Paul taps Fessehaye as possible second chief of staff

Paul hopes to strengthen ties with auxiliaries through new position.

Missouri Students Association President Jordan Paul said he's chosen his former presidential campaign opponent Joe Fessehaye for the possible position of second chief of staff.

Paul proposed an act to the MSA Senate last week to create the position, but the Senate will not vote on the matter until Feb. 11.

"Joe's obviously got a strong drive and a commitment to helping the university and that's a big reason he'll be great for this position," Paul said.

Paul's second chief of staff would communicate between MSA and its auxiliaries, which include KCOU, MUTV/Channel 23, STRIPES and the Craft Studio. Fessehaye serves as KCOU's assistant general manager and chief operator and has participated in STRIPES.

"I've seen conflicts between MSA and their auxiliaries from both sides, first as an MSA senator and then with KCOU," Fessehaye said. "I like what Jordan's trying to do, clearing up lines of communication for MSA."

Last semester, problems with communication arose between MSA and KCOU in regard to funding a new tower for the radio station. The result was a plan to slowly phase KCOU into a financially independent organization by reducing its budget by 20 percent each year for the next five years.

Paul said Fessehaye is qualified for the possible position.

"Joe's had four years of experience in MSA auxiliaries and has especially close ties with KCOU, which he made a key part of his campaign platform in the election," Paul said. "He can help MSA strengthen ties with our auxiliaries and give them more personal attention."

Each auxiliary falls under one of MSA's four executive branch departments. The heads of those departments oversee the auxiliaries and report to the MSA president. Paul said he hopes to "cut out the middlemen" with the creation of the second chief of staff position.

"I feel like there's too much distance between the MSA's auxiliaries and its president," Paul said. "A lot of stuff can fall through the cracks in the midst of all those people passing along information about the auxiliaries."

Fessehaye said he and Paul talked about meeting at least once a month with the heads of auxiliaries.

Fessehaye finished third in the MSA presidential election in November behind Paul and MSA Senator Phyllis Williams. Williams said she "stills needs to be sold" on the creation of a new paid position within MSA.

"I really don't know about this act to create a second chief of staff yet because, as a senator, I want to make sure it's worth the value of a paid position," Williams said. "Right now, I'm just anxious to hear President Paul's argument for it."

If MSA Senate passes the act Wednesday and Fessehaye is indeed tapped for the position, he will assume one of MSA's paid positions, earning Missouri minimum wage at $7.05 per hour.

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