Senate confirms legislative affairs director

Director plans to have more transparency in executive department



Samantha Cruz Mendoza, Deputy Director of Student Affairs at ASWSU, confirms her position as Director of Legislative Affairs at the ASWSU meeting on Wednesday evening at the CUB. She will be representing ASWSU and lobbying in Olympia in the spring.

JAKOB THORINGTON, Former Evergreen reporter

ASWSU confirmed a new director of legislative affairs during Wednesday’s Senate meeting.

Samantha Cruz, junior criminal justice and political science double major, will take over after former Director of Legislative Affairs Josh Maasberg resigned last month.

Maasberg and the other executives of legislative affairs resigned after not attending a Washington Student Association conference earlier this semester.

Cruz will step down from her position as deputy director of student affairs to fulfill her duties as director of legislative affairs.

She said she wants to have transparency in her department to better serve students with integrity and professionalism.

Cruz will spend next semester in Olympia during the state legislative session lobbying for students.

“I believe that I have established relationships with administration through various committees in meetings that have prepared me for engaging in conversations to advocate for students with legislators at the capital,” she said.

ASWSU President Quinton Berkompas said the director’s position has some chaos surrounding it because the legislative affairs team is not fully staffed.

“She’s someone who’s incredibly qualified,” Berkompas said. “There’s really no one else that we feel like can do this job except for Sam.”

Berkompas said normal programming events that the legislative affairs team puts out regarding civic engagement have not been able to be completed because there has not been a team.

He said ASWSU is able to fill in one of the deputy director positions immediately, but has to wait  at least two more weeks for the other deputy director position to be filled.

“Let’s be honest, legislative affairs needs a full staff with the best possible people as soon as possible,” he said.