“We got it!” “We’re done campaigning!”
A thick crowd cheered and consoled one another as election commissioner Brent Ferguson announced the results from the presidential and vice presidential runoff elections in front of the Lyceum Thursday night. Elam Miller won the vice presidential race with 58.04 percent of the vote, and Dion Kevin won the presidential race with 58.08 percent of the vote.
“We had almost 4,000 people vote, which is absolutely unbelievable,” Ferguson said.
Ferguson said the student body voted in almost identical proportions in both of Thursday’s elections. Miller and Kevin won their respective elections by an extremely similar margin, with only an eight-vote difference between the two tallies.
Kevin said over the last couple of months he was happy to see so many concrete examples of people unifying behind one common goal.
“When your friends decide to drop everything for you and do everything they can because you’re passionate about it, it’s really sweet,” Kevin said. “I’m ready to take that into office, keep up that excitement about loving each other and serving each other.”
Kevin’s sister, Reed Ashton Kevin, led his campaign along with campaign manager Daniel Reed. Reed Ashton said she was still feeling jitters after hearing the results, but now they were happy jitters.
“Despite being from different places, having different backgrounds and ethnicities, being Greek or non-Greek, we all are students here,” she said. “We all live in Oxford – it’s kind of our common ground.”
An Oxford native, Kevin ran on a platform of further unifying the campus and the city to make sure students’ voices are heard at both city hall and in the Lyceum.
“A lot of these students here at Ole Miss don’t really care about ASB a lot, but I got to see that they really cared about me, and it was really encouraging to see that,” Kevin said.
Vice President-elect Elam Miller said his message has been about making sure everybody has a voice on campus, and he is looking forward to helping senators reach out to the student body.
“I couldn’t have done it without these students,” Miller said. “Their support has meant the world to me.”
Black Student Union President Terrius Harris served as Hoffman’s campaign manager throughout the election season. He embraced Hoffman with her fellow supporters on the Lyceum steps as their campaign came to a close.
He said he felt the campaign brought up many important issues to the campus, and he hopes the conversation continues.
“It will be his job to uphold and fight for the rights of every person and every demographic on campus,” Harris said.
Kevin said Harris and the rest of Hoffman’s campaign had been especially encouraging to him in the last weeks of the race.
“Campaigns have a really good propensity for getting chippy and for spiteful things to happen,” Kevin said. “I was just really happy that I didn’t have to deal with any nonsense in that regard.”
After each campaign team reacted to the results, Kevin crossed the Lyceum steps, wading his way through Hoffman’s supporters to give her a hug.
“I was congratulating her on a great campaign and really thanking her for running a smooth campaign,” he said. “Tuesday Emily sent me a really, really sweet text just encouraging me and telling me how much she appreciated me, and I just had to tell her that I appreciated that.”
Kevin said he plans to hit the ground running his first day in office.
“We’re going to develop a plan to make sure we have a cabinet that’ll be effective and representative the student body,” he said. “We’re going to have a lot of preparation for the oncoming school year.”