Our Leadership

With the launch of the Bard Democrats in March of 2017, it quickly became necessary to organize its operations. This is the core of leaders who form the Spring 2017 Leadership Team, an interim cabinet acting under a provisional constitution until a formal leadership can be elected in the Fall.



Axel Clavier (PS, '18) founded the Bard Democrats in March of 2017. As its Acting President, he is leading a coalition-building strategy which aims to get as many voices involved as possible. His goal is to create a framework that can channel the energy of the Bard Community into effective collective action. Axel assembled the Interim Cabinet on April 10 and hopes to bring even more leaders on board from all quarters of Bard society as the organization grows. He is the leader of Reform, the organization's liberal progressive caucus.

As Acting President, Axel leads the organization by providing vision and strategic focus.

He can be reached at president@barddems.com.




Shayna A. Koczur (GIS, '18) has a deep interest in the welfare of the United States. She works for the UN and serves as the Women's Caucus Chair of the College Democrats of New York. She has also served as an intern for National Immigration Forum and served as Legislative Aid to Senator Ray Lesniack of New Jersey, gaining experience in the legislative process and activism. She has developed a passion for creating inclusive and effective domestic policy that fosters the well being of the United States and its people. Her goals are to foster dialogue and forge a space for community action and idea-crafting that can lead to legislation that represents the Bard community. She is a member of Reform.

As acting Vice-President, Shayna supports the operations of the President and the organization, and represents the President in his absence. She has taken the lead in recruiting for the organization and the cabinet.

She can be reached at sk9407@bard.edu.




Jacob E. Lester (Mathematics '21) is a native of Brooklyn and Queens, NY. He wants to make politics less divisive and advocates free speech and intellectual conversation/debate. He has experience working with the Sanders campaign of 2016. His priority for Bard Democrats is currently to expand caucuses to represent all walks of Democrat ideology. He is the leader of the Progressive Caucus

The Chair is the elected representative of the caucuses to the cabinet and legislative leader. 

Jacob can be reached at  jl6650@bard.edu.



Communications Director

Emily Münstedt (Conservatory and PS, '20) is mostly interested in how foreign and domestic affairs are influenced by political theory. She is from Boston and is becoming more interested in local politics. Emily wants to get as many opinions as possible from the Bard community and get those voices heard. Her non-political interests include playing the cello, kayaking, and watching the sunset from Manor lawn.

As Communications Director, Emily coordinates our messaging and message dissemination. She also keeps our website http://barddems.com up to date. 

She can be reached at em5951@bard.edu.



Tinatin Bezhanidze (Econ, '20) is an international student from Georgia. Her prime interest is economics and economic policies. Her other interests include political studies and international relationships. She wants to become more involved at Bard and encourage other students to do the same, as she believes that we can change our future if we stay active.

As Treasurer Tinatin will manage the flow of money in and out of Organization and handle fundraising.

She can be reached at tb2713@bard.edu.