The Duke Student Government senate elected sophomore Max Schreiber new chief justice.

Because the judiciary's former chief justice—senior Daniel Strunk—resigned Feb. 12, DSG considered several new candidates to fill the empty seat on the judiciary. Freshman Dana Raphael and sophomore Craig Vincent were selected by the judiciary committee as finalists, and the senate then voted to choose the new justice. Both candidates spoke to the senate about their motivations for running and qualifications. Raphael and sophomore Max Schreiber—a current member of the judiciary who has been holding the position of interim chief justice since Strunk's resignation—then competed for the chief justice position. Raphael withdrew her bid for chief justice and Schreiber was unanimously elected.

In his position as chief justice, Schreiber said he will attempt to get rid of clerks in the judiciary, which he considers purposeless. He also hopes to require a 24-hour period after a decision is taken before it can be written.

In response to a question about his role as executive vice president of the Interfraternity Council, Schreiber noted that his priorities will lie with whichever organization he is intended to represent should a situation involving both arise.

“Objectivity is a false premise, it doesn’t exist,” Schreiber said. “What’s important is that you can understand both sides.”

Raphael noted that she sees the role of the judiciary as a body that protects students’ rights and the DSG constitution. As a justice, she aims to “develop as the student body develops” and avoid making decisions based solely on past decisions.

“Growing up, as nerdy as this sounds, I spent all of my dinner conversations with my parents, who were both lawyers, making up cases and having to solve them,” Raphael said.

In high school, Raphael drafted legislation to repeal Virginia’s “Labor Day Law,” which was introduced by Delegate Bob Tata, and testified before the state’s House and Senate education committees. At Duke, she is a member of her house council, the Alexander Hamilton Society and Club Field Hockey.

“I was incredibly impressed with how poised she was, especially being a freshman,” said sophomore Lavanya Sunder, DSG vice president for services and a candidate for DSG President. “That shows a great deal of maturity.”


In other news:

The senate approved a resolution to support the creation of Project Arts, a pre-orientation program that will focus on the art community of Durham.

Representatives from LAUNCH—a group that aims to help student organizations achieve their full potential—announced their new spring retreat called The Amazing Launch, which will be fully funded and held at the US National White Water Center April 12. Fifty undergraduate students will be selected, and all leaders or prospective leaders are encouraged to apply.

The senate approved updates to the Student Organization Funding Committee bylaw that added DuArts as a bucket group—with a representative on SOFC—and allowed groups within a bucket to have the bucket organization present their budget.

SOFC granted status changes to three organizations—recognized status to the Physics Major Union, chartered status with the exception of selectivity to the Ballet Club and chartered status to the Human Powered Vehicle Challenge.

The senate granted $3,335.49 through SOFC to Blue Devils United for the annual Lavender Ball, which will be held April 4. The senate also granted $2,445.85 to the East Asia Nexus for Tibet in Film, which will take place in Griffith Auditorium April 1, and $1,775.00 to the Muslim Student Association for Islam Awareness Month which will run from March 19 to April 2.

The senate allocated $340 from the Legislative Discretionary account to Staff Appreciation Day, which will take place March 25 on the Bryan Center plaza. The event will include writing cards to staff, award ceremonies and signing banners that will be hung in front of Marketplace and the Penn Pavilion.