GSB election kicks off, three presidential candidates running


Brian Achenbach/Iowa State Daily

Adam Guenther, GSB election commissioner, talks to a student who is interested about running for a position in the GSB. 

David Gerhold

The election committee officially kicked off the Government of Student Body elections Jan. 23. So far, around 45 students are considering running for the general election in March.

“Last year, we didn’t have that many candidates, so we really tried this year to reach out to different student groups,” said Adam Guenther, election commissioner and senior in animal science.

Guenther said he hopes that the election committee can get at least 30 of the interested students to run.

“There are a lot of people that I don’t know, and that will make for an interesting dynamic this year,” Guenther said.

Guenther said last year marked a change for a lot of people in GSB.

“The Senate was not walking so well, and we hope for a bigger turnout than last year because last year was really bad,” Guenther said.

Three candidates are running for GSB president this year. They include Hillary Kletscher, senior in biological systems engineering, Khayree Fitten, sophomore in political science and Richard Martinez, freshman in journalism and mass communication.

“My team wants to continue to advocate for minimal tuition and fee increases as well as better long-term housing options for students,” Kletscher said. “We want to make sure that the students have their needs provided for on the university level.”

Kletscher, who last year served as GSB vice president, said she wants to work with student organizations and actually open up the GSB funding to all student organizations on campus.

“GSB already funds some student organizations with a narrow focus, but we feel that every student organization should at least be eligible to receive these funds, as well,” Kletscher said. “We need to listen to their needs and find out what their concerns are.”

Fitten said he and his running team want to make sure that every student is impacted by every student fee dollar in the best way possible.

“That means doing things like providing free e-textbooks for large lecture classes, as well as going to the Board of Regents and working with them to provide financial aid and scholarships to students who have financial needs,” Fitten said.

Fitten said he will meet with student organizations and listen to their concerns and needs.

“And it’s not going to stop there, because we’re going to meet with them long after the campaign ends, no matter if we win or lose,” Fitten said.

Martinez’s primary goal will be to create and streamline procedures to get people on campus interconnected and make things run a lot more smoothly.

“I think what makes me stick out the most is the fact that I’m a freshman,” Martinez said. “That’d be pretty astounding of an accomplishment for a freshman to be elected as president of the GSB.”

Martinez said he’s had some campus involvement and leadership positions, currently with Residence Hall Council.

“I’d like to extend my outreach further because this would be a great way to take the next step and get involved even more,” Martinez said.

The next major event in the election will be the vice presidential debate Feb. 17 followed by the presidential debate Feb. 27. Elections will take place March 4-5, and the winners will be announced Mar. 7.