Two votes decide SGA election

Ballots recounted 13 times to verify winners--William Buckley, Joe Ring and Omari Aarons--in closest election in University history | May 2, 2005

In the closest election in the history of the student government association (SGA), William A. Buckley III, 21, was elected as the new SGA president. Buckley, who will be a senior this fall, is majoring in English with a minor in history.

Buckley and the rest of his ticket, legislative vice president Joe Ring and administrative vice president Omari Aarons, were elected by just two votes. The ballots were recounted 13 times to verify the results. Buckley, Ring and Aarons took over their offices last month.

“It was a hard fought election,” says Buckley. He and his team campaigned on five major issues: academics, community relations, discrimination and harassment, women’s issues and student life.

During his tenure, Buckley hopes to bring LSAT and MCAT prep classes to the University campus and is working to re-establish a women’s center.

“There was a women’s center at Xavier until 1980,” Buckley says. “We’re hoping a new center will help centralize women’s services on campus.”

Buckley has been involved in SGA since his freshman year first serving in the student senate, and took on the role of the first senate coordinator in school history his sophomore year.

“Everyone here [at Xavier] wants you to succeed,” says Buckley. “Professors are always available and it’s not unheard of to e-mail Fr. Graham and get a response almost right away.”

Buckley is a graduate of McMinn County High School in Athens, Tenn., where he was student class president his senior year. He says he decided to come to Xavier because of the chance to meet people from different parts the world and all different walks of life.

“I can learn more here because of all the people here, more than what I learn in a classroom,” he says. “We learn from each other.”

Upon graduation, Buckley plans to attend law school and pursue a career in politics, maybe even all the way to the White House. He doesn’t consider himself a Republican or a Democrat.
“I vote for the person and the issues,” he says. “Not a party.” He’s already gotten some political experience by working on several political campaigns, including Van Hilleary’s 2002 bid for governor of Tennessee.

Buckley received the Xavier Silver Key Award for demonstrating outstanding leadership and was also selected as the student senator most likely to change the world as well as the Jesuit ideals senator. He’s been on the dean’s list for three semesters.

Buckley is also a member of the pre-law society, Alpha Sigma Nu, is a Eucharistic minister, a Manresa group leader and a contact for prospective students. He’s also been involved with several community events including the Crosstown Help Out, Community Action Day, Drop-Inn Center, Relay For Life and reading to elementary school students. In his spare time, Buckley enjoys playing racquet ball and working out.

Buckley is the son of William and Gail Buckley of Athens, Tenn. He has one brother, Michael, and two sisters, Rachael and Taryn.