Monday evening ASB Attorney General Rob Pillow announced that the ASB Senate would begin formally accepting input from student body representatives regarding a new name for the homecoming personality election, once called “Colonel Reb.”
Following the controversy surrounding the decision of the previous ASB Judicial Council to rename the disputed title “Mr. Ole Miss,” Pillow and the present ASB administration have worked to increase student body input in policymaking.
In a written statement provided to The DM, Pillow emphasized the current ASB administration’s commitment to accountable progress.
“The conclusion that I and my administration have reached regarding the process followed by Judicial on their ruling is that any disagreement about the process leading to the decision regarding titles in personality elections resulted from ambiguities in the ASB Constitution,” wrote Pillow.
“The current ASB administration will focus on addressing the problems in the Constitution in order to better incorporate the voice of the students into the ASB and the decisions that may come in the future.”
Pillow affirmed that the ASB governing board will continue to revise the ASB Constitution in order to move forward in such a way as to maximize student input.
“For those students who were discouraged by the process, I want to assure you that we are working hard to rewrite the Constitution to ensure that the students or student representation have a stronger voice in future ASB decisions,” Pillow said in his statement.
Former ASB Judicial Chair Courtney Pearson said she feels that the resolution along with the new Senate initiatives represent a step in the right direction for the university.
“I think that it’s a step in the right direction for Ole Miss to have a unified student body coming together to decide what they want our male personality election to be,” Pearson said.
Pearson encourages students to reach out to ASB representatives with ideas.
“This could very much be a process where students need to be involved,” Pearson said.
“It will be up to the students to approach their senators and voice their opinions on the new name.”
Pillow similarly asks that students involve themselves in the decision process by staying in touch with their elected representatives.
“I want to encourage students to express their opinions on this matter to their elected ASB senators,” Pillow wrote.
“As an administration, we want to hear the opinions of the students and the best way to do so is through the ASB Senate.”
As the bill does not specify a direct replacement for the title, ASB senators will be relying on the input of the community to amend the Constitution and label the position.
“Student opinions will ensure that that the entire student body is heard on this matter, and the ASB Senate will do their best to accurately represent the students in this decision,” Pillow wrote.