Statement from Nick Johns after resigning as SA president

On September 19, 2013

Editor's note: Nick Johns resigned as Student Association president Wednesday. This letter, his statement to the student body, has not been altered in any way.

Dear UB Students,

I would like to thank all the wonderful people who supported me through this difficult time and have never let this debacle shake their view of my character. I definitely could not have made it through this without the support of my amazing assistant, Marissa Malone. You are one of the most extraordinary people I have ever met, and your unshakeable faith in me cannot be understated.  Your faith in me has kept me going and has directly restored my faith in the fundamental goodness of humanity. I also cannot properly express my appreciation for my roommates, friends and the other unexpected people who told me to keep my head up in such a sad situation. I am so happy for discovering who my real friends are.

It took me quite some time to arrive at the decision to resign rather than to combat the ridiculous allegations leveled against me, but in the end I felt that it was the best choice for the Student Association, as well as the student body, for a variety of reasons.

Although I know I could have definitely beat all of these charges based on my strong evidence to refute these claims, I also know that a prolonged conflict would create fundamentally irreparable fractures in the structure of the SA. It would have caused needless stress on all of our staff. Stress that I already have witnessed within the two weeks of this storm brewing. It would have delayed the implementation of our new surveying systems, and would have definitely impeded the expansion of our presence on campus.

Win or lose, it would have clouded the entire academic year in a mire of discontent and distrust. How could I possibly trust the individuals who were responsible for attempting to publicly assassinate my character? Even worse, how could we all be expected to work together in a cohesive and transparent environment?

I found it to be much more practical to cut all of our losses and attempt to give the SA a chance to reboot. I hope that the SA staff will understand that while I still support the Student Association as a whole, there is a small minority that would have made a progressive year impossible had I beat these charges.

I still fully deny all of the opposition's claims against me, as their claims are unsubstantiated and evidence circumstantial. I know that I did not commit any impeachable offences during my Presidency, and that claim can be corroborated by many individuals who have seen both sides' stories.

I am stepping down because I want the SA to have a second chance this year.

If there can be anything said about my Presidency, it is this: I never betrayed those who were close to me, I stayed true to myself and my ideals and I always tried to push for progress.

I hope you enjoyed the Party at the Point, and the victory that ensued. It seems that we have started a great tradition here at UB with that crowd of 24,000. I appreciate the learning experience this ordeal has given me but as Calvin Coolidge said, "We draw our Presidents from the people. It is a wholesome thing for them to return to the people. I came from them. I wish to be one of them again"  And so to the people I return once again.

May the best man or woman win the special election.



Nick Johns

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