Roosevelt Captures State Speech Title, Strong Named Coach of the Year

The Roosevelt High School Speech team after capturing their first State title since 1983.

Roosevelt High School placed first in the 2012 All Iowa Speech Championships held at the University of Iowa. The state champions edged out runner-up Dowling Catholic and five-time champions Iowa City West, who placed third.

In addition, the Roosevelt debate team was runner-up in the All Iowa Finals Championship in Debate, placing second to West Des Moines Valley.

A special recognition also was given to Harry Strong, Roosevelt speech and debate coach, who was named Coach of the Year by the Iowa High School Forensic League member coaches. Strong was honored for rebuilding the Roosevelt program which nearly died in 2003. Today the program is considered one of the top Exemp programs in the U.S. and has been recognized by the National Forensic League as a “School of Excellence” in debate.

“This particular group of speech and debate students have consistently achieved at the highest possible levels all season long,” said Strong. “Their performance at All Iowa Finals in Iowa City fairly represents their character and abilities. This is a highly talented and dedicated group of students.”

Individual results from the All Iowa Speech and Debate Championships include:

Domestic Extemp Speaking

  • State Champion – Lilly Nellans, sophomore
  • State Runner-Up – Carolyn Evans, junior

Duo Interpretation

  • State Runner-Up – Elena Hildebrandt, freshman; and Jenna Pokorny, freshman
  • Fourth Place – Carolyn Evans, junior; and Becky Hall, senior

Original Oratory

  • State Runner-Up – Katy Roat, senior
  • Third Place – Lily Nellans, sophomore

Foreign Extemp Speaking

  • State Champion – Nathan Leys, junior
  • State Runner-Up – Becky Hall, senior
  • Third Place – Kayleigh Courard-Hauri, senior

 Congressional Debate

  • State Champion – Lily Nellans, sophomore
  • Third Place – Luke Theuma, sophomore

Public Forum Debate

  • State Runners-Up – Carolyn Evans, junior; and Becky Hall, senior
  • Semi-Finalists – Nathan Leys, junior; and Kayleigh Courard-Hauri, senior