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Morgan Smith ’21 elected Young Alumni Trustee

<h5>Morgan Smith ’21</h5>
<h6>Sameer Khan / Office of Communications</h6>
Morgan Smith ’21
Sameer Khan / Office of Communications

Morgan Smith ’21 will serve as a Young Alumni Trustee (YAT) on the University’s Board of Trustees, beginning her four-year term on July 1, 2021.

Results of the YAT elelection were announced at the Annual Meeting of the Alumni Council, which was held on Friday, May 21 at noon.

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“Having been shaped by amazing peers, faculty, and staff, I am elated by the opportunity to positively contribute to the Princeton experience to come,” Smith wrote in an email to The Daily Princetonian. “My love for Princeton originated in service and working behind the scenes, so I can’t wait to continue this work as a trustee.”

At Princeton, Smith concentrated in the School of Public and International Affairs (SPIA). In addition to serving as president of the American Whig-Cliosophic Society (Whig-Clio), she was a student worker with the Office of the Dean of Undergraduate Students, a member of Black Arts Company, a cohort leader for Vote100, and a barista for the Coffee Club.

She was also a member of the Campus Life Leadership Council, the Princeton Association of Black Women, and the SPIA Student Advisory Committee. 

“I have lived experience in wanting to see the institution I care about change over time for the better,” Smith said in a University release. “I was the first Black president of Whig-Clio, what was once an elite, exclusive institution within an already elite institution, and have since been inspired to ask what stands in the way of other ‘firsts.’ The Board of Trustees has the decision-making capacity to ensure that Princeton is a place that fosters firsts through centering equity and inclusion.”

Most recently, Smith served as a judicial intern for Chief Magistrate Judge Cheryl Pollak ’75, United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York in summer 2020. Prior to that, she was an ombudsman and legal intern for Children’s National Hospital in Washington, D.C.

Looking ahead, Smith will work as a child representative coordinator with Chicago Volunteer Legal Services through a Project 55 Fellowship.

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The YAT position, created in 1969, is meant to ensure the Board of Trustees includes four members with recent experience as undergraduates. Elected YATs “have the same rights, powers and duties as all other trustees.”

Smith will serve alongside fellow YATs Jackson Artis ’20, Sarah Varghese ’19, and Myesha Jemison ’18 — with the four-year term of Achille Tenkiang ’17 coming to a close.

Smith was among three finalists who were selected from an initial pool of 21 candidates.

Voting was conducted online through a secure system administered by the Election Services Corporation of Ronkonkoma, NY. The candidates on the general election ballot — Jonathan Ort ’21, Emma Parish ’21, and Smith — rose to the top of the primary election, in which only the senior class voted, from Feb. 23 to March 4.

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The general election ran from April 20 to May 12 and the electorate was composed of all members of the Classes of 2019, 2020, 2021 and 2022. 18 percent of the electorate participated in this year’s election.

Ort served as the 144th editor-in-chief of the ‘Prince,’ and Parish served as the 2021 class president.

“It was an honor to run against such phenomenal Princetonians like Jon and Emma,” Smith wrote.

Parish told the ‘Prince’ that she was “so grateful” to have been a finalist, and that she is “confident” in Smith’s ability to succeed in the role.

Ort also said he believes Smith, who he met during sophomore year and considers a close friend, will be successful.

“Morgan brings moral courage and conviction, unwavering dedication, and sterling character to Princeton’s Board,” he said. “There could be no one more deserving or better prepared to serve as Young Alumni Trustee, and I extend my warmest congratulations to Morgan.”

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