July 2014

2014 Staff Senate Elections Open July 7 – July 18

  • Elections for the next term of the Staff Senate will be held from Monday, July 7, through Friday, July 18, 5:00 pm.
  • Ballots will be distributed electronically via the Staff Senate Listserv on Monday, July 7. Voting will also be available at the Summer 2014 Staff Appreciation Coffee Klatches.
  • Only classified and nonstudent wage employees are eligible to vote for senators across all campuses and categories.
  • To confirm that you are on the Staff Senate listserv, email
  • Meet the nominees at the Summer 2014 Staff Appreciation Coffee Klatches.
  • In addition to the candidates on the ballot, write-in candidates are allowed for each campus.

The following seats are open:

Campus  Total Seats Open Seats Number of Candidates
Fairfax 18 8 9
Arlington 3 1 2
Prince William 5  3  1
At-large (SCBI, remote workers, and those not assigned to a specific campus) 2 2 2

Candidate Statements

Fairfax Candidates

Ahmed, Wajahat:  Payroll Specialist, Human Resources and Payroll

Making a difference and working for the people is something that I absolutely have to do, when given the opportunity. Ever since I heard about the Staff Senate (back in December) I asked, “How can I join?” In the past I have been chosen as the Class Representative all throughout high school and also was hand selected by a professor of mine to be his advisor and teaching assistant. I believe that there’s always a way to make something and anything run better. This is why I want to join the Staff Senate, it is a way I can hear the opinions, thoughts, and suggestions of the staff and bring up these topics at the appropriate times where a change can be made. It is not enough that we think that something can be better, we must do something about it, and I believe as a Staff Senator I can become the voice of employees who seek to make GMU better, maybe just idea at a time. I think those small ideas or changes have a lot to do with how far GMU has come thus far, I believe I can help take it even further.

Carr, Thomas:  Assistant Wrestling Coach, Athletics

As a member of the staff senate I would enjoy the chance to facilitate communication between all of the departments and to represent the concerns of other wage employees at Mason.

Hanley, Jocelyn:  Admissions Coordinator, Admissions

I would like to use this opportunity to be involved in Staff Senate to be more engaged in the campus community outside of my department and expand my campus network through my exposure with working aside the rest the senate membership.

Kennedy, Amanda:  Fiscal Technician, FAST, Fiscal Services

I would like the opportunity to represent my area, Fiscal Services, on the Staff Senate. Fiscal Services provides a lot of services to staff and faculty. Thus, I think it’s very important to have someone represent this area, so that I can help both those of us who work behind-the-scenes in Fiscal Services as well as those staff members who deal with Fiscal Services. I think it would be extremely helpful to make some of those behind-the-scenes processes clearer to staff members. In doing that, I could also find ways to better serve the staff on our part.

I would also like to get involved with more of Mason, outside my department. Not only could I better serve staff members in my own department as a staff senator, but getting involved in other areas of Mason would allow me to serve my fellow staff members in other ways. News and information about our university is something I constantly seek and spread within my own department. I would love to broaden that practice to the wider staff community by serving as a Staff Senator.

Kirk, Megan:  Human Resources Consultant, Human Resources and Payroll (Incumbent)

It has been a pleasure to serve as a Staff Senate representative for the past two years at George Mason University. During my tenure as a Staff Senator, I have worked diligently to represent classified staff interests on high-level search committees and at Staff Senate events. As the current Vice Chair, I will continue moving the Staff Senate forward in educating, advocating, and appreciating our classified staff and wage employees. I love working at Mason and want to ensure that all classified staff and wage employees have an enjoyable experience at Mason, whether they are working at Mason for a few short years or until retirement. It would be an honor to be re-elected to Staff Senate to continue representing the needs and interests of classified staff and wage employees.

Osoria, Francina N: Interim Executive Assistant to Director, Facilities and Travel Coordinator,  Division of Special Education & disAbilities Research/CEHD

My name is Francina Osoria and I am a staff member of the Division of Special Education in the College of Education. I am also a proud Mason alumna with a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology. If elected as a staff senator, I hope to advocate for the needs of my colleagues, share valuable information within the Mason family, get to know other departments, and participate in activities that appreciate all of the Mason staff.

I believe I have the motivation and experience to represent my colleagues on the staff senate. As a student at Mason, I served on several boards and became one of the charter members for the sorority, Chi Upsilon Sigma National Latin Sorority Inc. I am still maintaining my connection to this group and am currently serving as their alumni advisor. As a Mason employee, I have been able to explore several areas of university operations including travel, facilities, instructional technology, and human resources. I have recently completed the Administrative Professional Certificate Program, which helped me develop many skills I could apply as a staff senator. If I am elected, I will work to ensure the network between the staff senate and our community is strong and beneficial to all.

Shoemaker, Amanda:  Office Manager, Student Centers

When I started as a freshman student in August 2000, I chose Mason from the pool of excellent Virginia institutes because I believed there was something special here. The next four years only proved my initial estimation accurate – Mason truly did offer me incredible opportunities to learn from an increasingly global population both on and off campus, participate in the continuing innovations that changed the look, feel and direction of the campus daily and to grow with the guidance of exceptional staff and programming.

When I graduated in 2004 with a degree in Art History, I was fortunate enough to continue my studies and experiences with a graduate program at the George Washington University, intern with the Smithsonian and work with the Corcoran Gallery. I loved being a part of the DC art community, but I missed Mason and returned in 2008.

And since that point, I’ve been able to be a part of the changes sweeping and improving Mason the last five years – first drafting grants for research with the Center for History & New Media, then working on revenue generation projects and planning with Auxiliary Enterprises, and now training and guiding student staff with Student Centers, collaborating and teaching with the University Life Leadership Training team and just enjoying the excitement of one of the most vibrant universities in the nation (or the most in my humble opinion!).

I would very much like the opportunity to give back to my fantastic co-workers and be a part of guiding the future direction of the university and I believe Staff Senate would be an excellent opportunity to do so.

Walsh, Alex:  Receptionist, English

Last year I joined the George Mason as a receptionist for the English Department and admittedly knew very little about the university as a whole. On my first day I became wide-eyed as I was flooded with new names and new exciting departments that I’d never heard of. Little did I know that after a year, I have barley scratched the surface of the impact that this outstanding group has on the George Mason community. I’ve seen the amazing work that the Staff Senate has done to strengthen the university through recognition of outstanding employees, sharing information and addressing staff concerns with the school administration. Appreciation, education and advocacy are important to both George Mason and me. As a staff senator, I will do everything I can to promote positive communication throughout the university. We are a collective voice and it is important that our voice remains strong so that we may succeed as a community.

Zeher, Stephanie: Student Outreach and Advising Coordinator, College of Education and Human Development (Incumbent)

My name is Stephanie Zeher and I’ve been an employee at Mason for almost eight years now, two of which have been spent as a member of the Staff Senate. I’m asking for your vote to re-elect me to another two year term as YOUR Staff Senator for the Fairfax campus.

I have thoroughly enjoyed every minute of my time spent on the senate and appreciate how much the experiences have helped me grow professionally. Over the past two years I have worked on the Education and Outreach committee on various initiatives. One project dear to me was coordinating our first staff blood drive event with the Red Cross. I was honored to have the opportunity to be a part of the search committee for the new Chief of Police, surely an opportunity I wouldn’t have had otherwise. I am also the Committee Chair for the new Global Professional Staff Exchange program which is a collaboration between the Staff Senate and the Office for Global Strategies. It is certainly an exciting time to be a Senator! My only hope is to give back to the senate and the Mason community as much as it has given me over the years. This is a great place to work and I truly enjoy supporting and advocating for all of my wonderful colleagues around campus.

Arlington Candidates

Clark, Lauren: Arlington Public Information Manager

I recently celebrated my five-year work anniversary as a Mason employee, and over the course of those five years, I encountered so many opportunities to learn, grow, and connect with others at Mason. I have worked at both the Fairfax and Arlington Campuses, giving me a strong understanding of how we all fit into the Mason community. In my current role, I manage the information and visitor services at the Arlington Campus, ensuring that our students, faculty, staff, and visitors have an outstanding Mason experience in Arlington. Moreover, I compile Mason E-Files each week to share important news and announcements with faculty and staff. I love helping others stay in-the-know about Mason.

 Working in a university setting provides unique opportunities to learn and grow. I am a Mason graduate, having completed my Master’s degree part-time while working as a full-time employee. My experiences at Mason and the relationships I share with other staff members have been inspirational. I would be honored to serve as a representative of the Arlington Campus to the Staff Senate, helping our campus community stay connected with the broader Mason family.

Mackenzie, Stu, Financial and Outreach Coordinator,  TraCCC/Public Policy

Since joining Mason almost two years ago, I have come to appreciate what a diverse body of talent Mason’s staff represents. Joining the staff senate is a valuable opportunity to serve this community by facilitating advocacy for, and communication between, staff of different units and on different campuses.

 I currently serve on the university’s Eurasia Strategic Planning Committee, and am eager to find additional opportunities to exert a positive influence. I hope that my both my skills and my desire to make a contribution to the staff experience at Mason make me a credible candidate for this role.

Prince William Candidates

Majeske, Marit: Front of House Manager, Hylton Center for Performing Arts

I began working at Mason in April 2010 just before the Hylton Performing Arts Center officially opened on the Prince William Campus. I joined the Staff Senate to meet and have the opportunity to work with employees outside of my campus and college.   Through my 4 years at Mason and my 2 years serving on the Staff Senate, I have come to realize the incredible value in inter-department cooperation and communication. Mason Staff Senate has been able to grow and better represent the classified and non-student wage staff of the university through collaboration and communication. I currently serve on the University Process Improvement Council as the Staff Senate Representative. This Council oversees Mason Matters and is comprised of representatives from across the University. This council is charged with reviewing ideas submitted by members of the Mason community that could improve efficiency and allow the university to use its resources more effectively. I look forward to the opportunity to continuing to serve on the Staff Senate and UPIC to foster open dialogue between Mason’s departments and campuses.

At-large Candidates

Hinrichs, Joe: Emergency Coordinator, Environmental Health and Safety

As a two-time Mason alumnus, I consider Mason to be family. My current position as Emergency Coordinator allows me the opportunity to help protect Mason through preparedness education and emergency planning, but I want to do more. Serving as a Staff Senator will provide me with a deeper understanding of, and the means to help address, the needs and concerns of fellow Mason staffers.

My current position at Mason requires that I travel between all of our campuses to maintain general awareness and build the relationships that will help Mason through any emergency situations that may arise. My familiarity with key personnel and resources across our campuses makes me uniquely qualified to serve as a Senator At-Large.

I look forward to the opportunities and challenges that service on the Staff Senate will provide, and I’m excited to grow even closer to my Mason Family.

Spurlock, Cloud: Internal Marketing and Communications , INTO Mason

After five years of working at Mason in positions with increasing responsibility, I’ve had the opportunity to connect and collaborate with colleagues in almost every department and office. My experience working within University Life has been especially valuable in learning about the big picture and direction of our organization, and I am excited to continue building a career here with such brilliant people. I bring value to the interests of staff at Mason because of my ability to collect, synthesize, and communicate complicated information, procedures, and initiatives. I look for ways to make productive work fun and efficient so that we can all enjoy our days here.