Robin Drummond has been elected the 2016/17 Edinburgh University Sports Union (SU) president, edging ahead of his opponent Josef Budde after a week-long campaigning period and an all-student vote.
The voter turnout and vote count was not made public by the organisation. A spokesperson told The Student that it was not SU policy to release the exact figures of its presidential votes.
With his victory, announced at the organisation’s Annual General Meeting, Drummond will assume a year-long paid position at the helm of a student-run organisation overseeing 64 clubs and 8,000 student members. As president, he will be tasked with managing the day to day operations of the Union, overseeing the executive committee, and serving as the public figurehead of the organisation.
Drummond, a fourth year, is the current Sponsorship Officer of the SU, serving as Vice President Intramural of the organisation the previous year. He ran on a platform emphasising transparency and inclusion, pledging to give sports clubs a direct vote in policy agreements and allow regular, direct interaction between clubs and the SU executives.
Among his policies was a proposal to allow for guaranteed monthly meetings between SU committee members and sports clubs. He would seek to increase engagement with the Union’s EdEx event, an annual collection of trial sessions in various clubs for students .
He also promised to increase collaboration with student liberation groups and campaigns on campus, and build connections with the Student Counselling Service and Disability Service in order to improve student mental health through sport.
In assuming the role, Drummond brings two years of SU committee experience. As Vice President Intramural, he helped formulate the One Edinburgh campaign, an initiative seeking to increase diversity in university sport, as well as introduce a new Participation Officer to the committee to focus on the effort. Prior to the role he founded his own intramural team, helping to expand its membership and establish its presence over several years.
In a speech reacting to the win, Drummond, thanked his campaign team and gave an acknowledgement to his opponent, with whom he had worked on the organisation’s committee for two years.
“The biggest thank you has to go to Josef Budde, who’s been a phenomenal friend to me for two years and it’s such an odd moment right now for the two of us,” Drummond said. “Josef’s put together some fantastic ideas in the last week and it was always going to be a bit of shame whoever did get it in the end. So thank you.”
Speaking to The Student on his future tenure, Drummond said he was looking forward to implementing his ideas on transparency.
“I’m most excited to implement my policies on transparency, and have our SU taking power back to the clubs and have everyone’s voices represented in our GMs [General Meetings],” he told The Student
Current president Marina Sergeeva welcomed the results and said Drummond’s time on committee would make him qualified for the role.
“Fantastic news,” she told The Student. “It’s reassuring for someone who’s got the experience he has to actually be elected as president. I look forward to him implementing his ideas for the new year.”
Drummond will assume his position on July 1 when the Sports Union committee formally changes hands.
Image: Sports Union