Alec Lintz doesn’t think he knows all of Duke’s problems. 

That’s why the junior’s campaign for executive vice president is built around communication, collaboration and culture change—to amplify the voices of those who know the problems best, he said.

“I’m not saying that I know everything that is wrong with Duke, and so as EVP I would try to create an atmosphere where there is more collaboration so that senators can collaborate,” Lintz said. “It’s not so much me pushing for what I want to do with this position. The only thing I want to do is to give those senators the potential to do what they want, like I wanted to when I was a first-year.”

A junior public policy major with a political science minor and a certificate in markets and management studies, Lintz became Duke Student Government’s director of communications two years ago. He also served as a senator for equity and outreach his first year and for residential life as a sophomore.

He said that the fact that the director of communications role was only added two years ago showed the organization's priorities.

“It’s been very internal—what we can do for ourselves, not what we can do for Duke. I think we need to change that,” Lintz said. “So that’s the culture change I’m talking about.”

In his current role as the director of communications, he helps the president design the weekly email blast and plans social media posts, in addition to working one-on-one with senators and vice presidents to publicize their projects and events. He established DSG’s communications team and started a “Senator of the Week” series to help students get to know their representatives. 

Lintz emphasized that being the bridge between the student body and their representatives has shown him how important it is to re-orient DSG as a service-minded organization, as opposed to a being a resume booster.

“I think DSG needs to be recognized more as a volunteer organization, and not an organization that looks good to employers or internships,” he said. “Because at the end of the day, it’s what you do at Duke that matters, not the position that you held. I think that DSG doesn’t recognize that.”

Coming from a religiously homogeneous high school in Houston, he wanted to help promote interfaith discussion on campus. As a first-year senator, he collaborated to help establish an interfaith prayer room on West Campus in the wake of the debate over whether the Muslim call to prayer should be sounded from the Chapel.

Lintz emphasized the managerial aspect of the EVP role, noting that the main focus of his campaign is helping others achieve their policy goals.

“I think an EVP needs to be a mentor and a friend to the first-year senators specifically, but basically any DSG member,” he said. "Part of that means that when you become EVP, you don’t have your own policy plans. I have a platform, but my platform is to allow collaboration to occur.”

Senior Tierney Pretzer became friends with Alec through their mutual involvement with Duke's Center for Political Leadership, Innovation and Service, and became close with him when they both worked in Washington, D.C. over the summer. 

She noted that his communication skills would be extremely important for improving DSG’s image to the student body.

“Not only can he help make policies, but he can help get them amplified across campus so that the people who are benefitting from them are actually aware of that,” she said.

Pretzer emphasized his hard work and commitment to all of his activities. She recounted the lengths he went to during the summer to meet her and go to a fireworks festival when the metro was down, including a long walk and an Uber.

But what really makes him stand out, she said, is his vision for leadership.

“I think one of my favorite things about Alec—unlike a lot of Duke students I know—is that he really sees positions of representation as positions of service,” Pretzer said. “He views being EVP as a way to channel his love for Duke and his ambition for what he sees Duke can be as a way of serving the community.”