Groves Falcon Invitational

2018 — Beverly Hills, MI, MI/US

Linda Badri Paradigm

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I have been judging public forum debate since 2015 and I will try to keep this paradigm simple and short.

- I expect everyone in the round to be respectful and professional.

- Don’t talk too fast or too loud and definitely don’t talk over each other in crossfire.

- I want both teams to weigh their impacts.

- I also would like to hear clash between points from both cases in rebuttals and following speeches.

- And finally don’t wait until summary to cite sources, this should be done in constructive and in rebuttal speeches.

Good luck do your best!

Dan Berwick Paradigm

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Mateusz Borowiecki Paradigm

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Matthew Burtell Paradigm

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Alex Dontu Paradigm

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Derek Erwin Paradigm

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Sarah Flaim Paradigm

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Beth Fowler Paradigm

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Lee Fretenborough Paradigm

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Keri Guevara Paradigm

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James Hardy Paradigm

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William Harris Paradigm

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Keturah Heath Paradigm

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Jonah Hill Paradigm

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Good day debaters!

I prefer my rounds to be done in rap battle format. I will flow your flow as best I can providing that you speak rhythmically and with poetic contentions. If needed, I will provide a beat of 120 bpm. If you would like you may prepare your own or use a royalty free one off of the internet.

Rachel Hirsch Paradigm

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Be polite. I vote on good arguments that prove your claim with valid evidence, analysis, and impacts. Please state your claim, contentions, and impacts slowly and clearly. Beyond that you may speak at whatever speed is comfortable to you as long as you speak clearly.

Joshua Holmes Paradigm

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Azaria Jack Paradigm

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Nick Joseph Paradigm

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Mark Kanipe Paradigm

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Toni LaDue Paradigm

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John Lawson Paradigm

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I am the Co- Director of Debate at Wylie E. Groves HS in Beverly Hills, MI. I have coached high school debate for 45 years, debated at the University of Michigan for 3.5 years and coached at Michigan for one year (in the mid 1970s). I have coached at summer institutes for 45 years.

Please add me to your email chains at

On the 2017-18 education topic, I judged 28 rounds at the SDI, U of M Institute Final Tournament, Okemos HS @Lansing Community College (MI), West Bloomfield HS (MI ), Spartan Classic at MSU, Varsity and Novice State Finals, JV State Finals, Detroit Urban Debate League Championships, Montgomery Bell Academy Southern Bell Forum and the University of Michigan, voting affirmative 17 times. I have also judged three rounds on the 2017-18 NDT/CEDA college topic (health insurance), voting negative in all three rounds. I judged eight public forum rounds on the background checks and Catalonian independence topics, voting pro four times. I taught at the SDI two week institute and administered a one week Detroit Urban Debate League institute at Wayne State University.

On the 2018-19 immigration topic, I coached at the two week Spartan Debate Institute and judged 28 rounds at the SDI two week tournament, the University of Michigan Institutes final tournament, West Bloomfield HS, Wayne State University, Detroit Urban Debate League, Groves HS, Michigan State University, Sylvania, Ohio, the University of Michigan and MIFA State Debate Finals, voting affirmative 15 times. I've also judged three public forum debates on the UNCLOS and drug price controls topics, voting pro once.

On the 2019-2020 arms sales topic, I coached at the two week Spartan Debate Institute and administered and taught the coaches workshop at the one week Detroit Urban Debate League Institute. Thus far, I've judged 28 rounds at the SDI Two Week Tournament, West Bloomfield HS, University of Kentucky, University of Michigan, Wayne State, Michigan State, Evanston Township HS and the University of Michigan Institutes final tournament, voting affirmative 13 times. I've also judged two middle school public forum rounds on the "One Belt, One Road" resolution, splitting one pro and one con ballot.

I am open to most types of argument but default to a policy making perspective on debate rounds. Speed is fine; if unintelligible I will warn several times, continue to flow but it's in the debater's ball park to communicate the content of arguments and evidence and their implication or importance. Traditional on- case debate, disads, counterplans and kritiks are fine. However, I am more familiar with the literature of so-called non mainstream political philosophies (Marxism, neoliberalism, libertarianism, objectivism) than with many post modern philosophers and psychoanalytic literature. If your kritik becomes an effort to obfuscate through mindless jargon, please note that your threshold for my ballot becomes substantially higher.

At the margins of critical debate, for example, if you like to engage in "semiotic insurrection," interface psychoanalysis with political action, defend the proposition that 'death is good,' advocate that debate must make a difference outside the "argument room" or just play games with Baudrilliard, it would be the better part of valor to not pref me. What you might perceive as flights of intellectual brilliance I am more likely to view as incoherent babble or antithetical to participation in a truly educational activity. Capitalism/neoliberalism, securitization, anthropocentrism, Taoism, anti-blackness, queer theory, IR feminism, ableism and ageism are all kritiks that I find more palatable for the most part than the arguments listed above. I have voted for "death good" and Schlag, escape the argument box/room, arguments more times than I would like to admit (on the college and HS levels)-though I think these arguments are either just plain dumb or inapplicable to interscholastic debate respectively. Now, it is time to state that my threshold for voting for even these arguments has gotten much higher. For example, even a single, persuasive turn or solid defensive position against these arguments would very likely be enough for me to vote against them.

I am less likely to vote on theory, not necessarily because I dislike all theory debates, but because I am often confronted with competing lists of why something is legitimate or illegitimate, without any direct comparison or attempt to indicate why one position is superior to the other on the basis of fairness and/or education. In those cases, I default to voting to reject the argument and not the team, or not voting on theory at all.

In T or framework debates regarding critical affirmatives or Ks on the negative, I often am confronted with competing impacts (often labeled disadvantages with a variety of "clever" names) without any direct comparison of their relative importance. Again, without the comparisons, you will never know how a judge will resolve the framework debate (likely with a fair amount of judge intervention).

Additionally, though I personally believe that the affirmative should present a topical plan or an advocacy reasonably related to the resolution, I am somewhat open to a good performance related debate based on a variety of cultural, sociological and philosophical concepts. My personal antipathy to judge intervention and willingness to change if persuaded make me at least open to this type of debate. Finally, I am definitely not averse to voting against the kritik on either the affirmative or negative on framework and topicality-like arguments. On face, I don't find framework arguments to be inherently exclusionary.

As to the use of gratuitous/unnecessary profanity in debate rounds: "It don't impress me much!" Using terms like "fuck" or "bullshit" doesn't increase your ethos. I am quite willing to deduct speaker points for their systemic use. The use of such terms is almost always unnecessary and often turns arguments into ad hominem attacks.

Finally, I am a fan of the least amount of judge intervention as possible. The line by line debate is very important; so don't embed your clash so much that the arguments can't be "unembedded" without substantial judge intervention. I'm not a "truth seeker" and would rather vote for arguments I don't like than intervene directly with my preferences as a judge. Generally, the check on so-called "bad" arguments and evidence should be provided by the teams in round, not by me as the judge. This also provides an educationally sound incentive to listen and flow carefully, and prepare answers/blocks to those particularly "bad" arguments so as not to lose to them. Phrasing this in terms of the "tech" v. "truth" dichotomy, I try to keep the "truth" part to as close to zero (%) as humanly possible in my decision making. "Truth" can sometimes be a fluid concept and you might not like my perspective on what is the "correct" side of a particular argument..

An additional word or two on paperless debate and new arguments. There are many benefits to paperless debate, as well as a few downsides. For debaters' purposes, I rarely take "flashing" time out of prep time, unless the delay seems very excessive. I do understand that technical glitches do occur. However, once electronic transmission begins, all prep by both teams must cease immediately. This would also be true if a paper team declares "end prep" but continues to prepare. I will deduct any prep time "stolen" from the team's prep and, if the problem continues, deduct speaker points. Prep includes writing, typing and consulting with partner about strategy, arguments, order, etc.
With respect to new arguments, I do not automatically disregard new arguments until the 2AR (since there is no 3NR). Prior to that time, the next speaker should act as a check on new arguments or cross applications by noting what is "new" and why it's unfair or antithetical to sound educational practice. I do not subscribe to the notion that "if it's true, it's not new" as what is "true" can be quite subjective.

Adrienne Logeman Paradigm

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Mark Maillia Paradigm

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Tim McPherson Paradigm

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As an old school judge I tend to make my decisions on the clash in the round and how well/clearly the arguments are developed/responded to. A dropped argument does not mean an automatic win for the team if it is not key to the main argument being presented. Evidence is important to me and arguments based on quality of sources, analysis on importance of post dates info, etc are acceptable but should not be the main focus of the debate. I also consider how well the teams treat each other, and rudeness can impact how I view the round. Finally, the last two speeches should be narrowed to winning arguments and articulated in such a way to be convincing. I will make my judgments based on what you say in the final speech, not what I think you meant.


Timothy Meloche Paradigm

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Brad Meloche Paradigm

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quick note for pf/ld teams reading this - as I most commonly just policy, most of the below is about that. don't overadapt by going fast or using policy lingo. the only PF/LD-specific things that are important to me: 1) don't shake my hand after the round and 2) evidence must be quoted, not paraphrased.

Brad Meloche (my last name rhymes with "Josh" not "brioche")

he/him pronouns

Affiliations: Wayne State University, Niles West High School, Seaholm High School, Birmingham Covington School, the School of Hard Knocks, the School of Rock, a school of fish

Email: (I ALWAYS want to be on the email chain)

The short version -

Tech > truth. A dropped argument is assumed to be contingently true. "Tech" is obviously not completely divorced from "truth" but you have to actually make the true argument for it to matter. In general, if your argument has a claim, warrant, and implication then I am willing to vote for it, but there are some arguments that are pretty obviously morally repugnant and I am not going to entertain them. They might have a claim, warrant, and implication, but they have zero (maybe negative?) persuasive value and nothing is going to change that. I'm not going to create an exhaustive list, but any form of "oppression good" and many forms of "death good" fall into this category.


Non-traditional – Debate is a game. It might be MORE than a game to some folks, but it is still a game. Claims to the contrary are unlikely to gain traction with me. Given that, I'm a good judge for T/framework. One might even say it makes the game work. I don't think the correct palliative for inequalities in the debate community is to take a break from debating the topic. Approaches to answering T/FW that rely on implicit or explicit "killing debate good" arguments are nonstarters.

Related thoughts:

1) I'm not a very good judge for arguments, aff or neg, that involve saying that an argument is your "survival strategy". I don't want the pressure of being the referee for deciding how you should live your life.

2) The aff saying "USFG should" doesn't equate to roleplaying as the USFG

3) I am really not interested in playing (or watching you play) cards, a board game, etc. as an alternative to competitive speaking. Just being honest.

Kritiks – Scientists predict that we will begin to see the catastrophic impacts of climate change within the next three decades and I would really prefer I don't waste any of that time thinking about baudrillard/bataille/other high theory nonsense that has nothing to do with anything. If a K does not engage with the substance of the aff it is not a reason to vote negative. A lot of times these debates end and I am left thinking "so what?" and then I vote aff because the plan solves something and the alt doesn't. Good k debaters make their argument topic and aff-specific.

Unless told specifically otherwise I assume that life is preferable to death. The onus is on you to prove that a world with no value to life/social death is worse than being biologically dead.

I am skeptical of the pedagogical value of frameworks/roles of the ballot/roles of the judge that don’t allow the affirmative to weigh the benefits of hypothetical enactment of the plan against the K.

I tend to give the aff A LOT of leeway in answering floating PIKs, especially when they are introduced as "the alt is compatible with politics" and then become "you dropped the floating PIK to do your aff without your card's allusion to the Godfather" (I thought this was a funny joke until I judged a team that PIKed out of a two word reference to Star Wars. h/t to GBS GS.). In my experience, these debates work out much better for the negative when they are transparent about what the alternative is and just justify their alternative doing part of the plan from the get go.

Theory – theory arguments that aren't some variation of “conditionality bad” aren't reasons to reject the team. These arguments pretty much have to be dropped and clearly flagged in the speech as reasons to vote against the other team for me to consider voting on them. That being said, I don't understand why teams don't press harder against obviously abusive CPs/alternatives (uniform 50 state fiat, consult cps, utopian alts, floating piks). Theory might not be a reason to reject the team, but it's not a tough sell to win that these arguments shouldn't be allowed. If the 2NR advocates a K or CP I will not default to comparing the plan to the status quo absent an argument telling me to. New affs bad is definitely not a reason to reject the team and is also not a justification for the neg to get unlimited conditionality (something I've been hearing people say).

Topicality/Procedurals – By default, I view topicality through the lens of competing interpretations, but I could certainly be persuaded to do something else. Specification arguments that are not based in the resolution or that don't have strong literature proving their relevance are rarely a reason to vote neg. It is very unlikely that I could be persuaded that theory outweighs topicality. Policy teams don’t get a pass on T just because K teams choose not to be topical. Plan texts should be somewhat well thought out. If the aff tries to play grammar magic and accidentally makes their plan text "not a thing" I'm not going to lose any sleep after voting on presumption/very low solvency.

Points (updated 10/13/17 because inflation is reaching Weimar Germany levels) - My average point scale is consistently 28.2-29.5. Points below 27.5 are reserved for "epic fails" in argumentation or extreme offensiveness (I'm talking racial slurs, not light trash talking/mocking - I love that) and points above 29.5 are reserved for absolutely awesome speeches. I cannot see myself going below 26.5 absent some extraordinary circumstances that I cannot imagine. All that being said, they are completely arbitrary and entirely contextual. Things that influence my points: 30% strategy, 60% execution, 10% style. Saying "baudy" caps your points at 28.7.

Cheating - I won't initiate clipping/ethics challenges, mostly because I don't usually follow along with speech docs. If you decide to initiate one, you have to stake the round on it. Unless the tournament publishes specific rules on what kind of points I should award in this situation, I will assign the lowest speaks possible to the loser of the ethics challenge and ask the tournament to assign points to the winner based on their average speaks.

I won't evaluate evidence that is "inserted" but not actually read as part of my decision.

A high school specific note -

I am employed by a public school district. If you plan on introducing arguments that would violate anti-harassment codes or rules banning the introduction of sexually explicit materials in the classroom, you should either strike me or not read those arguments in front of me. If I think a round is getting close to a point where I would not be able to explain my decision to stay in the room to a disciplinary board/school administration, I reserve the right to remove myself from the round and make a decision accordingly.

Inspired by Buntin

Doug Bandow ------------x-------------------------------------------- Doug Husic

multiple condo-------------x-------------------------------------------Marie Kondo

pounders/"X pounds the DA"-----------------------------------------------------x--- thumpers/"X thumps the DA"

thumpers/"X thumps the DA" ----------------------------------------------------x---- yeeters/"X yeets the DA"

Eleanor/Chidi --------------------------x------------------------------ Eleanor/Tahani

untropical affs ---x----------------------------------------------------- untopical affs

pigs ---x----------------------------------------------------- the average human

buttercream fillin' --x------------------------------------------------------ russia fill-in

free market of ideas ------------------------------------------------x-------- farmers market of ideas

dinner roll ------x-------------------------------------------------- role of the ballot

timecube -------------------------------------------------------x- Jeremy Bearimy

Cats -----------------------------Bats--------------------------- Insects

Monster Zero Ultra x-------------------------------------------------------- every other liquid

Phil Mold Paradigm

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Staci Nazareth Paradigm

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Abby Nelson Paradigm

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Troy Peterson Paradigm

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Soroya Pierre-Van Artsen Paradigm

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Sylvie Pohl Paradigm

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Sathvik Rajagopalan Paradigm

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Wylie E. Groves 20'

X University 24'

add me to the email chain:


- A love a good T debate ... unless it is substantial

- However, that being said, I am not opposed to noting voting for it.

- I think that there needs to be a significant amount done on the interpretation debate. On that interpretation debate, standards/rzns to prefer need to be impacted out. For me, personally, I like examples on T debates (ie what ground do you lose, how the affirmative doesn't give it to you, and why that matters). Additionally, there need to be specific explanations of your standards and how they are better than the affs or vice versa.

- For the Aff, reasonability is definitely the move and the interpretation debate is where it comes down to. Whether the aff is given reasonability is up to debate


- I am perfectly fine with them. How competitive or what type of competition the counterplan must embody is up to debate. I am open to voting on all kinds of PICs. I will vote on and hear any type of counterplan.

- For the aff, I am most persuaded by the permutation debate and comparative analysis of the plan v. the counterplan. If you do that, probs will get you some advantage on the counterplan

- if the aff kicks an adv but concede the counterplan solves that adv --- ill let the neg go with it.

- I will listen to process CPs, Consult CPs, etc. but again whether they are competitive or legitimate is up for debate.


- Yes. I am the same as my coach, Dr. Ryan Nierman --- "There should be a clear link to the aff. Yes, there can be zero risk. The overviews should focus on why your impacts outweigh and turn the case. Let the story of the DA be revealed on the line-by-line." However, the story can be in the overview, but it should be focused on the impact level debating

- for the Aff, I am must persuaded by link turns. Impact turns are fine and do become fun debates to watch, but link turns are fun!


- I LOVE THEM. I run all types of kritiks when debating and I'm open to hearing them (in other words yes Baudrillard, DnG, etc.). However, that being said couple of things need to happen because I am not familiar in all literature. First, buzz words need to be explained. Second, link to the aff should be clear and articulated clearly. I am most persuaded by re-highlighted/cut pieces of evidence from the opposing team as links. Third, there should be a clear, contingent story of the K from the overview or the line by line. Yes, this means you can read your freakishly long overview, but the cross-application to the line by line portion must be explained again and not "cross apply x author" for that is confusing. Fourth, the alternative must be clear, resolve the links, and just solve in general. The nexus questions need to be answered: What does the alt do? How does it do it? Does it solve the aff? What does the world look like post alternative?. Without a clear explanation of the alternative, it will be tough for me to go your way. However, I am open to kicking the alternative and going for the K as a case turn. That is probs the move.

Outside of the proper page, I need to know what the role of the judge/ballot is sort of, a clear fw for the debate, and why your methodology comes first/is better.

Other notes on the K ---

- The aff is allowed to weigh the aff until I'm told otherwise. In other words, it is up for debate.

- FW debates are fun. It can link to the K

- Have fun with these debates and don't use too many buzz words


TLDR: lol.

Condo is good

floating PIKs are ok

vague alts are probs a voting issue

- all could be reasons to reject the teams until I'm told otherwise

- need to ask status of the off is condo is legitimate

- I will vote on theory if it is dropped/poorly handled

- I have a high threshold for voting on it

K affs

Yes. I ran a bunch of them. Yes, you can run them. I prefer an advocacy statement. I am fine with performance affs too.

Other affs --- sure.

more coming soon.


coming soon

Other things

- Please be nice to each other.

- swearing is ok, but excessive swearing and offensive behavior will result in low speaks

- "Line-by-line is extremely important in evaluating the rounds, especially on procedural flows.

- Clipping cards is cheating! If caught, you will lose the round and get the lowest possible speaker points the tournament allows.

Finally, don't change what works for you. I am willing to hear and vote on any type of argument, so don't alter your winning strat to fit what you may think my philosophy is." -

- Have fun in rounds, let loose, and good luck.

ARE YOU OK WITH THIS AFF? The answer to that question is more often than not yes. I can have my opinions on it, but I will vote on it if you do the better debating. Whether that is done for the resolution question is up for debate ;).

Robert Reilly Paradigm

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My name Is Robert Reilly

I look for a clear and substantiated case supported with evidence. I believe that most debates are won in the strength of your arguments and your detailed and specific rebuttal against your opponents arguments.

I don't like uneccesary quantifications. I also don't like unwarranted agressiveness or rude behavior in round. Debaters should win and lose with class. Thank you.

Charles Rennie Paradigm

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- Be respectful of our opponents.

- Please speak at a moderate pace. Do not speed read.

- Make your case and make it very clear to me.

- Pretend I know nothing about the topic and you must


- Clearly state your sources including the publication, author and date.

- Think of Crossfire as volleying back and forward with questions from one

team to another. You may ask a follow-up or for a clarification of an answer.

DO NOT make a speech ending with a rhetorical devise like, "isn't that true? or

"do you agree?"


- During the Summation and Final Focus speeches clearly state why you believe

your team is winning.

1. Talk about how & why your impacts are greater.

2. Tell me the contentions, evidence and impacts that you

believe you have blocked in your opponents case.

- Pretend that you are presenting to a Town Hall meeting with an audience of

50 to 100 citizens and you're trying to persuade them to follow and adopt

your side PRO or CON of the Resolve as the policy that they (the majority)

will vote for.

- Smile a lot, have fun, after the round is over even if it was super intense;

thank you opponents for being an excellent team that pushed you to be better.

Alexis Richardson Paradigm

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Jay Richardson Paradigm

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I've been competing all 4 years of high school in Public Forum. I mainly judge on use of impact, and unique/compelling arguments. Make sure to extend your arguments and to not drop anything throughout the round!

I generally don't vote based on who has more evidence, because I dislike the burden of evidence in PF - I won't vote against you for using analysis (as long as it makes sense).

I'll give bonus points for natural, topical jokes in speeches. I'll give a 30 if you say "notebook" to prove you read my paradigm. Also, please go through the debate in a slam poetry format.

Nate Ritsema Paradigm

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Elizabeth Ryan Paradigm

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Carrie Scicluna Paradigm

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Brooklyn Scott Paradigm

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Amara Siddiqui Paradigm

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Noah Smalley Paradigm

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Lacie Smith Paradigm

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About Me: I went to a small high school and took debate class for all four years. I participated in policy debate, but we often did not compete in co-curricular events. I also joined the CMU Debate team for a semester and participated in Lincoln Douglas debate. In 2007, I judged forensics for MIFA as a student teacher at Utica High School. It has been about 10 years, but I just started coaching and judging Public Forum debate for Utica High School.

Judging Criteria: Providing framework is important, along with clear road mapping throughout your speech. Repeat your framework throughout the speech and adhere to that in your final focus. I usually flow the entire debate and judge primarily off of the flow, but I also weigh persuasiveness, evidence, logic, and refutations. I pay close attention to "dropped" arguments, so I suggest that you and your partner flow as to refute their arguments. Clash is very important to me in a debate. Use all of your speaker time - I am looking for your speech to refute the other teams' arguments, then strengthen your teams' arguments with supplemental evidence. Clear communication is important. Make eye contact as frequent as possible, I also prefer a conversational style, opposed to jargon that a "lay" judge would not understand. I am judging based on the quality of your arguments made - not the quantity. Speakers should appear confident, with clear, logical relevant arguments and recent evidence.

I like confidence in a speaker, but I do not like cockiness or being mean while debating. This is supposed to be fun and educational, so I expect you to keep it classy. Do not look at each other during cross fire - you are trying to persuade me - not your opponent. Do not make statements during cross fire - save that for your summary or final focus. Ask meaningful questions during cross fire, as it can be a turning point for a debate. I am not going to judge a debate based on how "pretty" you speak, but I take your communication style along with case, evidence & arguments into consideration.

Joel Thursam Paradigm

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Nick Tolksdorf Paradigm

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-PF Debate for 4 years for Brother Rice (2010-2014)

-Extemporaneous Speaking: 5 years (3 years for Brother Rice, 2 years for the University of Michigan)

-Rhetorical Criticism: 1 year (University of Michigan)


-PF Debate (2015 – present) for Brother Rice


-Programmer in the defense industry (2018 - present)

I typically flow on paper with colored pens in a notebook so there will be a lot of pen clicking.

I judge based on what I hear in the round, but also making way overgeneralized arguments and statements makes me sad inside.

I weigh what I hear talked about more than I weigh stuff that gets dropped by both teams.


Asking to See the Evidence: Don’t use it to steal prep, have a good reason for doing so.

Signposting: Please. Make it easy for me to follow and flow your arguments and responses.

Speed: Talk as fast as you’d like.

Summary and Final Focus: They’re not rebuttals, please don’t ramble. Being clear and concise about why you are winning goes as long way to helping me flow the round.

Timing: You’re more than welcome to time yourself, but my phone’s timer is the authoritative one.

Alma Tozaj Paradigm

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Matt Walters Paradigm

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Phil Webb Paradigm

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Kevin Webber Paradigm

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Cianna Wszolek-Jordan Paradigm

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Dunia Zawideh Paradigm

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I care that students' points carry through to the end and they give sufficient evidence to support their claims. Anyway a student speaks is fine with me as long as they are clear and easy to understand. Respect each other and you will be fine.