Silva-Wells campaign wins ASCSU presidential election

Haley Candelario

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President-elect Josh Silva embraces Strategic Relations manager Natasha Gordon as the ASCSU Elections Committee reveals his campaign won. (Natalie Dyer | Collegian)

Excitement and tears from the Silva-Wells campaign could not be contained as Josh Silva and Michael Wells were announced as the next presidential administration for the Associated Students of Colorado State University Wednesday night.

In an election that saw over 5,000 students cast their vote, the Silva-Wells campaign won the ASCSU presidency with a total of 1,440 votes from the student body. The Morton-Rosenthal campaign earned 1,385 votes while the Bohn-Syron campaign and Kendall-Merline campaign earned 1,350 votes and 974 votes respectively.

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Silva, ASCSU President-Elect, said it is a dream come true for him to be the next president of ASCSU. 

“This is surreal. This is a dream come true, in college at least,” Silva said. “I’m just really glad that we won and that we will have the opportunity to help students and serve them, and make sure that we can include everybody and make sure that we can empower students.”

Wells, ASCSU Vice President-Elect, said the campaign team worked long hours to achieve their win.

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Vice-President Elect Michael Wells (left) and Campaign Manager Christina Vessa (right) share an embrace before the announcement of the ASCSU elections on April 5. (Natalie Dyer | Collegian)

“These last three days have been 7 a.m. to 11 p.m., just non-stop,” Wells said. “I’m beyond excited. I’m so happy that we can do this because we can get in there, and hopefully start right away on making these initiatives happen for students.”

Communication between members of ASCSU and the student body and advancing technology were two of the main pillars of the Silva-Wells campaign. Silva and Wells plan to make the ASCSU offices more welcoming to students and make mobile apps, such as RamRide, more accessible and easy to use.

Silva and Wells believe they will fulfill their campaign promises because they care about the students.

“We talk about helping students all the time and being that voice, and that’s what I care about,” Silva said. “It’s just great that we can make this a reality. We can actually do the things that we said we want to do.”

Christina Vessa, the Silva-Wells campaign manager, said the campaign’s win came down to the last hour of campaigning on the Plaza.

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Campaign Manager Christina Vessa cheers after hearing the results of the ASCSU election on April 5. (Natalie Dyer | Collegian)

“We were running people down on the Plaza,” Vessa said. “I can’t tell you how many times I said that pitch of the campaign platforms. I’m probably going to say it in my sleep tonight, but the reason I got behind Josh and Michael is because I knew that they are invested in feasible change, they have the experience to make a difference and they truly, truly care.”

Kaleigh Maxwell, Director of Marketing & Multimedia Outreach for the Silva-Wells campaign, said she was passionate about the campaign from the start.

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“Every day that I worked on the campaign, I learned more and more about them. I was impressed more and more about them,” Maxwell said. “I told every single person who I think I chased down, ‘The reason I’m telling you this is because I’ve never been so passionate about something, and I’ve never believed in two people so much.'”

As he held back tears, Cole Wise, the chief of staff for the Silva-Wells campaign, said he was proud of the campaign and of the bond that formed between members of the campaign team.

“I couldn’t be prouder of this campaign and the campaign staff,” Wise said. “We’ve grown as a family the past couple of months getting ready for this. I’m proud to have worked for them, and I know that they will fulfill everything that they promised to do because that’s what this campagin was built on.”

Presidential candidates Hailey Morton and Edward Kendall congratulated the Silva-Wells campaign for their win.

Kendall said he was proud of Silva and Wells even though his campaign did not win the election.

“It didn’t go the way we wanted, but I can say I’m really proud,” Kendall said. “Michael and Josh will do good by this organization and good by students.”

Nick Bohn and Tristan Syron did not wish to comment at this time, but Syron said the Silva-Wells campaign did an overall good job, and he was not upset about their win. 

Isabel Brown won the position for speaker of the senate with 1,841 votes from the student body. The remaining two candidates for speaker of the senate earned 1,403 votes and 1,253 votes respectively. 

Brown said she had some doubt about winning, but was pleasantly surprised by the result. 

“It was really nerve-wracking waiting for the results, but they came out great,” Brown said. “I’m really just looking forward to increasing more of a professional community and culture going forward with the senators that were selected for next year.”

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President-Elect Josh Silva and Vice President-Elect Michael Wells embrace outside the Senate Chambers before the announcement of the ASCSU elections. (Natalie Dyer | Collegian)

Speaker of the Senate candidates Jennifer Murray and Bayler Shubert congratulated Brown on her win and said they are looking forward to being ASCSU senators next year.

“We made sure … that it was a very similar campaign for everyone because I know we’re going to be working together in senate,” Shubert said. “We’re all here to make sure that senate is a great place. I’m happy for Isabel, and I’m looking forward to being involved in ASCSU in any way I can.”

Collegian reporter Haley Candelario can be reached at news@collegian.com or on Twitter @H_Candelario98.