Central Valley · Education

Orosi High School teacher honored by National Speech and Debate Association

The National Speech & Debate Association is proud to announce the most recent winners of the Diamond Coach Award. Thirty-three speech and debate coaches have earned this prestigious award in the National Speech & Debate Association’s Honor Society. Because of these coaches, thousands of students have access to the life changing benefits of speech and debate.

The National Speech & Debate Association’s Honor Society has been recognizing student and coach achievements in speech and debate since 1925. The prestigious diamond award recognizes a professional career that combines excellence and longevity in speech and debate.

Congratulations to the following outstanding coaches:

Sixth Diamond

Catherine Smith, Olathe South High School – Olathe, Kansas

Fourth Diamond

Eric Simione, Boardman High School – Youngstown, Ohio

Third Diamond

Karson B. Kalashian, Orosi High School – Orosi, California

Adam Jenkins, Belleville West High School – Belleville, Illinois

Jo Ball, Olathe South High School – Olathe, Kansas

Nicholas Owen, Salina High Central – Salina, Kansas

Robert Croteau, Catholic Memorial School – West Roxbury, Massachusetts

Joseph Vaughan, Edgemont High School and Scarsdale High School – Scarsdale, New York

Yvonne Kalka, Grand Forks Central High School – Grand Forks, North Dakota

Michael Stovern, Mead High School – Spokane, Washington

Matthew Prevedel, Cheyenne East High School – Cheyenne, Wyoming

Second Diamond

Donna L. Yeager, Auburn High School – Auburn, Alabama

Terry L. Colvin, Arroyo High School – El Monte, California

Robert Sheard, NSU University School – Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Gail Scoville, Carbon High School – Price, Utah

First Diamond

Scott W. Woods, BASIS Scottsdale High School – Scottsdale, Arizona

Diane Wagener, Battle Mountain High School – Edwards, Colorado

Jon Williamson, Charles W. Flanagan High School – Pembroke Pines, Florida

Matthew Scott Bartula, Sequoyah High School – Canton, Georgia

Geoff Epperson, Carl Sandburg High School – Orland Park, Illinois

Randall Baldwin, Topeka High School – Topeka, Kansas

Amy M. Zuccaro, Trinity High School – Louisville, Kentucky

Kim Jerai, Hawley Public Schools – Hawley, Minnesota

Julie McMerty, Orono High School – Long Lake, Minnesota

Rachel Clapper, Madison Central High School – Madison, Mississippi

Jharick Shields, St. Andrew’s Episcopal School – Ridgeland, Mississippi

Renee Szporn, Princeton High School – Princeton, New Jersey

Duval Bodden, Stuyvesant High School – New York City, New York

John Kerezy, Revere High School – Richfield, Ohio

Pete Martin, Riverside High School – Greer, South Carolina

Sandra M. Peek, West Hardin High School – Saratoga, Texas

Malyssa Gabrielson, Sheboygan South High School – Sheboygan, Wisconsin

Matthew Prost, Luther Preparatory School – Watertown, Wisconsin

Coaches earn distinction in the national honorary through team participation, student achievement, public service, and leadership work. To earn a diamond award, a coach must be a member of the National Speech & Debate Association for at least five years. Coaches earn additional diamond levels the more points they receive in the Honor Society. A coach who attains 1,500 points is awarded a first diamond; they receive a second diamond for 3,000 points, a third for 6,000 points, and so on. Five years must pass between each diamond award.

These coaches will be recognized at the world’s largest academic competition, the National Speech & Debate Tournament, in Birmingham Alabama this June. More than 7,000 students, coaches, and parents from across the nation attend the National Tournament every year.

About the National Speech & Debate Association

The National Speech & Debate Association is the largest interscholastic speech and debate organization serving middle school, high school, and collegiate students in the United States. The Association provides competitive speech and debate activities, high-quality resources, comprehensive training, scholarship opportunities, and advanced recognition to more than 150,000 students and coaches every year.

For 90 years, the National Speech & Debate Association has empowered more than 1.5 million members to become engaged citizens, skilled professionals, and honorable leaders in our society. For more information, visit www.speechanddebate.org.



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