DEBATE-KC Graduates Take National Tournaments by Storm
DEBATE-Kansas City (DKC) program graduates won numerous awards at the Cross-Examination Debate Association (CEDA) National Tournament, including the Debater of the Year honor given to Corey Fisher. Mr. Fisher debates for the University of Missouri-Kansas City (UMKC) and with partner Anthony Joseph placed second overall at the national tournament. They also earned the second and third place speaker awards out of over 200 competitors, but they were not the only successful DKC graduates at the CEDA Nationals.
The CEDA National Tournament was hosted this year by Johnson County Community College March 16 – 20 and is one of the largest and most respected college debate competitions in the world. UMKC was defeated in the final by a team from Rutgers coached by DKC legend Ryan Wash, who won the CEDA Nationals himself and made history by becoming part of the first team to ever win the other major college championship, the National Debate Tournament (NDT), in the same year.
DKC graduate Monica Medeiros advanced all the way to the elite eight at the CEDA Nationals as a freshman debating for Towson University. Her former high school debate partner at Lincoln Prep, Ellen Baker, made it to the round of 32 for the University of West Virginia. Both Ellen and Monica were coached by fellow Lincoln Prep graduate Corey Fisher during high school, and Ms. Baker’s West Virginia team was actually eliminated from the tournament by Fisher and Joseph of UMKC, a bittersweet victory.
LaToya Green, another graduate of DKC, won The Galentine Award, given to an outstanding female debate coach that demonstrates service to the community and has robust competitive success. Ms. Green was recognized for her outstanding work as the Director of Debate at California State University at Fullerton.
“In any given year one of these awards won by a DKC graduate would be impressive,” said DKC Program Director Isaac Allen. “To have so many former students succeeding at the highest levels of collegiate debate is truly a rare accomplishment. I believe it is a testament to the work DKC does to prepare students for success in college and beyond.”
During the CEDA Awards Ceremony Corey Fisher was named The Brian “Baby Jo” Johnston Debater the Year with friends and family in the CEDA awards audience. This award is the highest honor CEDA bestows on active debaters and is given to the person who demonstrates competitive success and a commitment to represent the highest values of the debate community. It is the equivalent of the Heisman Trophy for college debate.
One weekend later was the National Debate Tournament (NDT) and Corey Fisher and Anthony Joseph shined once again. They advanced all the way to the elite eight where they lost to the eventual NDT champions; the same Rutgers duo they lost to in the final round of CEDA. Corey also took home the seventh place speaker award, another accomplishment in his storied debate career.
Monica Mederios also competed at the NDT, which is an accomplishment by itself for a first-year debater. The NDT is the most difficult academic debate tournament in the country and it requires either a district tournament or at-large bid to qualify to compete.