Mar 232011
 
Authors: Courtney Riley

Matt Strauch, the director of Legislative Affairs for student government, was ratified as the new director of Public Relations and special assistant to the student government president Wednesday night at the Senate meeting, replacing Amy Lamb.

Strauch has held the position under the two previous the Associated Students of CSU administrations. He said he is confident in adding this responsibility to his current job.

Strauch said the job wasn’t being effectively fulfilled by his predecessor and that he was picking up a lot of the slack.

Lamb could not be reached for comment.

ASCSU President Cooper Anderson said he was not permitted to comment on the employment of Lamb.
Anderson began speaking to Strauch about taking the job a couple of weeks ago, and after multiple conversations, appointed him to the position.

“Others were considered, but the pool shrank quickly because I needed someone with experience for the final month and a half of the semester,” Anderson said. “Every task I’ve given him has always gotten done to a professional degree.”

Some members of the Senate debated Strauch’s ratification Wednesday evening because they felt they had no voice in the appointment.

When appointing directors, Anderson usually opens up the application to the public, but this particular case was not treated as a hiring process, according to Sen. Joe Eden.

Another concern was that Strauch has other time commitments, such as serving as the director of Legislative Affairs, as well as being the vice chair of the elections committee.

But Eden said Strauch is really the only one who can do the job.

“At this point in the year, this is the only way you can go about it,” he said. “You can’t screw around with applications. Cooper should be able to appoint who he wants to.”

Anderson said he admires the job Strauch is doing in his current position as director of Legislative Affairs, which is a public relations job in and of itself. He does not anticipate the legislative department to be a burden on Strauch unless a particular issue with higher education comes up.

Eric Berlinberg, the deputy chief of staff, said Strauch did a phenomenal job holding this position in past administrations, especially with the elections last year.

“He really keeps the integrity of the organization high,” he said.

As director of Public Relations and special assistant to the president, Strauch’s responsibilities include interacting with media to ensure clarity and be the voice for the organization, especially when things are rough, Strauch said.

“My job is not to hide anything whatsoever,” he said. “It’s to make sure information is available and to put it into a package people can easily consume.”

He wrote the job description for the public relations position as part of his ending duties with the last administration in April 2010.

The job description also specifies that anyone involved with an ASCSU presidential campaign cannot hold this position.

“All arrows sort of pointed to me to do this for the next five weeks,” Strauch said. “I’m not doing it for the money. I’m helping out my friend Cooper and an organization I really enjoy working for.”

ASCSU Beat Reporter Courtney Riley can be reached at news@collegian.com.

 Posted by at 4:32 pm

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