New SGA chief-of-staff hopes to take “behind-the-scenes” approach to position


The new SGA Chief of Staff, Derrick Ransom II. Photo credit: Hannah Renton

India Yarborough

The hole left in SGA’s cabinet after an unexpected resignation last semester has been filled, according to Sierra Ambrose, Student Government Association president.

Ambrose has chosen Derrick Ransom II, history sophomore, to serve as the chief-of-staff, following the Dec. 11 resignation of former Chief-of-Staff Fallon Chiasson. Ransom II was appointed to the position Dec. 12.

“He came on. We worked over break. And he’s pushing forward,” Ambrose said. “It’s almost like nothing has changed.”

Ambrose said Ransom II approached her before Chiasson resigned to ask how he might become more involved in student government.

“He was still on a university standing committee, and he just wanted more involvement in SGA,” Ambrose said. “Being that Joann (Cassama, SGA vice president,) and I interviewed Derrick before and we knew he was a great candidate — it was actually between him and Fallon that we were trying to decide — I decided to give him a call.”

Ambrose said Chiasson and Ransom II both applied for the chief-of-staff position via OrgSync during the spring 2018 semester.

“Derrick and Fallon were both strong applicants, and I do not regret appointing Fallon or Derrick to this position,” she added.

Ransom II said he is excited to continue his work with SGA and described the organization as one with the ability to impact a large number of people on Loyola’s campus. He noted that as chief-of-staff, though, he will take on more of a supporting role.

“Of course, there’s a lot of involvement with some front-line things here and there, but the gist of it is more behind-the-scenes,” Ransom II said. “It’s what people don’t see in terms of helping to keep everything on track and on pace. What I really desire to do is adapt to the members that are already on the cabinet.”

Ambrose previously told The Maroon she and her cabinet failed to fulfill their diversity and inclusion initiative last semester. Ransom II said he hopes to help change that outcome by engaging in more conversations with students in a variety of campus organizations.

“SGA is for the campus. SGA is for the students,” he said. “That means we should at least know what the students want, what they think can change.”

Ransom II said he does not yet have specific plans in place for how he will tackle the duties of his position. For now, he intends to build stronger relationships with his fellow cabinet members and gauge what campus issues most need to be addressed.

“I can make plans, but if I’m making plans around things that have already been addressed … then it’s not doing much,” he said. “I’d rather look at what is in front of me, and then start figuring out from there.”

Ransom II’s role as chief-of-staff is set to last until a new cabinet is sworn in later this semester.