First National Speech Champ


Michael Everett '16 (left) and Jeremy Marsh '15 with their first-place trophies for Parliamentary Debate at the Southern California Urban Debate League college invitational tournament at Cal State Fullerton Oct. 18. Photo by Mrs. Michelle Marsh, Jeremy's mom.

Michael Everett ’15  and Jeremy Marsh ’16 with their first-place trophies for Parliamentary Debate at the Southern California Urban Debate League college invitational tournament at Cal State Fullerton. This is CSDS’ best Parli  win ever. They debated a resolution stating that the president of the United States should have sole power to declare war. Oct. 18 photo by Mrs. Michelle Marsh, Jeremy’s mom.

Michael Everett '15

Michael Everett ’15 holds his first-place impromptu speaking trophy, along with a winner’s sunflower, the Kansas state flower, and a flower lei for reaching the final round. Photo provided June 25 by CSDS head coach Bobby Lebeda.

By Talon Contributor Head Coach Bobby Lebeda, ‘Nade Speech & Debate Society

Michael Everett ’15 became Chaminade’s first-ever national champion speech maker, picking up first place against 450 competitors June 19 in Overland, Kan., in the category of impromptu speaking. About 7,000 students from across the United States competed in the finals tournament.

UPDATE Oct. 19 – Parliamentary Debate partners Michael Everett ’15 and Jeremy Marsh ’16 took first place in Fullerton, Calif., at the annual Southern California Urban Debate League state college invitational at Cal State Fullerton. In addition, Michael placed as the third best speaker in Parliamentary debate.

“It’s rare for a school to have someone in the national finals,” Chaminade Speech & Debate Society head coach and Cal State Northridge student Bobby Lebeda told The Talon in an email. “We had three. I’m just ecstatic.”

In addition to Michael, Ryan Town ’16 and Ashlee Macalino ’15 also qualified to compete at the National Speech & Debate Association finals alongside Michael.

Read about their journey in a story by The Chaminade Talon.

Ryan, in his main event of humorous interpretation, outperformed a more experienced finalist in a match and ended in the top 100, an almost unheard-of feat for a sophomore. Ashlee, who qualified for the national championships in dramatic interpretation, was unable to attend as a first alternate, according to Mr. Lebeda.

National champion Michael Everett '15 with Chaminade Speech & Debate Society head coach Bobby Lebeda in Overland, Kan. Photo provided June 25 by Mr. Lebeda.

Nade’s first-ever U.S. champion speech maker Michael Everett ’15 with Chaminade Speech & Debate Society head coach Bobby Lebeda at the National Speech & Debate Association tournament in Kansas. Photo provided June 25 by Mr. Lebeda.

“Michael is one of the hardest working members on our team and he absolutely deserves this,” the head coach said.

The impromptu event is one in which a competitor receives his/her topic during the round and is given just a few minutes to compose a speech on that topic and deliver it on the spot.

The national champion CSDS member attended summer forensic institutes at Bradley University in Illinois to hone his craft of public speaking and sophisticated performance.

His wins on the state and regional level include finishing seventh in the California High School Speech Association’s championship tournament in Modesto, Calif., in April in dramatic interpretation with his speech “Diogenes the Dog,” about a dying man’s journey to the truth. To qualify for the national championship, Michael took second place with “Diogenes” at the regional championship tournament in March in Fullerton, Calif., said Coach Lebeda.

Micheal Everett’s accomplishments occurred in a tough year for CSDS members who lost their beloved forensics director, Mrs. Marianne Rosen, in the spring 2014 semester due to an emergency leave. Mrs. Rosen has now retired.