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Brown chooses new chief executive

Kaitlynn Riely | Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Student body president-elect Liz Brown and vice president-elect Maris Braun took one of their first steps as student government leaders Tuesday when they announced Pangborn senator and Senate Social Concerns chair Sheena Plamoottil as their Chief Executive Assistant (CEA).

Plamoottil will fill the position Brown currently holds under the Lizzi Shappell-Bill Andrichik administration.

Brown called Plamoottil the “best person for the job” and said she has followed her progress closely in the Senate.

Plamoottil redefined the Social Concerns committee at the beginning of the year, Brown said, and “she really took the committee and ran with it and has gotten some good things accomplished.”

The selection of Plamoottil fills the top three positions in the student government with women, something that has never before happened at Notre Dame.

Brown said she is happy to be part of history, but said the choice of Plamoottil was because she was the most qualified.

Plamoottil called the selection of an all-female ticket for president and vice president “long-awaited.”

“I think that it’s an awesome accomplishment for women,” she said. “I think that we are very capable young women and I think that is great that the student body has elected two women. I am happy and proud to join that team as the third woman.”

Plamoottil said her ideas and her passion for student government align closely with those of Brown and Braun. Once their administration takes office Plamoottil said she would like to work with them to address advocacy issues and make student government more open to student concerns.

As the CEA, Plamoottil will serve as the chair of the Executive Programming Board, coordinate Student Senate activities and run the daily logistics of the student government office.

“It’s a unique job because it’s a lot of tying up loose ends and a lot of making sure that things run smoothly,” Brown said.

And it’s a job Plamoottil said she is “pumped” to start once turnover occurs April 1.

“I had previously wanted to run for student body president, but with my major and the MCATs, I wasn’t able to run,” she said. “So this is the next best thing and I think it will be perfect for what I want to do and the passion I’ve had for student government all my life.”

Plamoottil, a science pre-professional and psychology double major, has been involved in student government at Notre Dame since she sat on the Freshman Class Council.

She was a committee chair for the Sophomore Class Council the following year.

She said her experience in the policy-making arena of student government this year has prepared her with effective leadership skills and taught her important lessons.

“I’ve never been afraid to take on multiple initiatives at the same time and work hard for the end that we want to see,” Plamoottil said.

Brown’s tenure as CEA set a good example for her to follow, she said.

“She took several initiatives and ran with them,” Plamoottil said. “That will be something that I hope to do as well.”

Plamoottil is only the fourth CEA in Notre Dame student government. The position was first held by former student body president Dave Baron and then by current Judicial Council president Liz Kozlow the following year.