Murphy DePompei, who was elected College Council (CC) chair in the spring as a member of the Thrive slate, resigned from the position in late July, just two months after taking office. She will be replaced by fourth-year Marla Anderson, who writes, “I firmly believe the most important voices here are student voices, so as we return to campus, I look forward to supporting the goals and initiatives of my Council members and USG peers.”
In a statement sent to The Maroon, DePompei wrote that she resigned “for personal mental health reasons stemming from different and irreconcilable visions of leadership to continue effectively as a Slate.” She declined to comment further on any details leading up to her resignation.
Thrive’s short tenure has not been free of strife. Before formally taking office, the Thrive slate released a contentious statement in support of Palestine, writing that the Undergraduate Student Government “unequivocally condemns the violence carried out by Israel and stands in support of a free Palestine.” In response, an open letter and several competing petitions were published, some in support of Thrive’s statement and some calling for retraction. A resolution to retract the statement was introduced to CC, but it did not pass. According to Abbott, when the Thrive slate officially took office shortly after this controversy, few USG members had the bandwidth for any meaningful work.
Nevertheless, late June and July marked a period of vigorous work by many USG members. “Murphy was doing an incredible amount of work…and so many other members of leadership and College Council and the committees were active in an unprecedented and incredibly effective manner,” Abbott said. But fractures in leadership were also beginning to emerge. “There was frustration that not everyone who needed to be or should have been active during the summer was,” Abbott noted.
In her statement, DePompei cited “different expectations of communication, diligence, and execution of goals” as reasons for her resignation. “We are all on good terms, and my decision should not reflect negatively on the dozens and dozens of USG members doing great work on a daily basis for students,” she continued.
The remaining members of the Thrive slate, President Parul Kumar and Executive Vice President for External Affairs Natalie Wang, told The Maroon, “Although we are sad to see Murphy’s departure from USG, we fully respect her decision and are appreciative that we got the opportunity to work with her.”
Anderson, DePompei’s replacement, has not been involved with USG previously. She is the President of the Georgiana Rose Organization and the Chief People Officer for BLK Capital Management. In the past, she has held leadership positions with the Black Professional Society and the Organization of Black students.
The replacement of DePompei was conducted via an application process open to all undergraduate students. The USG cabinet, composed of the remaining slate members and other executive leadership, nominated two out of three applicants for the position: Anderson and David Liang, the current Board of Trustees Liaison. CC selected Anderson by vote on Tuesday, September 21 and publicized their selection on Wednesday morning.