- After a meeting, Hallie Landwehr, director of Gender & Sexuality Concerns, said UAlbany United candidates Mark Anthony Quinn and Patrick Carroll's plans for the department lack vision
- However, the meeting was "productive" according to Quinn
- Landwehr, a Langie Cadesca supporter, said her bias in Student Association politics doesn't factor into GSC concerns
- Carroll promised a budget increase for the department days later
- The budget increase isn't enough to prove interest in GSC, Landwehr said
Student Association presidential hopeful Marc Anthony Quinn last Monday asked, “What have been your biggest successes in this department?” in response to a question about his ticket’s plans for Gender & Sexuality Concerns.
Quinn’s reply miffed GSC director and Langie Cadesca supporter Hallie Landwehr, who last Monday sat with the presidential contender and his running mate Patrick Carroll, the top of the UAlbany United ticket, to discuss potential post-election department goals.
“When I had to essentially teach Mark Anthony and Patrick [about GSC], it was more like, ‘Shit, do you have a plan?’ or do you just want to be like, ‘Oh yeah, we want the next director to know what they’re doing’ — which is stressful,” said Landwehr.
After she explained GSC’s initiatives, Quinn asked about the department’s greatest struggles (the department has been strapped since taking a $3,000 cut last year).
The discussion ended with the ticket pledging to expand on a continuation of this year’s intiatives after Landwehr asked again about UAlbany United’s vision for GSC.
In a statement, Quinn called the hour-plus meeting “productive.”
“We know all of the great things that department does for this campus and we are advocating for an increase in their budget,” he said.
But for Landwehr, the meeting indicated that Quinn and Carroll haven’t paid attention to GSC initiatives throughout the year or listened to her reports at weekly senate meetings.
Carroll denied that.
“For a vice presidential candidate and a presidential candidate, that 90 second report is not the be all, end all to a department,” said Carroll.
During his vice presidential run, Carroll has had rumored ambitions to eliminate the GSC. On the campaign trail, he was sometimes called the “homophobic vice presidential candidate.”
During the meeting, he dispelled claims.
Additionally, Carroll four days later told Landwehr he would boost the GSC’s budget. He didn’t specify the amount, but told Minerva Daily it would be sorted out during budget talks.
But Landwehr has been vigilant. What she described as UAlbany United’s lacking vision for the department overshadows plans to boost its coffers. She believes their vision for GSC isn’t substantive enough.
“Would I call Patrick ‘homophobic’? No, because that’s a heavy thing to throw at someone,” said Landwehr. “But neither his or Mark Anthony’s actions have shown that they want to get to know the population that makes up 20 percent of the university.”
Gender and sexuality are an integral part of UAlbany United’s message, Carroll said.
Along with UAlbany United, Landwehr also met with Cadesca, running mate Nick Pepe, and briefly with then-Growth Campaign vice presidential candidate Alexander O’Leary to discuss department plans. She favored each candidate’s vision over Quinn and Carroll: Cadesca and Pepe mentioned specifics on event planning; O’Leary advocated to get student groups more involved in GSC affairs.
Despite her support for Cadesca, Landwehr insisted her departmental concerns over UAlbany United’s vision are unbiased.
When asked if Carroll believes the GSC director’s views are impartial, he did not directly answer.
“So I think that the noise in this election is that I’m looking to cut the department and the substance of this election is no, I’m looking to increase it,” he said.
After the runoff election was announced, an SA official in the office at the time reported to Minerva Daily that Landwehr said, “they’re getting rid of my department.”
This was taken out of context according to Landwehr. She was speaking to Ryan Maestre, director of Public Relations, and two interns, discussing her meeting with Quinn and Carroll four days prior, reportedly dispelling rumors.