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One hundred and eight seniors--the second highest number in history--are running for eight lifetime positions as marshals of the Class of '86.
The marshals' job begins with planning this year's Class Day and continues through all the class's reunions and other activities, according to Victor A. Koivumaki III '68, the Alumni Association's associate director for classes and reunions.
The preliminary round of voting for marshals runs tomorrow and Friday. It uses the so-called Hare System, where voters rank all the candidates by preference.
The first vote will narrow the field of 59 men and 49 women to eight men and eight women. In a second vote next week, seniors will choose four men and four women marshals.
That vote will also determine the two first marshals, who preside over meetings of the 25-member Senior Class Committee, which includes representatives from all 13 houses.
"Mostly [I'm running] because I like the class, and I like being a student at Harvard, and I always want to keep track of the class," said marshal candidate Stuart Raphael, a Currier House resident active in the Undergraduate Council.
Transfer student Steven Colarossi, chairman of the Dudley House Committee, said he's running because he wants to encourage more non-resident students to vote and run in future elections.
Kira R. Diaz of Mather House said she "would like to have a special senior week and give senior activities a new twist with creative new ideas."
In the past, the number of marshal candidates has usually ranged from 75 to 85, Koivumaki said. He said he feels the heavy turnout--the most since 1982, when 110 seniors ran--is because of students' increased interest in senior activities.
Prior to the Harvard-Radcliffe merger in 1977, men and women voted separately for their respective class marshals. The current system allows seniors to vote for both women and men candidates or either.
Those who lose out in the election for marshal can take part in their house elections to become house representatives to the Senior Class Committee, which plans events during Commencement Week.
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