
“The reason we all resigned was because we felt so strongly that these nominations were going to be biased and unethical,” said former nomination board member Katie Mangus.
Magnus expressed that the cause of her resignation was because “there is a long laundry list of issues that occurred.”
Shi, in his resignation letter, attributed this list to his, “lack of training, understanding of American English and the American workplace culture.”
“There was no transparency to any of us; what was going on, who was coming in next, when we had a break … the environment was just so hostile,” Mangus said about the nominations interview process.
At the Oct. 12 meeting, multiple board members expressed they had concerns about Shi’s leadership and felt as though their opinions were not being taken into account.
“We are just driving blind,” ex-Nominations Board member Ethan Dickler said. “We are looking for leadership, and it’s just not there.”
After multiple debates and an individual vote, all of the fall 2022 nominations were passed.
ASM will continue to receive regular training and reminders on misconduct to better themselves as an organization according to ASM Vice Chair Reez Bailey.
Ultimately, Shi took responsibility for wrongdoings as chair of the student govenment committee.
“The operation of the Nominations Board has been greatly disturbed and I believe I bear a certain amount of responsibility for causing that disturbance,” said in his resignation letter.
Shi will continue serve as an elected member of both ASM and the SSFC. His resignation from the Nominations Board will take effect on Oct. 26.
Editor's note: Tyler Katzenberger is the Daily Cardinal's State News Editor.