By: Rahem Hamid — Senior Political Correspondent
The Class of 2022 will head to the polls on Friday, November 20, to choose its class officers for its final two years at Sharon High. Thirteen candidates will be on the ballot for five positions.
Prior to 2019, all class officers and planning board members were elected for one-year terms. That changed when class advisors and Ms. Lisa Jolicoeur decided the system needed a change At the end of their sophomore year, classes will choose their elected representatives for two years. Class advisors felt that junior year boards do the vast majority of the work for senior year – it was only fair they saw it through without having to worry about an election. This policy was first implemented for the Class of 2021, whose board is now serving the second of their two-year term.
Incumbent class historian Daniel Okstein, who is the only officer running unopposed, sees value in at least one holdover from the previous group of officers. “We as officers have put in a lot of work this past year, so it’s good for some of the officers to be directly familiar with any previous planning,” he said.
Okstein says that this is the most important election for our class. “The biggest events have yet to come. We’re working very hard to make sure we have a Junior Prom for this year. And with this being a two-year term, we’re going to work as hard as we can to have a fantastic senior year,” he said.
Okstein serves as a 2022 class officer with Ciara McAuliffe, Kuhu Badgi, Amrik Eadara, and Deyan Kassev. All four are running for re-election against other students on Friday.
Adam Landstein, who served as President for the Class of 2022 from 2018-2019, has announced his run for Vice President for 2020-2022. “I am running for this position because I care about the future of my class and I want to make sure our last 2 years of high school are a memorable time. I believe I’m a qualified candidate who executed a successful freshman formal,” Landstein wrote. Landstein will be running against the incumbent, Kuhu Badgi, and fellow board member Emma Botelho.
Vice President Kuhu Badgi points to her accomplishments in her first term as VP, and the fact that she has worked for all students. “The events I have planned in the past have been original and of interest to all students in our class. Most importantly, I will continue to work towards a memorable and unique high school experience for all students in the Class of 2022,” she said.
She adds that incumbency during COVID is especially important. “I had to collaborate with the other officers to organize and brainstorm events that would be safe. I know how to efficiently go about planning more Covid-friendly fundraisers for the future and can avoid any road bumps in the process,” she said.
President McAuliffe, who won in 2019, is running for re-election against Shez Jakhro and Chinmay Kalakonda. McAuliffe says her experience as an officer and a former board member, puts her in a unique position. “I know what it’s like to be a board member, and I know what it’s like to be an officer…I made sure that all members felt heard and included, which is what allowed us to all work together so successfully,” she said. McAuliffe promises that the Class of 2022 will have a prom. “Whether it be at Blue Hills or outdoors and socially-distant in the case that COVID regulations become stricter, I promise that we will have a prom,” McAuliffe added.
Secretary Amrik Eadara will be running against the same slate of candidates as last time. Planning board members Abha Chaudhari, Brady Daylor, and Melanie Lefkowitz will all be seeking the role once more. Eadara says he’s running again to keep his class connected. “During these unprecedented times, it is especially important to keep our class connected and I want to be a significant part of bringing all of us together and creating a fun and comfortable environment,” he said.
Eadara cited a series of his accomplishments while in office, noting that he helped plan the widely-praised food truck event in the fall of 2019, sold class merchandise, and planned the Sophomore Semi, which was canceled due to COVID-19. He said the decision for who wins is in the hands of his grade. “I would be extremely grateful for the opportunity of serving as Class Secretary for the final two years of high school,” he said.
Melanie Lefkowitz, currently on planning board, says that she is running for secretary because she loves being on the board. “I would like to increase my involvement in this group through this position. I am organized and dependable, which are very important traits to have for this role,” she says. Lefkowitz, who has served on the board since freshman year, says she has “really enjoyed” her time serving and “[hopes] to continue for the remainder of [her] time” at Sharon High.
Simone Dunbar, the sixth planning board member vying for an officer position, says she’s running for treasurer to “create good for [her] grade and the school as a whole.” She says that her favorite part “is that everyone on the board comes from a different social circle in the school.” “I will work to ensure that the majority of students are happy while also staying in budget,” she said.
The Talon has reached out to the incumbent Treasurer, Deyan Kassev, for comment.
The results should be announced on Friday or the following Monday. The Class of 2022 will vote for their ten-person planning board the week after the election.