Executive Committee

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President - James Vassallo


James Vassallo is a Master's in Public Health Candidate, with aspirations of working in direct patient care and medical administration.  Prior to pursuing his Master's, James graduated from Stony Brook with a Bachelor's in Biology and Sociology, where he worked in a number of roles as a student leader  to improve student engagement and increase transparency between students and administration. As President of GSO, James seeks to continue such efforts as he works collaboratively with students, faculty and administration to improve the overall graduate student experience at Stony Brook University


Vice President - Robert Presser


Robert is a second-year Masters in Business Administration student on the Marketing track. He received his Bachelors of Arts in Music from Stony Brook University in 2017, and he hopes do promotional work at a music organization after he graduates in May. Robert currently works at the Staller Center and with the Faculty Student Association, and he serves on the College of Business Dean's Graduate Student Advisory Council and the Hillel Board of Directors.

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Treasurer - XiaoQING Zhang


Xiaoqing Zhang is a doctoral candidate in the school of Health Technology and Management. She served as the department’s Senator in 2017- 18, and she is the President of the Schomburg Apartments Resident Association (S.A.R.A.). As a Treasurer, Xiaoqing is committed to supporting initiatives within the Budget Committee aimed at allocating funds to programs and activities with high impact on the academic and professional potential of our graduate students as well as some cultural social events. As chair of the Budget Committee, Xiaoqing works to increase funding for travel awards and conference fees among others.

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Secretary - Luigi Pesce-Ibarra


Luigi is an international student from Maracaibo, Venezuela who came to USA 8 years ago. Luigi is a 4th year PhD student in Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, with two Bachelor degrees in Psychology and Biology, and a Master’s in Neuroscience. Luigi’s current research efforts focus on quantifying post-concussion balance deficits while recording electrical activity in the brain, heart, and leg muscles. In addition, Luigi speaks 4 languages; Spanish, Italian, Portuguese and English. As Secretary Luigi works with senators, monitors committees, and works to advocate for international students and improve the quality of graduate education. 


Speaker - Matt Brounley


Matt Brounley is a 6th year PhD student in Music History and Theory. His research focuses on consumer cultures in the musical instrument industry and is partially based on his career in musical instrument sales. At Stony Brook, he teaches a wide variety of courses in Jazz, Rock, and Hip-Hop history. He lives in Brooklyn with his fiancé Jess and his dog Monty. As speaker, he is committed to properly representing the needs of the graduate student population and helping students learn more about GSO resources. Please feel free to email him with any questions, confidential requests, or for general information about how to get involved in the GSO.