CSU Judicial Board Looks Into CEO Appointment
The Concordia Student Union’s November referendum and byelection has been pushed back a week after the legitimacy of Chief Electoral Officer Bram Goldstein was called into question at a CSU Council meeting on Oct. 26.
After over an hour of closed session, council passed a motion to bring procedural complaints to the Judicial Board, an independent ruling body of the CSU.
The complaints involve former CEO Oliver Cohen’s status as a student at the time of Goldstein’s appointment, and whether or not Cohen had officially resigned when Goldstein was named his replacement.
Questionable hiring processes by last year’s Council, missing applications and no record of last year’s Appointment Committee holding a meeting to vet possible applicants were also complaints filed to the JB.
To “ensure the upcoming election would not be compromised,” Council moved to simultaneously open up a tentative hiring process in case the JB’s decision leaves the CSU without a CEO.
“[Cohen] told me he resigned at the meeting,” Goldstein—who acted as the Deputy Electoral Officer at last April’s CSU elections—said in the meeting. “He gave his resignation, he spoke to people, he gave a letter to the Chair, so I don’t even know why we’re having this discussion.
“I feel totally sandbagged,” he continued. “I was called at 5:00 p.m. on Oct. 26, two days before the deadlines for the announcement of polls. I’m working my ass off, taking four courses, I have no political interests, I’m doing this for the money, and I’m probably the only person in this school that is independent.”
Councillor April Underwood responded to Goldstein, stating that the decision reached by Council was not personal nor was it made as an indication of his performance to date, but that procedurally there were concerns that affected the legitimacy of the upcoming election.
“We’re super appreciative of the work you’ve done so far, and, to clarify, you’re still the CEO,” she said. “It doesn’t change until the JB looks at the circumstances surrounding the way you were hired. You’re still the CEO until the JB tells you you’re not, if that’s the case.”
“I think this is unacceptable. Why wasn’t this brought up with me [when they realized there was an issue?],” Goldstein demanded after the meeting.
While Council stated they acted in the “fairest way possible” and felt uncomfortable making a “unilateral decision” on the matter, Goldstein said he feels blindsided.
“I set up a meeting as soon as I could, until yesterday we didn’t have all the facts,” said CSU President Lex Gill, following the meeting. “We had to pull up an immense amount of records to be certain. We looked through everything.”
As it stands, the elections have been moved to Nov. 29, 30 and Dec. 1.