SpeakFirst Juniors Place 2nd in Field of 48 Teams and Advance to National Championships

On March 3rd and 4th, 2017, SpeakFirst Juniors Brooklin Ballard and Shae Thomas competed in a field of 48 teams in the Deep South District Tournament in Montgomery. The Deep South District Tournament is the most competitive Alabama tournament of the year.  Only the top four teams earn an invitation to Nationals.
Over the course of two days, Brooklin and Shae competed in seven rounds of debate against teams from across the region, achieving a record of 6 wins and 1 loss. Through their hard work, Brooklin and Shae placed second overall and earned a spot in the National Tournament! For the second time in our team's thirteen year history, SpeakFirst will be competing in the National Tournament.
Brooklin and Shae are Juniors at Ramsay High School and have been SpeakFirst debaters since they were in eighth grade. The National Tournament will be held in Birmingham this June.

Senior SpeakFirst Debater Wins National Speech and Debate Association's Exemplary Student Service Award

Delanya Storey, a senior at Jefferson County International Baccalaureate School, has won the National Speech and Debate Association's Exemplary Student Service Award. Delanya was one of six nominees for this  inaugural national award. Other nominees were from Colorado, Kansas, North Carolina, Oregon, and Virginia.

Delanya used the skills that she has learned through SpeakFirst while working with Birmingham AIDS Outreach. As a youth volunteer, she was certified to administer the OraQuick HIV test and used her debate skills to speak on behalf of and advocate for the organization.

Impact America, an AmeriCorps Program, is housed and supported by the Center for Ethics & Social Responsibility at The University of Alabama. Additional office space is provided by UAB and Maynard, Cooper & Gale, PC.