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Kimiko Hirota and Bryce Tuttle are the fighters we need

I have spent my Stanford career advocating for workers’ rights and immigrants’ rights and supporting marginalized students, and I can unequivocally state that Kimiko Hirota and Bryce Tuttle are the best possible students to serve as your next ASSU Executives. Kimiko and Bryce are powerful student leaders who believe that Stanford’s potential is limitless if we invest in and uplift every student and every community. From their efforts advocating for students of color, survivors of sexual assault, first-generation and/or low-income students and students with disabilities, Kimiko and Bryce have proven track records of achieving meaningful progress, holding university leaders accountable and securing tangible resources that help to foster and support student achievement. Individually, Kimiko and Bryce have become giants in their respective communities, and together they are a force to be reckoned with.

Over the past two years, I have worked closely with Kimiko on various campus-wide initiatives around mental health, sexual assault and harassment, mental wellness, educational equity and support for students of marginalized identities. Time and time again her compassion and love for her communities coupled with her sharp intellect and strategic approach to organizing has led us to victory. Under her management of the Community Center Coalition, for example, student leaders from a broad range of identities were able to come together and successfully secure increased resources for our beloved community spaces. This is by no means a small achievement, as our centers have been fighting for these resources since the early 2000s.

Kimiko and Bryce are strong community-oriented activists, but beyond that, they have proven that they know how to effectively leverage their institutional roles to the benefit of students who feel voiceless in our political landscape. While on the ASSU Senate and now on the Executive Cabinet, Kimiko leverages her position to further activist-led conversations around the acts of intolerance, community center funding, undocumented student protections, Title IX reform and policy changes for increased mental health resources. As the co-Director of Disability Advocacy, Bryce leads efforts to push for a permanent disability community center after overseeing the launch and operations of the Abilities Hub, the first-ever space dedicated to students with disabilities. Moreover, Bryce successfully fought to keep Stanford’s first ever Introduction to Disability Studies class, which is now officially part of the English Department.

I am confident that if Kimiko and Bryce are elected, mental health services at Stanford will be improved, victims of sexual violence and relationship abuse will be supported in their search for justice and healing, communities of color and FLI students will have allies in student government fighting for us everyday, we will move closer to establishing a permanent disability community center and Stanford will be a safer and more supportive place for all students to grow, learn and succeed!

Kimiko and Bryce’s shared vision of uniting our campus and their commitment to and proven record of institutional change is exactly what we should want from the next ASSU Executives. I couldn’t be more enthusiastic to endorse Kimiko Hirota and Bryce Tuttle. They’re the fighters we need and champions we can count on!

— Michael Ocon ’20

Contact Michael Ocon at ocon ‘at’ stanford.edu.

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