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GRCC President Bill Pink discusses Board of Trustees election mix-up during Thursday’s Student Alliance meeting

Courtesy of GRCC Student Alliance.

By Jack Hervela

Grand Rapids Community College President Bill Pink was a guest at the Nov. 29 Student Alliance town hall meeting where he updated representatives of campus student organizations on the recent Board of Trustee election controversy.

Pink informed those in attendance about the confusion surrounding GRCC’S recent Board of Trustees election which saw the Kent County Board of Canvassers miscount votes, thus leading to two different outcomes with a false declaration of victory.

“Just this week, when it all hit the news, what was found out is that after they said Carlos (Sanchez) and Kathy (Crosby) were the winners, they came back to the county and said ‘we were wrong,’ it is actually Kathy (Crosby) and Sheryl Siegel,” Pink said.

The misstep in counting came from Barry County as Sheryl Siegel received 2,444 votes, yet was only credited with 244 votes. Pink said he is hopeful the official recount, which will definitively state the winners, will be finished by the end of the semester.

Pink also talked about the upcoming homecoming which will coincide with the reopening of GRCC’s Ford Fieldhouse.

“We’re going to build the rededication around that facility, we hope to have some of president Ford’s family on campus for that rededication of the fieldhouse and make a big deal out of that week,” Pink said.

Native American Student Organization President Drewyn Talley introduced a revised resolution to celebrate and recognize Indigenous Peoples Day alongside Columbus Day on campus.

After polling over 200 students on campus through multiple surveys, NASO saw the need to push for celebration of Indigenous Peoples Day alongside Columbus Day instead of excluding either or.

“It couldn’t be discounted, all voices should be concerned in this,” Drewyn said, continuing, “This is how change gets made, by talking.”

The resolution provides a clear explanation of the goals of Indigenous Peoples Day, stating, “In 1990, representatives from 120 indigenous nations at the First Continental Conference… unanimously passed a resolution… to inspire the collective consciousness of these United States, opening wider a window of knowledge about pre-existing indigenous cultures.”

Running shorter than usual, the meeting also touched on upcoming events from other student organizations.

The Campus Activities Board will be holding a Fall Finals Relaxer from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 5 in the Raider Grille with massages, boba tea and various animals.

From 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. in room 168 of the Applied Technology Center building, the Hispanic Student Organization will be holding a Pachanga, a Hispanic cultural event featuring music, a keynote speaker and other culturally enriching activities.

Student Alliance will be holding a leadership board from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 6 in room 20 of the Student Center. Video of the town hall meeting can be found here.