USG bill proposes merging executive positions

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USG bill plans to merge two existing Chief of Staffs and Operations and Risk Manager into one new role: Executive Chief of Staff. The Executive Chief of Staff would be paid at “Median of Class III” status.  Photo by The Daily Campus/File Photo

USG bill plans to merge two existing Chief of Staffs and Operations and Risk Manager into one new role: Executive Chief of Staff. The Executive Chief of Staff would be paid at “Median of Class III” status. Photo by The Daily Campus/File Photo

A revised University of Connecticut Undergraduate Student Government bill written by School of Business Senator and Internal Affairs Vice Chair Luis Toscano and Deputy Comptroller Stuart Allen would merge the two existing Chief of Staffs as well as the Operations and Risk Manager into one, new role: Executive Chief of Staff.  

According to the bill, the Executive Chief of Staff would provide “oversight of members of the Office of the President” and plan and executive USG initiatives.  These would be the two “compensable functions specific to the position.”   

Walter Dodson is the current Chief of Staff to President Priyanka Thakkar.  Brady Harman is the current Chief of Staff to Vice President Manny Chinyumba.  Grace Brangwynne is the current Operations and Risk Manager. 

The bill was first introduced and passed in the spring of 2019, according to current USG President Priyanka Thakkar.   

“The document which was passed last year was inadequate and the senate took this past year to reflect on missing pieces and essentials,” Thakkar said. 

The bill is an overall update to member compensation.  If passed, positions available for pay would be: President, Vice President, Comptroller, Speaker of the Senate, Primary Committee Chairperson, Funding Student Staff Supervisor, Chief Justice, Executive Chief of Staff, Inventory Director, Public Relations Director, Elections Oversight Commissioner, a member of the Funding Student Staff, a member of the Student Organization Center Staff and a member of the Public Relations Team. 

Thakkar expressed concerns about the potential changes, namely to the new role of Executive Chief of Staff. 

“I am hesitant (about) combining what took three positions (President of Chief of Staff, Vice President Chief of Staff and Operations and Risk Manager) this year into now, one position,” Thakkar said.  “It’ll be up for the next chief of staff to see how they can effectively organize and maneuver all duties which are needed.”  

The bill was sponsored by Towers Senator Palakjot Bedi.    

The Executive Chief of Staff would be paid at “Median of Class III” status. 


Luke Hajdasz is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at luke.hajdasz@uconn.edu.

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