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RSU 2020 election sees Ali Yousaf as new president, Rise slate sweeps exec positions

By Alexandra Holyk and Sarah Krichel

Ali Yousaf was elected president of the Ryerson Students’ Union (RSU) for the 2020-21 academic year. Yousaf won against presidential candidate from slate “Inspire” Charmaine Reid by a total of 109 votes, receiving 510 and 401 respectively.

Yousaf will lead an executive team consisting entirely of candidates who ran from the “Rise” slate. The four other elected executives are Liora Dubinsky as vice-president operations, Vaishali Vinayak as vice-president equity, Siddhanth Satish as vice-president education and Usama Sheikh as vice-president student life and events.

A debate took place Tuesday where both slates’ campaign platforms were shared.

Now-incumbent president Yousaf is known among many students for his involvement with former RSU president Ram Ganesh‘s slate during his presidential run. Ganesh was impeached after alleged financial mismanagement last academic year.

Yousaf is also known for his involvement in the alleged financial mismanagement pertaining to the 6 Fest concert, which took place in 2017. A portion of the money meant for refunding students who couldn’t attend the concert went into the personal bank accounts of Harman Singh, the then-vice-president student life and events, as well as Ali Yousaf, who was a finance committee member then and RSU vice-president operations in 2017-18. Ganesh also had 6 Fest refund money transferred into his account.

A total of five board member positions were won by the slate “Inspire,” which were two arts board members, two faculty of communication & design board members and a community services board member.

Another community services board member position was won by independent candidate Dusty Luck.

This election comes after Ryerson terminated its operating agreement with the student union on Jan. 24 for not fulfilling its part of the contract. What followed was a legal claim filed by the RSU against Ryerson. Their claim calls for $2,700,000 in damages for breach of contract, the release of the student fees withheld by the university, $100,000 in punitive damages and a declaration that Ryerson is in breach of its agreement with the RSU.

Voting was held in the Student Campus Centre from Feb. 12-14. Unlike last year, students weren’t able to vote online and instead were required to use paper ballots.

The results were said to be released at 9 p.m. but because counting took hours longer than expected, according to James Fotak, current vice-president operations, results were not tallied until 4 a.m. Saturday.

According to Fotak, a total of 965 students cast a ballot in the RSU election this week.

Here is your 2020-21 RSU team:

President: Ali Yousaf — Rise

Vice-president operations: Liora Dubinsky — Rise

Vice-president equity: Vaishali Vinayak — Rise

Vice-president education: Siddhanth Satish — Rise

Vice-president student life and events: Usama Sheikh — Rise


Arts (3)

Alexandra Nash — Inspire 

Gabriele Douglas — Inspire 

Anika Zaman — Rise

Engineering and Architecture (3)

Zain Choudhry — Rise 

Umar Abdullah — Rise 

Salar Syed — Rise

Faculty of Communication & Design (3) (acclaimed)

Ashan Mahendran — Inspire

Aidan Falkenberg — Rise

Ton Cassie — Inspire

Ted Rogers School of Management (5)

Akif Anwar — Rise 

Hilla Yaniv — Rise

Homra Ghaznavi — Rise 

Abaan Ahmed — Rise

Preet Patel — Rise

Community Services (3)

Steph Rychlo — Inspire 

Sabrina Ahmed — Rise

Dusty Luck — independent

Science (2) (acclaimed)

Kajetha Jeyapalan — Rise

Elwad Gedleh — Rise

International student representative

Amr Shaikh — Rise

More to come.


RSU audit committee finds an additional $99,477 unverified in last year’s expenditures

RSU elections debate: Future of union, transparency and finances

Update: Ryerson announces next steps for new student government

The Ear-Opener: How the fuck do we fix our student union?

6 Fest investigation a ‘dead end’


  1. Tyler

    I don’t think anybody even knew there was an election. No obvious signage around campus or anything. Re election please.

  2. Joseph Pilch

    Stack the vote with no notice….revote!

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