DVC speech and debate team members

Six Diablo Valley College speech students won awards at the California Community College State Tournament in Fresno, capping a very successful spring term for the DVC speech and debate teams.

James Michaelson won a gold medal in the Lincoln-Douglas debate.

Bronze medals were won by:

  • Daniel Ong, Lincoln-Douglas debate;
  • James Michaelson and Tiger Hays-Lehay, parliamentary debate;
  • Cesyli Bruno and Dillon Pullos, parliamentary debate;
  • Dillon Pullos, extemporaneous speaking.

Three students also won awards at the Western States National Tournament held in Sacramento. Byron Cordoba and James Michaelson made it to the eighth round, and James Michaelson was the 11th place speaker.

At the UC Berkeley Invitational in Berkeley, James Michaelson and Byron Cordoba won first place in the novice policy debate, and James Michaelson won fourth place in novice speaker.

Results from the Las Positas Talk Hawk Invitational in Livermore:

  • Julie George took first place in open after dinner speaking, and third place in open persuasive speaking.
  • Natalie Meany and Alex Gillman took first place in novice duo.
  • Maryam Hassan earned fourth place in open after dinner speaking.
  • Tiger Hays-Lehay and Michael Murray placed fourth in open dramatic duo.
  • The DVC team took third place in the overall sweepstakes, community college division.

Results from the Northern California Forensics Association Spring Championships in Modesto:

  • Nicole Sandler took first place in novice drama.
  • Melissa Crissmon won second place in novice persuasive speaking.
  • James Michaelson was second place speaker, JV parliamentary debate .
  • James Michaelson and Tiger Hays-Lehay were semi-finalists in JV parliamentary debate.
  • Daniel Ong took eighth place speaker, JV parliamentary debate.
  • Daniel Ong and Michael Murray were quarter-finalists in JV parliamentary debate.
  • Cesyli Bruno earned a finalist spot in open persuasive speaking.
  • Natalie Meany was a finalist in both novice prose and novice informative.
  • Lelah Smick was a finalist in novice informative.

At the Spring Fling at Ohlone College, awards went to:

  • Nick Campbell - first place in after dinner speaking
  • Rica Douglas - first place in informative speaking, finalist in persuasion
  • Devin Ramsey - third place in after dinner speaking
  • Steven Bolin - second place in poetry
  • Jamie Harder-Cattell and Johnny Odell - seventh place in debate team
  • Jamie Harder-Cattell - eighth place speaker in debate, finalist in impromptu speaking
  • Johnny Odell - ninth place speaker in debate
  • Patrick Devlin - finalist in impromptu speaking, finalist in programmed oral interpretation
  • Eric de la Cruz - finalist in impromptu speaking, finalist in persuasion

Fifty DVC students from both the Pleasant Hill and San Ramon campuses competed at inter-collegiate tournaments this spring, and the top speakers spoke at the annual Speech Night in April. The final event of the season was an intramural competition, where students from public speaking competed against each other and members of the speech team served as judges.

“We are very proud of our students and their accomplishments,” said Dr. Becky Opsata, DVC speech professor. “Our team touched more than 450 DVC students this spring. Our thanks goes to coaches Patrick Moe, John Hanecak, and Shannon Padilla, too, for their work and travel with the students.”