Meet Candidate for Treasurer, Jake Diamond-Reivich

Meet Candidate for Treasurer, Jake Diamond-Reivich

Jake Diamond-Reivich (which, after clarification, is pronounced Rye-vich, not Reh-vich, though JDR doesn’t care what you call him), is an active member in HTC, the Witness. Inspire. Act. Club, and is a musician. He will be running against Catherine Liu in the general elections, which start on the 20th of March, after the Career Symposium.

HB: Why new toilet paper?

JDR: My analogy for our toilet paper is if you go to a restaurant and you take a napkin, it’s as if someone de-plyed the napkin and gave you like half the napkin to go to the bathroom. And I think that’s … seriously, we’re one of the best schools in the country, we’ve got huge accommodations and appliances. And yeah, we have toilet paper which resembles 17th century papyrus or something. A lot of people have ideas which may only affect small numbers of kids, but if we got new toilet paper, there’s no one that would not enjoy that.

HB: Would administration allow this?

JDR: If we could find a way to do it that is economically sensible, then I don’t see why they would be against it. It’s not as if administration wants us to be uncomfortable when we go to the bathroom.

HB: Have you talked to administration about this?

JDR: I have not. I’ve talked to some teachers; I talked with Mr. Imaizumi a little bit, we had a little debate about it, but not any administrators. I’ve talked to teachers who know what the budgeting is like at Harriton.

HB: How about the fact that we have contracts with toilet paper companies?

JDR: Well, that’s a shame, but toilet paper companies have different levels of toilet paper. You know, Scott: soft, extra-soft, super-ultra-soft, super-duper-ultra-soft … I made the last one up, but you know. They may be willing, especially if we would be spending more money on their contract.

HB: What kind of fruit best describes you?

JDR: Have you ever seen a dragonfruit before? I’ve been to Australia, and they’ve got dragonfruit … it’s similar to me in that it’s a little bit out there. It’s called a dragonfruit and has no business being called a dragonfruit, because it doesn’t resemble a dragon at all.

HB: You spoke about advisory changes?

JDR: I’m in the freshman mentor program. I applied freshman year, so this is my second year being a mentor. I like the program and I think the freshmen get a lot out of it and the discussions based lessons we create .

I think that for sophomores, juniors, and senior advisories, I don’t want to say useless, but I think if you want to offer to those kids the 25 minutes to nap or just do their homework, they would take it and often say they were getting a better use of their time.

The video said ‘get rid of it’, and some people may say that’s idealistic, I think that would honestly be a better use of time, to let them use it like a RAM period, something where you can go see teachers for help. Advisory, as it is now, is this one class where you’re sitting with a teacher doing nothing. Why can’t you go take a test with another teacher? But, on A days, why can’t seniors or juniors who can drive get to leave early and go home? That would be another issue which I would look for.

HB: You wish to see a free Advisory or free RAM?

JDR: No, I don’t think that it is up for me to say what the ‘best’ change is. As an officer, it would be my responsibility to bring to light that a change can be made and ask the students what would be a good alternative. But, a free, I think that’s an acceptable change.

HB: What do you bring to this office which you feel is essentially JDR?

JDR: The ideas are part of it. One of the things I want to talk about in my speech is that I think a lot of people think the elections are idea-based — whoever has the best ideas should win. I think that what’s more important is the ability to execute. Let’s say that one had these great ideas, and their opposing candidate had no ideas. If the candidate with no ideas won, he or she could still use their opponent’s ideas — just because the candidate with no ideas won, that doesn’t mean that their opponent’s ideas are off limits. What’s more important about a candidate, I think, is the ability to lead and get out there to implement those ideas and instruct people to implement those ideas in the best way. So, It’s not about having the best ideas, its about executing those ideas in general.

HB: Why are you qualified for this position?

JDR: I think I represent the student body well. We have a lot of geniuses at our school but I’m not like a 4.0. I didn’t get a perfect score on my SAT, but I’m a decently smart kid … I think I’m an everyman or everywoman.

I think I’m very approachable, and I’m a little bit of a goofball – I’m willing to admit it. I think that sociability is a key part of being a leader. You don’t want people to be put off by you. And you’ve got to be able to interact with every facet of the community.

I’m part of HTC, I play the drums at the show, I’m very connected to them: I know HTC people, I know athletics, I know the music department, WIA [Witness. Inspire. Act] and the community service aspect of the school. I’m branched out and immersed in the school in a way a lot of people aren’t. I think I’m a nice enough guy that I won’t intimidate, and I’d like to be able to effectively move people in a positive way.

HB: What you described could quite easily describe a president or a secretary. Why treasurer?

JDR: That’s a good point. I’ll be honest, I was thinking of running for president probably up until about October. I was president in 8th grade, so I was thinking of running for president. I think the two candidates going at it are great candidates and they deserve the role and being that they were officers last year, it would be a smoother transition into a new set of officers with having the president being someone who was an officer last year.

But, the main thing I want to do is make a change at Harriton. I think that Treasurer is possibly, I don’t want to say, more effective than President, but definitely is up there. Vice President is very in charge of Mr. Harriton, which I’m planning to be a part of a lot, but thats a staple of it. That’s something they can do, but it’s not like a new thing. Secretary, in charge of communications, and while I’m not super artistically inclined, I think I could do a good job there. There’s sergeant-at-arms, which is more internal planning, but I don’t really see myself there. But as treasurer, with control of the money, you control which things should be embellished at our school. People say you have to be great at math, but it’s not like calculus. You don’t need an A in BC Calculus to be treasurer. A lot of the math is simple addition – you’re doing reimbursements.

What you do have control of is where allocations go, where the Cookie Grant could help create change in other clubs, so I think it’s more about creating change – kind of a double entendre, money joke. Creating change, in a monetary sense, is why I want to be treasurer.

HB: What does treasurer do?

JDR: They are in charge of maintaining and keeping house on the books, sort of, the monetary sense of things. That’s the only thing going through our organization. It’s not like we have products to source, just money.

Reimbursements and the Cookie Grants are a great things and writing checks. For Mr. Harriton, the main focus is the advertising sale; this year, Willie Marks did a great job and brought in 3,200 dollars in advertising sales, so I hope to do that and more next year.

What I want to do if I win is become sort of, not a bank, but a lot of kids want to start clubs and don’t really know how to start, and sometimes it takes money or guidance. I’d like to provide both of those.

HB: How would you do treasurer next year?

JDR: I’m a leading member of the WIA [Witness. Inspire. Act] Club and what I always write in my [college essays when I have to talk about leadership], is ‘lead from the bottom’. It’s not like an overarching ‘here’s what you do,’ lead-from-the-bottom is a support system. If anyone in my committee wants to do anything, of course I’m going to say go for it – I’m going to support you. But if it doesn’t work out, they can fall back on the tasks which we have to do every year: Cookie Grant, selling ads, reimbursements.

I want to branch out more, we’re not a bank, but if a student needs money for something scholastic – starting a new club, planning an event, donating money – the Finance Committee will be a mechanism where they can come and get that. Either it’s a loan where you’ll have to pay it back if you’re doing something like a club that will raise money, so you might have to pay a certain percent back.