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Ruof to be next Chief of Staff

Kristen Durbin | Tuesday, March 30, 2010

When the time came for student body president-elect Catherine Soler to select the chief of staff for her term, she said she had no difficulty making her decision.

Soler named junior Nick Ruof, currently chair of the Residence Life committee in Student Senate, as her chief of staff, the No. 3 position in student government. Soler and student body vice president-elect Andrew Bell take office April 1.

“Picking Nick was easy,” Soler said. “He helped us a lot with our campaign, and he was always encouraging, enthusiastic and there for us through all the long nights.”

Soler also said it was important to choose an experienced member of student government who has goals that are similar to those of Soler and Bell.

In this respect, she said, Ruof was perfect for the job.

“The chief of staff must be a selfless person because they put just as much work in as the president and vice president without the recognition,” Soler said. “He really has a great vision of what student government should be, so we’re very happy about his passion for helping us out and being involved.”

Ruof, a chemical engineering major from Carroll Hall, served as Carroll’s senator his sophomore and junior years “to meet people and effect change on campus,” he said.

Soler said Ruof will also bring a unique perspective to a student government that will be led by two juniors next year.

“The fact that Nick will be a senior living off campus next year is really important for connecting with other off-campus seniors,” Soler said. “It really adds another dimension to our leadership.”

Ruof similarly emphasized his interest in improving relations between student government, the University and students living off campus.

“I’ll be working with the Northeast Neighborhood Council because I want to be a part of the neighborhood,” Ruof said. “It’s important for off-campus students to have someone who is a member of student government living off campus who has an ear with the administration.”

In addition to serving as the third-highest ranking member of student government and as chief adviser to Soler and Bell, he will also oversee all 10 student government committees and the newly revamped freshman leadership program, First Undergraduate Experience in Leadership (FUEL), which aims to get more freshmen involved in student government.

Ruof said he will also take on special interests and plans to generate new ideas for improving campus life, such as installing lights on the McGlinn Fields and selling dorm apparel in the Hammes Notre Dame Bookstore.

“We are also focusing on the Multicultural Affairs Committee to increase awareness of diversity and change its perceptions on campus,” Ruof said. “[Outgoing committee chair] Nika Giger has done a great job, so we want to continue her good work next year.”

Ruof’s varied goals, experience and seniority have Soler and Bell looking forward to a successful term next year.

“We’re extremely confident in his abilities to carry out our platform,” Soler said. “We’re really excited because he’s done a great job so far.”