Understanding the Editorial Board

Opinion by Andrew Valencia
April 2, 2010, 12:20 a.m.

This coming Monday, April 5, the Editorial Board of The Stanford Daily will publish its endorsement of an executive slate for the April 8 ASSU student election. Making an endorsement of an executive slate is a responsibility and privilege that the Editorial Board does not take lightly. The approaching election, more so than any in recent years, has yielded no clear frontrunners, and much of the student body remains undecided about the different executive slates.

With this in mind, The Daily’s Editorial Board hopes to offer students an informed suggestion on which slate would be most effective in the executive office. Before we run the Editorial Board’s endorsement, however, we feel it is pertinent to give the student body a clear idea of exactly what the Editorial Board is and how the endorsement process works.

The Editorial Board currently consists of five board members and the Chair of the Editorial Board. As a collective body, it discusses issues relevant to the entire Stanford community and, based on points of mutual consent, lays out the arguments that run in the editorials published in the Opinions section of The Daily. Members of the board take alternating turns writing out the editorials, and the Chair of the Editorial Board makes revisions and fits the editorials for publication. The Chair of the Editorial Board receives a small stipend for his or her work, while the rest of the board members serve voluntarily.

In addition to clarifying what the Editorial Board is, we also wish to reiterate what the Editorial Board is not–the Editorial Board does not serve as an editorial extension of The Stanford Daily News section, nor any other part of the newspaper’s organization. The board does not take cues, or even suggestions, from the rest of The Daily. The board generates its own content and acts as an independent body, the purpose being to prevent the news side of The Daily from influencing the editorial side, and vice versa. With regard to The Daily’s coverage of the election, the Editorial Board’s endorsement will not have any impact on the The Daily’s news coverage, nor will the News section influence which slate the board endorses on Monday.

Of the six current members of the Editorial Board, two members–Tiq Chapa ’10 and Ishan Nath ‘12–will not be participating in the executive endorsement due to conflicts of interest with other areas of the election. The endorsement will then be decided by the remaining members of the board–Ashley Artmann ’12, Cameron Drake ’10 and Ana Diaz-Hernandez ’11, as well as the current Chair of the Editorial Board, Andrew Valencia ’10. The Editorial Board will hold thirty-minute interview sessions with the executive slates this Saturday, and then will reach a consensus of which slate most deserves our support in the election. Stanford Daily President and Editor in Chief Kamil Dada will observe the interviews as a representative of the organization, but will not participate in the discussion or influence the board’s decision in any way.

Of the six slates running for the ASSU executive, four are currently seeking the Editorial Board’s endorsement–the slates of Cardona/Wharton, Peacock/Bakke, Thom and Stephanie and the No Rain Campaign have all submitted applications to be considered for our endorsement and have agreed to be interviewed.

Regardless of which executive slate the Editorial Board chooses to endorse on Monday, the Stanford community can be assured that the Editorial Board and The Stanford Daily organization have taken measures necessary to ensure that each of the four slates is given fair and unbiased consideration. The final decision of which slate the board will endorse will be made with only the greatest benefit of the Stanford community in mind.

Andrew Valencia

Chair of the Editorial Board

Kamil Dada

President and Editor in Chief

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