Spring 2018 Elections: Officers and Stewards

You will receive election emails on April 22nd with a link to a ballot, your unique ID, and a confirmation code. If you have not received an email by 5pm on April 22, please email us at gsu.elections.team@gmail.com


  • Co-President for Bargaining
    • Claudio Gonzales


Read Claudio Gonzales’ Statement

My name is Claudio Jacobo Gómez-Gonzáles, I’m a 3rd year in math, and I’m running for bargaining co-president.

I joined GSU in Fall of 2016 because I want to bargain for better healthcare, childcare stipends, and paid graduate employee positions devoted to the pursuit of equity and inclusion. But after the administration spent millions of dollars attempting to eliminate our right to bargain entirely, I realized these negotiations have to become bigger than just workers and bosses: our campaign has to be about our community organizing together against the broader power structures that oppress us all. Because I am committed to winning a strong contract for graduate employees, I am committed to organizing so that workers and community members understand their shared interest in getting to the table.

I want to organize a University-wide Labor Council where workers on campus will have veto power over investment decisions, vendor relationships, and housing sales. I want to hold open bargaining sessions, wherein people who are touched by this institution can directly demand accountability on their own terms. Fundamentally, I am running for co-president to organize a University in which students, staff, faculty, nurses, and the community ​make decisions—rather than the administration—about things that impact all our lives.



  • Andrew Phillips


Read Andrew Phillip’s Statement

I am Andrew Phillips, a 3rd year Graduate Student Employee in Chemistry, and I am running for co-president/chair of the bargaining committee. I am committed to leading the bargaining process so it is directly in line with our members’ concerns and transparent. I have actively participated in the GSU committee in charge of developing the bargaining survey since December. Moreover, as a part of the methodology sub-committee, I recognize that the strength of our union is in our members, and that it is critical to use robust methods to understand what issues matter to our members. To further understand the process of contract negotiations, I attended a conference on behalf of GSU about engaging the community in the bargaining process so that we can build a mutually beneficial relationship with the larger South Side community and have greater bargaining leverage. While I recognize that our goals in contract negotiations will be challenging, as a member of the LGBTQ community I am especially sensitive to the concerns of minorities, and will not compromise on issues of diversity and inclusion.


Co-President for Grievance

  • Katie Bellamy Mitchell


Read Katie Bellamy Mitchell’s Statement

My name is Katie Bellamy Mitchell and I am a graduate student worker in the Committee on Social Thought. I am running for co-President to take on the work of running and collaboratively building the Grievance Committee in its inaugural year.

I want to build a union that is sustainable for the people who are doing the work inside of it, that identifies with the Chicago student workers it represents, that is powerful and insistent on its demands in the face of the administration, and attentive to securing access and equality of working conditions for all graduate workers regardless of their gender expression and orientation, race, ability, economic status, or documentation.

A crucial part of achieving that goal is establishing a well-functioning Grievance Committee to ensure that the people who are impacted by these inequalities and unfair working conditions do not have to carry the burden alone, have access to a network of their peers for support, and have a legally protected voice at the bargaining table to represent their concerns and fight for them. Given that most available resources are underfunded, understaffed, exploitative, or inadequate, a strong Grievance Committee is an essential part of a union that is oriented around a common vision of solidarity, justice, equity, and accountability for everyone involved in building our university and in our larger community — and we can build that with and for each other this coming year.


Communications Secretary

  • Katie Nolan

Financial Secretary

  • Yaniv Ron-El


Read Yaniv Ron-El’s Statement

Full statement: Hi, I’m Yaniv (pronounced: “Yan” – like it sounds + “eve” – like the ending syllable of Tel-Aviv). I’m a Sociology PhD student, originally from Israel. I’ve been a member of GSU since my first year at UofC in 2011, and an organizer since the beginning of 2017. I’m running for the Financial Secretary position. Some relevant facts for my candidacy: Before I came to Chicago, as an M.A. student at Tel-Aviv University, I was a member of the Steering Committee of the Junior Staff Union there, serving one year as a regular member and one year as a member of the Audit Committee, that oversees also finance and the issuance of audit report. At UofC, I was the treasurer of the Sociology Grad Student Organization, and in the last two years I’ve been a co-president and managing the finances of the Yoga Club. Some irrelevant facts for my candidacy: I enjoy yoga, running, meditation, $5 Tuesdays at Harper and Chatham cinema theaters, and exploring the various neighborhoods of Chicago.
Short statement: I tend to be very responsible with other people’s budgets (unfortunately, not as much responsible with my own…)


General Secretary

  • Owen Hubbard


Read Owen Hubbard’s Statement

Hi! I’m Owen, a second year PhD student in Music, and I’m running to be General Secretary for 2018–19. Since arriving here from the UK to begin my graduate studies a year and a half ago, I’ve been incredibly impressed with the diverse, mutually supportive, and socially-conscious group of grad students I’ve encountered here: people who care deeply about producing groundbreaking research, but who also invest vast amounts of time and labor in teaching, in fostering a sense of intellectual community that’s grounded and purposeful rather than locked in the ivory tower, and in being good citizens of the neighborhood and city in which we live. However, it seems clear to me that in order for us to live out those values, we need to act as a collective to ensure that our interests and needs as workers are taken into account by the administration—something they’ve shown that they won’t do by themselves.

If elected as General Secretary, I would hope to bring to the table my extensive administrative and committee experience from a broad range of contexts—most recently, serving as both Secretary for my department’s graduate student organization and a Departmental Organizer for GSU—along with my strong interest in collecting, organizing, and communicating information, and a passionate belief in transparency and clarity. In particular, I’d hope to work to ensure that GSU develops as a body that has a clear sense of history, common purpose, and vision, but one which is continually informed by and accountable to the interests of its membership.


  • Natalia Piland Chicchón


Read Natalia Piland Chiccón’s Statement

My name is Natalia Piland. I am a 4th year Committee on Evolutionary Biology PhD Candidate, and I would be honored to serve as Graduate Students United’s General Secretary.

As General Secretary, I would prioritize GSU’s memory and future by organizing historical documents, interviewing past and current members to highlight what our members believe the union should stand for, and making all this information available for current and future members in the spirit of inclusion and union-building for all students.

I have experience with both of the groups that the General Secretary works directly with, the Department Organizers/Stewards and the Communications Committee, having actively served in both groups since joining GSU.

Furthermore, I have extensive administrative and programmatic experience from years of working in the nonprofit world, particularly in the Wildlife Conservation Society, and taking on leadership roles in student groups in both my undergraduate and graduate careers (for example, Multicultural Graduate Community at UC, and the Association of Peruvians at Cornell).

I am excited to continue working with my colleagues in this phase of our union between our election and our first contract, making sure that we advocate for the needs of all graduate employees at UChicago and for those
of the wider community.


Divisional Representative for Biological Sciences

  • Audrey Williams

Divisional Representative for Divinity

    • Andrew Kunze


Read Andrew Kunze’s Statement

I’m running for the office of Divinity representative so I can continue to work with Divinity School students, as I did during the campaign for unionization.

I’m on board with the SPARK platform.


    • Cody Jones


Read Cody Jones’s Statement

My name is Cody Jones, I’m a 3rd year graduate worker in Religion, Literature, and Visual Culture at the Divinity School, and and a 3rd year in Comparative Literature.

I joined the GSU in 2015 and have served in various rules including Communications Co-Chair the fall of 2017 before the election. I joined because I felt the University had fundamentally failed in its charge to provide adequate healthcare, childcare, grievance procedures, and pay for its workers, all the while telling its students, staff, and faculty, that this was a place of inclusion and support.

The solutions to these problems are not simply a strong collective bargaining presence; they also require a commitment to directly address issues of social justice, including accountability, transparency, and a commitment to address the concerns and needs not only of the University community, but that of Hyde Park generally. That’s why I support the platform GSU SPARK. Workers’ rights are everybody’s rights. I share in the vision of establishing a Labor Council on campus, a democratic body with veto power over top-down, unilateral administrative decisions that affect all of our lives. To this end, I am running for Divisional Representative for Divinity in order to help implement a comprehensive program of social and economic justice within the GSU, and our community.


Divisional Representative for Humanities

  • Yueling Ji

Divisional Representative for Physical Sciences

  • Gourav Khullar


Read Gourav Khullar’s Statement

I am a 3rd year graduate student at the Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics, and am running for the position of the officer representative for the Physical Sciences Division (PSD). I have been involved with GSU for the past year – with the Bargaining Committee, and organizing within Astronomy, Physics and PSD. I see my work as the PSD Representative to be that of increasing and sustaining divisional membership, and ensuring their maximum involvement by utilizing the strengths of each of our members in actions that work for them.

As part of the Steering Committee at GSU, I envision building a more inclusive democratic union that structurally caters to marginalized and oppressed groups within our membership and the community we live in, along any and every axis of identity. I strongly believe that only a union built on the ideas of equity, diversity, and respect for individuals and the community, stays true to its objective of providing workers – all workers – with a powerful collective voice within the University.


Divisional Representative for Social Sciences

  • Kristin Hickman

Stewards – 1 steward slot per 25 members in each department (rounded up)

  • Biological Sciences Division
    • Cell and Molecular Biology
      • Jason Casler
    • Committee on Evolutionary Biology
      • Ben Otoo
      • Ryan Fuller
    • Computational Neuroscience
      • Peter Malonis
    • Ecology and Evolution
      • Arvind Pillai
    • Human Genetics
      • Manny Vazquez
    • Medical Physics
      • Eyjólfur Guðmundsson
    • Neurobiology
      • Joe Pak
  • Divinity School
    • Divinity
      • Andrew Kunze
  • Humanities Division
    • Art History
      • Sylvia Wu
      • Zsofi Valyi-Nagy
    • Cinema & Media Studies
      • Katerina Korola
    • East Asian Languages and Civilizations
      • Yueling Ji
    • English
      • Katie Nolan
      • Arianna Gass
      • Noah Hansen
    • Germanic Studies
      • Ella Wilhelm
    • Linguistics
      • Gallagher Flinn
    • Music
      • Barbara Dietlinger
      • Anna Gatdula
    • Near Eastern Language and Culture
      • Ella Karev
      • Teagan Wolter
      • Brendan Hainline
      • Betül Kaya
    • Philosophy
      • Stephen Cunniff
    • Romance Languages and Literatures
      • Isabela Fraga
  • Physical Sciences Division
    • Astronomy/Astrophysics
      • Philip Mansfield
    • Biophysical Sciences
      • Steven Redford
    • Chemistry
      • Clara del Junco
      • Jonathan Fetherolf
      • Elizabeth Bain
      • Bodhi Vani
      • Andrew Phillips
      • Kate Berger
    • Computer Science
      • Joe Wingerter
      • Mingzhe Hao
    • Geophysical Sciences
      • Grant Macdonald
    • Mathematics
      • Kevin Casto
      • Faidon Andriopoulos
      • Mathilde Gerbelli-Gauthier
    • Physics
      • Lipi Gupta
      • Robert Morton
  • School of Social Service Administration
    • School of Social Service Administration
      • Matthew Borus
      • Kristen Ethier
  • Social Sciences Division
    • Anthropology
      • Grigory Gorbun
      • Yukun Zeng
      • Kelsey Rooney
      • Alejandra Azuero
      • Yaqub Hilal
    • Comparative Human Development
      • Shruti Vaidya
    • History
      • Savitri Sedlacek Kunze
    • Political Science
      • Agatha Slupek
    • Psychology
      • Hannah Kim
    • Sociology
      • Peter Fugiel
      • Danya Lagos
      • Rishi Arora