Aaron Thomas Memorial Invitational

2020 — US


Dear Colleagues,

You and your programme are cordially invited to attend the 3rd Annual Aaron Thomas Memorial Invitational to be hosted virtually on November 13 & 14, 2020. We are committed to having an excellent judging pool that will be one of the best in the entire Midwest and beautiful, unique awards.

We offer Policy debate in the following divisions: Varsity (contestants will be eligible for Kansas Debate Coaches Invitational bids), Junior Varsity, Novice, and a first-timer Rookie division. We will also offer a single day Open division on Saturday. We are currently gauging interest in hosting multiple divisions of Lincoln-Douglas Debate and Public Forum - if you are interested in the tournament hosting those events, please reach out to me.

          Additionally, we are actively looking for quality judges who have collegiate debate experience, if you know of any current college debaters please have them contact me. We are able to compensate experienced and qualified judges $10 per round. Interested judges should fill out the Judge Sign Up Tab

For those of you who were not blessed with the opportunity to know Aaron Thomas, he was one of the most joyous personalities to ever grace debate. An avid believer of debate's transformative power, Aaron was an exceptional debater at the legendary Kansas City Central programme where he racked up wins and friends amongst opponents and judges alike. He went on to debate at Kansas City Kansas Community College while actively volunteering at his urban debate league. Aaron was a pinnacle staple at in the UDL in Kansas City where he coached multiple teams throughout high and middle schools where he was a friendly face and a beacon of support for countless kids. He was beloved by students and coaches throughout the national circuit and beyond. Aaron tragically died in a car accident on January 1st, 2015. His impact on the community was as heartfelt as his loss was sorrowing. His passion and dedication to students and commitment to solidifying opportunities for young people to learn and grow are the guiding principles in the hosting of this tournament. 

We will offer awards for all elimination participants awards in each division as well as unique speaker awards. Like last year, we will allow individual speaker awards to accept their placing with their choice of Walk Up music for our Zoom Awards Ceremony. Sweepstakes awards will be awarded to the top three placing programmes with a weighted formula which prioritizes the higher divisions of competition. We will also be presenting the Jane Rinehart Coach of the Year Award and will accept nominations up to the week prior to the tournament. Our goal is to have a true and proper awards ceremony, please have your students be prepared for that.

We are actively looking for quality judges who have collegiate debate experience, if you know of any current college debaters please have them contact me.

Sohail Jouya
Tournament Director
Aaron Thomas Memorial Invitational