1L Class Representative Candidates

Section 1

Sohni Ahluwalia

/uploadedImages/Destinations/clubsorgs/sba/elections/Sohni Ahluwalia Photo.jpgWhat does it mean to be an 1L Representative?

I sincerely think that the next two semesters are going to engage us in some of the hardest challenges of our lives to date.   With that said, the SBA offers a genuine chance to improve and enhance our upcoming experiences, and as the 1L Section 1 Representative I want to help create links between Section 1, and the entire law school community.

What are my goals as representative?

A vote for me is a vote for us.  The path ahead is full of new experiences, and I want to make sure that we each have a chance to really show who we are. I know each of my classmates who’s running, whether Tom, Brett, or Austin, or any other candidate, comes with an arsenal of awesome.  We should all play a part!  My goals are directly related to this idea: each of us, whether in Section 1, 2, or 3, a 1L, 2L, or 3L, we have this awesome opportunity to grow together and we need to act on it! It’s all about the team!

Why would I be awesome in this position?

In my opinion, the SBA is actively looking at ways to improve the experience & prestige of the USF law students. From their initiatives highlighting the challenge of active community service that keeps each of us on our toes, to hosting the events that bring us together, it’s all about team-building, and I would definitely be a dedicated, wild, fun, and clever addition to the team. 

I’m really excited for this opportunity to work with you and the SBA & no matter who you cast a vote for, make sure you get out the vote! –  In this election and in the one in November!!!!!! I’m always around to give you my scorecard on those candidates, so feel free to stop me & ask :-)  

Austin Dieter

AustinI want to start by saying how exciting it is to be starting this three-year study marathon with you all.  All the long nights and empty pots of coffee will pay off in the end.

I wanted to take the opportunity presented by the SBA to let you know a little bit about me, and why I want to be your 1L representative. I grew up in a town of about 4,000 people in Wisconsin. I attended a Division III school in Wisconsin called Wisconsin-Oshkosh where I majored in English Literature. I came to USF straight from undergrad. I know what you are all thinking, “So did you eat a lot of cheese and work on a farm?” and the answer is yes and yes. About half of my friends owned dairy farms and I was always recruited for help. Small town Wisconsin life is much slower and laid back than our lives here in San Francisco but growing up in the Midwest taught me that hard work is a replacement for almost all other deficiencies that we have.

I want to bring that hard work mentality to you as 1L representative. We are all going to be busy and, probably, overwhelmed at some point so searching for information on the next SBA event will be tedious, tiresome, and annoying. As 1L rep the most important thing that I can bring is accessibility. I will give SBA updates in class, via twitter and facebook, and I will even open up a text message group for whoever would like that feature. As law students we are all, almost by definition, type A personalities and at some point most of us will want to be involved in some group or activity, and SBA will be one of the first groups on your mind. All you will have to do is find me and I promise to be up to date on all events SBA, and if I do not have a great answer for you right away I will make it my personal duty to get you a solid answer.

Thank you for taking the time to read our candidate statements and don’t forget to rock the vote Tuesday through Thursday in the Rotunda at KH!

Tom McCarrick

Tom McCarrick 2.0Life, as well as law school, is what you make of it. I bring that mentality to each day. I am passionate about the prospect of the next three years, as well as the potential that exists in each of us individually. Regardless of my position, I will give everything I can to make the next three years the best they can be for every student.

Having met many of my classmates, I am thrilled with the kind of group we are capable of being. Beyond being bright and hardworking, each member of this class is unique. Our diversity of experiences and ideas are what make me excited every time we get together. Our diverse backgrounds and vibrant personalities reflect in the energy in class each day and the friendships formed. The character of this class is what makes me want to be the 1L representative. It would be an honor to be a representative for this group.

I, like all of you, bring a unique set of experiences with me to law school. I grew up in the East Bay, went to school at University of Arizona, then I taught English in the Republic of Korea. I cannot speak highly enough of those experiences.  Each stop on my journey represents indispensable lessons that I have learned and that I can bring to the table.

As the 1L representative for section one, I promise to fulfill all the obligations of the position, as well as assume any additional duties that may arise. I will make sure that every student's voice is heard and that every student is adequately informed. I do however realize that our time is very precious. I will keep all announcements as concise and informative as possible.

Like many of my classmates, law school has been a lifelong goal. While the realization of a goal should feel gratifying for us all, everyone knows that this is the beginning.

The University of San Francisco represents lessons I hope to learn, and experiences I have waited for my entire life. I love that in addition to strong academic standards this institution strives for a strong sense of community. In my short time here I have already noticed that USF is not like other universities. We are all truly fortunate to call USF “home”. We are fortunate for the tremendous opportunity that lay before us. Like you, I plan to make the most of it.

I look forward to getting to know each of you throughout our time at USF. 

Brett Turnage

Brett TurnageBIOGRAPHY

Brett Turnage, from Moreno Valley, California, spent the last seven years running an aftermarket auto parts manufacturing firm, Brett Turnage Industries LLC. (BTI). Before that he started one of the largest student independent newspapers on college campuses, named The X-Factor Student Newspaper, with a print circulation between 80,000-100,000. In 2005, he became publisher of X-Media, which oversaw the publication and operations of the X-Factor Student Newspaper, The Wire (Hip Hop Magazine) and Evocative Women’s Magazine - all publications in the X-Factor Empire. In 2008 he went to Nevada, interned for the Obama Campaign, and ran the Obama operations for Boulder City, Nevada. 


In my work as a journalist and activist, I witnessed many instances where justice failed. It is unfortunate that the misapplication of the law has disadvantaged thousands of people. Seeing so many deficiencies in the legal system is what pushed me into pursuing a law degree. I became involved, through the newspaper, on many issues that dealt with race relations, student/faculty rights, women’s rights, among others, and I saw the need for strong leaders, and people who believed that to be a part of a community is to be in service of that community. That belief in the value of service is why I came to law school, and the reason for my candidacy for 1L representative.

My goal as 1L representative for Section 1 is to represent my peers honestly and fairly to the Student Bar Association Board (SBA Board). I will be honest and genuine, and keep you apprised of the SBA’s activities. I will aggressively work for you by addressing your issues and by assisting you with any aspect of your student life where I can be of assistance. I will motivate and encourage 1L involvement, and educate on the different avenues available for 1st year students. I recognize that most of you are willing to offer your time and efforts to some cause, and I will see to it that you get that opportunity. Our school is our new home, and to be honest and fair to this new community we have to be active and fill it with the enthusiasm, spirit, and flavor that exude who we are, and where we are from. I am asking to be your representative to bring your spirit, ideas, and issues to the SBA board. I am asking for a position in where I will be of service to you. If it is your issue, it will be mine. I am humbly asking for your support.

Clear eyes, Full Heart…. Can’t Lose! (sorry, I had to)  

Section 2

Lauren HarrimanLauren Harriman


How can I ensure that my voice is heard by the Student Bar Association?


There are over 200 first year law students

These students all come from diverse backgrounds

These students all have something valuable to contribute to the USF Law community

There are three separate 1 L sections, and no overlap in their classes

There are 2Ls and 3Ls, all of which have experienced 1L

There are few opportunities for the sections to interact

There are even fewer opportunities for 1Ls to interact with 2Ls and 3Ls


Every student has a voice.


As 1 L Rep for Section 2, I intend to insure not only that Section 2’s voice is heard in the Student Bar Association, but that we are not isolated from the other Sections. By working closely with the Student Bar Association, and especially with the other 1 L Section Representatives, I plan to help break down the divide between the Sections. Though we do not all have classes together, we are all experiencing the First Year of law school together, and we all have something valuable to share with one another. Our community is larger than our Sections, and as 1 L Representative I will actively encourage not only the Sections, but all Years to socialize together and to work together to provide an increased sense of community. As Law Students, we are all studying in preparation for our professional lives. This means that everyone we are studying with is also potential career networking support, and as much fun as social occasions are, every social occasion also provides an opportunity to get to know our currently fellow students and future fellow professionals. In an effort to promote community at USF Law, I am promoting a network on which we will all be able to rely for the rest of our professional lives.


By electing me as the Section 2 representative, you are voicing your desire for the breakdown of the divide between the sections and the classes, and your desire for a stronger USF Law community.

Daniel Dahlin

I decided to attend USF School of Law for a number of reasons, but one of them I have heard echoed by many of my classmates. The reason that comes up takes many forms in our vocabulary, but is best described as, “service.” I, like so many of you want to serve others and be an advocate for those that need a voice most. Law school will be, for many of us, the door opening to continue that mission.

The goal of the USF Student Bar Association is to represent the student body, and to “achieve the betterment of the law students in their professional and social interests” (USF SBA information page, Facebook). I would like to be the person that helps our class and our section be heard by the SBA, and by the law school. To be selected to advocate for our section, and our class would be a huge honor, and not one I would take lightly.

If elected to represent our section I can make a few promises. First, I pledge to be accountable to both the SBA and to the section. I will participate in meetings and make time to hear students voice their concerns, questions, and ideas. Second, I will promise to represent the fantastic diversity that we have. There are so many voices with so many ideas and concerns. I will do my upmost to get all heard and represented. Finally, I promise to serve the section. I will give as much time and energy as necessary to the students and the section.

The opportunity to be a leader and a servant for the 1L class of 2015 is quite exciting. I would like to take the leadership skills that I gained from my time as U.S. Army combat Infantry leader and put them to the test for us. Our section is filled to overflowing with the best and the brightest, and it would be an honor to be selected to represent such an amazing group. 

Cari Heicklen

Cari HeicklenA legal education at the University of San Francisco School of Law promises the ability to acquire the skills that will enable us to contribute to bettering the world most effectively. That we chose this same school for the same reason--to become the best version of ourselves--is so far the most inspiring element of starting this academic venture. For the next three years, we will have the opportunity to learn both in the classroom and with and through each other. I am running for our section two SBA representative so that our class does not miss a single opportunity to take advantage of these three life determining years.

Being new to San Francisco, new to law, and new to the USF community; I am thrilled and excited to be here and to get to know you. This excitement will translate into the energy to seek you out and find out what you need from your 1L year and to create opportunities and access to these resources.

It takes a 1L to fully understand the 1L lifestyle and schedule. But a well-rounded education can never happen in the seclusion of the library alone. We are starting USF at an exciting time, and I am eager to be a part of the Centennial Challenge. I believe our section can help the greater campus community clock 10,000 hours of community service, by working to create events that put our new-discovered legal skills to work while also encouraging interaction with the people and social problems that brought us to USF’s door in the first place.

In addition to creating far-reaching community service opportunities for our section to participate in, the tourist in me cannot wait to get out and experience this city. By organizing section-specific social breaks for us to get to know each other outside of class and bar night, we will be able to get to know our section-two colleagues. I would love to organize monthly hiking opportunities to Mt. Tamalpais, Bald Mountain, Mission Peak, or Alamere Falls. Perhaps we can take a pre-Civil Procedure, Friday morning, admission-free hour stroll through the Japanese Tea Garden in Golden Gate Park. Or sip wine at the Planetarium on a late Thursday night at the Academy of Sciences. Taking a break from work with the people who understand what we are going through best is invaluable.

If elected as your section two representative, I will do a great job and will strive to encourage the environment we came here for in order to become the lawyers and people we want to become. Please give me the opportunity to get to know and learn from you.

Stephanie Mazzoncini

Stephanie MazzonciniI want to be a 1L rep first and foremost because I love to get involved. I want to find my place in law school and start establishing myself here and I feel like SBA will be an amazing way to do just that. It has always been important to me to be an active member of my school community and I want to be able to continue that through my graduate experience. Being involved in student government has always been a goal of mine and I have always ended up finding reasons not to or lacking the confidence to go for it. I want this experience to be different, and I want to start tenaciously going after becoming my most outgoing self. Beyond just my personal goals for this venture, however, I want to be a voice for my classmates. I want them to be able to feel like they have a friend on the board that they can come to with their ideas and concerns and I want to be a person that they have confidence and trust in to see those ideas and concerns through. I will work hard for and with my classmates, to make both their experience and mine the best that they can be here.

The platform that I will run on will be one with three goals: first, to be the friendliest advocate possible for my classmates. Second, to be the voice of my classmates in affecting change through the SBA. Third, to do all I can to facilitate the communication between my classmates and the administration as best as possible.

Lahdan Rahmati

My ultimate goal is to help change the world into a place where justice and peace are a part of every individual’s life.  Though the first year of law school will undoubtedly take up a significant amount of time filled by studying, it is just the right time to get involved with organizations to help improve the new community in formation.  I have experience mentoring children’s classes, peers, and as a previous resident, I have worked closely with law enforcement to make one of the communities lived in a safer and close-knit community.  My goals in the SBA would be to help facilitate a safer community; to help hit the Centennial Challenge service goal which will increase the visibility of the Law School students in surrounding communities and to represent the diversity that exists on campus.  I’d like to encourage more intercultural activities and idea-sharing between the amazing people at USF.  By working with the SBA, I expect to contribute my perspective, ideas and service in a way that upholds and enhances honor and pride for all students and faculty.  

Section 3

Benny Allen

Benny AllenLaw school is difficult for most people; however, part-time evening students face unique challenges.  Working, sometimes full time, family responsibilities or returning to school after many years are just some of the issues that face section three students as a whole.  Student resources and activities are often geared for the benefit of full-time day students.

I am strongly committed to equal accessibility of services and activities for all students so that the USF law school experience can be rich and fulfilling for everyone.  Living and working in San Francisco for eighteen years, being active in local political and civic organizations promoting women’s rights as well as the interests of the Asian and gay communities, I am uniquely qualified to represent the diverse interests of our section.  I have strong communication skills and will be out-spoken and persuasive in promoting the needs and ideals of part-time evening students.