The American Debate Association honors debaters, coaches and alumni of the debate community every year at the National Tournament.
All nominations should include the name and school affiliation of the person making the nomination and be sent to the ADA President. Nominations are accepted for the following awards:
Excellence in Coaching Award – This award is to recognize the excellent performance of a coach, whether a director, assistant or graduate assistant at an American Debate Association school. Nominations should include information on the coach, examples of excellent performance, whether through anecdotes or debate records.
2022 Adrienne Brovero, University of Mary Washington
2021 Fred Sternhagen, Concordia College
2020 Carly Wunderlich, Michigan State University
2019 Brian Delong, Indiana University
2018 David Cram Helwich, University of Minnesota
2017 Ken Strange, Wake Forest University
2016 Danielle O’Gorman, United States Naval Academy
2015 David Arnett, University of Kentucky
Founders Award for Service – This award is to recognize someone in the American Debate Association that goes above and beyond the requirements of their job – examples of potential recipients include outgoing president, retiring member of ADA, a coach who plays an active role in dealing with new programs, a grad student serving as treasurer, tab room staff, exceptional tournament hosts, etc. This award can also include alumni that are still active with the American Debate Association in some way. Nominations for this award should include the nominee’s name, debate history and your reasoning why they have gone above their job requirements, and their ADA school affiliation.
2022 Priten Shah, Classrooms.Cloud
2021 David Cram Helwich, University of Minnesota
2020 Joy Johnson, Julia Burke Foundation
2019 Danielle O’Gorman, United States Naval Academy
2018 Adrienne Brovero, University of Mary Washington
2017 Warren Decker, George Mason University
2016 Patrick Waldinger, University of Miami
2015 John Katsulas, Boston College
Distinguished Alumni Award – This award is designed to recognize a former member of the American Debate Association community that makes/made a significant contribution to society, their professional industry or a social movement. Nominations should the nominee’s name, debate history and their significant contribution.
2017 Matthew Sullivan
2016 Timothy O’Donnell
2015 Daveed Gartenstein-Ross
Outstanding New Director Award – This award, established in 2023, is given to a new Director who demonstrates outstanding achievement in scholarship, service, community building, or competitive success. The ideal candidate should be in their first seven years as a Director.