Lucas Gilmour wins ASB presidential election

Tekla Carlen, Copy Editor

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The school has reached a decision—junior Lucas Gilmour will become the next Associated Student Body (ASB) president after seniors Evan Mahaffey and Lily Navab graduate this May. Gilmour has previously held class cabinet positions as freshman vice president and sophomore president. He ran for class president again this year but did not win, which he said was a “blessing in disguise” because it allowed him to take a hard look at his time commitments and intentions with ASB.

“I took Leadership this year for the first time, and after the first semester, I really fell in love with the class,” Gilmour said.

Also heavily involved in theater and Publications, Gilmour brushed worries about a heavy workload aside. He dropped one of his harder classes for senior year to focus on ASB, the musical and being a yearbook editor. Although he had been interested in ASB officer positions for a long time, he finalized his decision to run last semester after a meeting with teacher Nicole Carter and current ASB cabinet members about the future of the Leadership program.

During his campaign, he put up posters in places students frequently pass, such as above water fountains, on corners of buildings and in front of bathrooms. He placed special emphasis on freshman classrooms because he is least familiar with the school’s youngest students, and he made a campaign video with junior Jeffery Chen to prove his dedication to the ASB position.

“The main thing I really wanted to do with this video was kind of prove to people that I’m capable,” Gilmour said. “People rarely in the past have taken me seriously when it comes to stuff like [leadership] and it’s always bothered me.”

Gilmour thinks he won by a relatively small margin and that fewer people may have voted compared to the previous election because of the switch to paper ballots. According to Carter, who took over the Leadership program this year, only 9 percent of the student body voted in the 2019 election. She assumes that the turnout in previous years was “exponentially higher.” The paper ballot system assuaged concerns about voting manipulation in light of last year’s controversy, but the ASB elections will revert to their digital format in April.

One of Gilmour’s goals as ASB president-elect is to improve communication between staff and students, which he finds especially important because the changes in staff has created a transitional phase as new hires develop their roles at Burlingame.

In addition, ASB has modified its constitution so the organization can connect effectively with the Leadership class. Most notably, in each grade, a class historian will follow and record the year’s events, the class coordinator will have to be a member of the Leadership class and ASB presidential candidates will run in April along with candidates for all other positions. The latter change means that candidates who lose the presidential election will not be able to run for another ASB position later in the semester.

Gilmour’s other objective is to make school less stressful in small but meaningful ways, like playing music outside every day during lunch.

“High school has become a hotspot of stress and anxiety each year more and more, so I … want to reduce that,” Gilmour said. “Make high school fun again.”