Vice President resigns from AMS executive

AMS executive and assembly may find replacement for Catherine Wright, the AMS Vice President (University Affairs), following her resignation

Catherine Wright was acclaimed as the AMS Executive's Vice President (University Affairs) in January
Catherine Wright was acclaimed as the AMS Executive's Vice President (University Affairs) in January.

This article was last updated at 2:10 p.m. on Aug. 13.

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The AMS Vice President (University Affairs) Catherine Wright resigned this afternoon in a surprise announcement.

According to a statement on the AMS’s website, Wright informed AMS Assembly Speaker Sam Anderson earlier today before she tendered her resignation, which takes effect on Friday.

“The past few months, I have been facing some personal challenges which have made transitioning into the role of Vice President (University Affairs) difficult. I have reluctantly concluded that I will not be able to serve out my term,” she stated in the news release. 

The remaining AMS executive members — President Kanivanan Chinniah and Vice President (Operations) Kyle Beaudry — say they and their staff are prepared to work harder to complete Wright's duties until another arrangement is found.

“We are committed to fulfilling those duties in order to ensure that we can deliver programs and services to students that students rely on,” Chinniah said.

All of Wright’s responsibilities will be transitioned to Chinniah.

If they replace her, Chinniah and Beaudry said they'll refer to Section 2.02.04 of the AMS Constitution. The policy gives the remaining executive members authority to appoint a new member of the executive subject to the approval of AMS Assembly.

“This obviously isn’t an ideal situation. However, we’re committed to making this as smooth of a period as possible for everyone involved,” Beaudry said.

He said he and Chinniah have "begun to engage in wide consultation" that will begin internally and move to include the AMS Assembly. 

The Vice President (University Affairs) is responsible for all AMS matters of a political and/or educational nature, research and policy development, internal academic issues and university administration affairs. 

The position also oversees the operations of six commissions — the Academic Affairs Commission, the Campus Activities Commission, the Commission of the Environment and Sustainability, the Commission of Internal Affairs, the Municipal Affairs Commission and the Social Issues Commission.

The remaining two executive members said they didn't want to speculate on who will fill the vacant role or a timeline before they complete their consultations. They also wouldn't provide further information regarding Wright's resignation out of respect for her privacy.

The first scheduled AMS Assembly meeting is set for September 24, 2015. However, as the AMS executive, Chinniah and Beaudry have the authority to call a special assembly meeting before that date.

Chinniah and Beaudry said although it’s possible to call an earlier assembly, they'll only consider doing so once they've consulted with AMS staff and other members of assembly.

Wright had served as the Municipal Affairs Commissioner in the 2013-14 school year prior to her acclamation as the incoming Vice President (University Affairs) for Team CBW in January. 

As Municipal Affairs Commissioner, she oversaw the installation of “University District” signs in the student housing area and the official recognition of the University District by the Kingston City Council.

This article has been edited to clarify that the AMS executive have not officially confirmed whether Vice President (University Affairs) Catherine Wright will be replaced. 

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