DANIEL SMITH/THE HOYA
DANIEL SMITH/THE HOYA Reed Howard (SFS ’17)

Alongside the upcoming Washington, D.C. mayoral election, Nov. 4 will bring elections for the Advisory Neighborhood Commission 2E, which has two open student commissioner positions to represent the area in and around the university.

Kendyl Clausen (SFS ’16) and Reed Howard (SFS ’17) will commence campaigning together this week, each vying for a position in one of the two districts that encompass the university.

Clausen is running to represent the district including New South, Southwest Quad, Village A, Village C West and the Jesuit Residence, while Howard is positioned to represent Nevils, Alumni Square, Copley Hall, Harbin Hall, Village C East and Henle Village. Although technically uncontested, neither candidate received the requisite number of signatures over the summer to be officially on the ballot, requiring voters to write in their names come Election Day.

Originally from Pleasanton, Calif., Clausen is an international politics major. She said she hopes that adding her voice to the ANC would improve neighborhood relations and improve the perception of students in the community.

“One of the things that Georgetown University has the biggest problem with is its relationship with the general Georgetown neighborhood community. This is very unfortunate as we have a group of amazing people on campus, and the neighborhood pretty much only sees students during their nighttime activities,” Clausen said. “I want to help better this relationship as we have great groups of people in both sides. I think we would be able to get along better if we put more effort into it.”

Howard, also an international politics major, is a member of the Georgetown Improv Association, and he co-founded a program called the D.C. Leadership Workshop that provides leadership training to high school students in the District. He focused on the need to promote a student voice throughout the planning process of the campus construction projects.

“I decided that I wanted to run when students started to show a growing frustration over the lack of input that they were given in the process,” Howard said. “ANC plays a key role in the development and finalization of the planning process, and with the upcoming campus plan, I think that it is crucial that students are represented at every point of the negotiations.”

He also aims to address construction on campus through the role of commissioner.

“Issues, such as students not being able to take the quickest paths to class or even construction workers creating an environment where students feel unsafe, need to be addressed, as this campus will be under construction for the next few years,” he said. “We need to ensure that during this time of change, we create an environment where students will feel safe and there are as minimum impacts on student life as possible.”

COURTESY KENDYL CLAUSEN Kendyl Clausen (SFS ’16)
COURTESY KENDYL CLAUSEN Kendyl Clausen (SFS ’16)

Advisory Neighborhood Commissions were established in 1973 and granted citizens representation to other government bodies in the District. There are 37 ANCs around the District, each of which is designated by ward number and a separate letter. The Georgetown neighborhood, subdivided be ANC2E, which also includes Burleith and Hillandale.

The ANC meets twice a week. In addition to the student representatives, there are eight other ANC commissioners for Georgetown’s district. The ANC was heavily involved in the approval of the university’s housing plans, including in the designs of the Northeast Triangle.

ANC2E Vice Chair Bill Starrels stressed the importance of including the viewpoints of the students of the university in decision making processes.

“In the past we have had dedicated, hard-working bright young men and women who have given the ANC positive insights and have been important in shaping what we do. We have had excellent men and women serve, and I hope to keep building on this fine foundation,” Starrels said.

Dennis Quinn (COL ’15), who assumed the role of commissioner this summer from the graduating Peter Prindiville (SFS ’14), said a student commissioner should act as a public face for the student body to the community and vice-versa.

“It is crucial for Georgetown that if an unfortunate incident between student and non-student residents occurs, there be student commissioners available who can work between the parties to find a compromise,” Quinn said.

Outgoing student commissioner Craig Cassey (COL ’15) is confident that Howard and Clausen are prepared to take on this role.

“I hope, and am certain, that Reed Howard and Kendyl Clausen will bring an innovative mind to the commissioner role, will strive to continue fostering strong relationships with off-campus partners and will translate Georgetown University’s Jesuit values into their work for their constituents and for all D.C. residents [in Georgetown’s district] beyond the front gates,” Cassey said.

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