By Dexter LeRuez and Gabriela Silva Ponte
The Toronto Metropolitan Students’ Union (TMSU) interim Board of Directors (BoD) was revealed at the April BoD meeting on Saturday.
The BoD passed a motion to ratify the interim Board, which will serve from May 1 to Nov. 3 according to the postings for vacancies on the TMSU’s website.
Earlier in April, the Elections and Referenda Committee (ERC) ruled the results of the 2023 election to be “invalid” following an investigation into misconduct, as previously reported by The Eyeopener. A byelection is set to take place in the fall.
According to section 4.17 of the TMSU’s bylaws, if a vacancy takes place during May, June or July a byelection must be held in September.
“Until the vacancy is filled, the Executive Committee may designate an interim Director to fill the vacant office subject to board approval,” the bylaw reads.
Applications for interim roles were open until April 16 and interviews took place between April 20 and 28, according to an appointment report sent to The Eye by ERC member Kian Rastegar.
The report states that interviews for interim executive positions were scheduled for 45 minutes, whereas interviews for interim director positions were scheduled for 20 minutes.
According to the report, there were four candidates who ran for the position of interim president.
President Marina Gerges was hired for the interim position despite not being re-elected in the TMSU’s general 2023 decision, as previously reported by The Eye.
“Careful consideration was given to ensure that bias was not included in the application requirements,” the appointment report reads.
Rastegar announced at the BoD meeting that some who applied for certain vacancies were not hired for their preferred position but were instead appointed for a different role.
The Appointment Committee was composed of three voting members: one member of the ERC, one member of the management staff and the Chief Returning Officer or a legal representative.
During the 2023 elections and hiring process, the ERC was composed of Rastegar, vice president operations Spyros Zarros, Faculty of Community Services director Alisha Kweon and Chief Returning Officer (CRO) Adrian Aziz, according to an election report sent to The Eye.
The current CRO is Cherie Daniel who stepped into the role effective April 1, after serving as Deputy Returning Officer.
According to the election report, the member of management staff refers to executive director Reanna Maharaj or director of programming Corey Scott.
Here is your 2023 interim TMSU executive team:
President: Marina Gerges
VP Operations: Nathan Sugunalan
VP Education: Sherry Pourghaz*
VP Equity: Ra’eesa Baksh
VP Student Life: Shahram Farhadi
Interim Board of Directors Faculty Representatives:
Faculty of Arts (Two seats)
Maria Eula Faye Beltran
The Creative School (Two seats)
Faculty of Community Services (Two seats)
Faculty of Engineering and Architectural Science (Two seats)
Faculty of Science (Two seats)
Ted Rogers School of Management (Two seats)
Lincoln Alexander School of Law (Two seats)
International (One Seat)
*A previous version of this article listed this source under a different name but has since been updated to reflect the source’s preferred identification.