Judge Philosophies

Adam Navarro -- Palomar College


Andrea Sanchez -- San Diego State University

� � Hello! My name is Andrea, and I am a former debater of SDSU and Palomar College. As a tl;dr:

Tell me how to evaluate arguments. Please let me know how I can help to make the round a safe and accessible space. Give a clear link/impact scenario; why is your â??nuke warâ?? scenario actually going to happen? What does this mean in the scope of the debate? Speed is fine, but be clear. Iâ??m not too fond of econ debates, so guide me through it friends! Kritiks and procedurals are great, but I also like traditional case/policy debates. Iâ??ll listen to just about anything � as long as itâ??s not ableist, racist, sexist, queerphobic, etc. If you disregard this and are very toxic in round, it will reflect in your speaker points. Perms can be advocacies if you tell me they are. I donâ??t believe DAâ??s (especially tics DAâ??s) can be permed. In essence; be organized, tell me where youâ??re winning, and compare impacts.

  • Speed: Iâ??m okay with speed, but clarity is of high importance. Itâ??s not worth potentially making a lot of arguments if your opponents or I are saying â??clearâ?? or â??speedâ?? every 30 seconds (which would likely affect your speaker points). Volume and clarity can also help make the round more accessible (in more than one regard).

  • Procedurals: Theyâ??re great! A debate about framing and the words we use can be very persuasive depending on the impacts you choose to derive from it (c/kritical args can be very fun to make in rounds with procedurals/theory). Make sure you tell me how to evaluate this position; just because you say â??A Prioriâ?? doesnâ??t mean I will prioritize the argument; why is it important for articulated or potential abuse? Explain why I should fault to competing interps (if you choose to make that arg). Repeat your interps.

  • Framework: Iâ??m down for a framework debate. If a counter framework is presented, the other side should address it. If there are two frameworks floating around and nobody tells me how they interact or frame the impacts, I will be very annoyed (it will mean that I have to do some of that work at the end of the round, and nobody wants that).

  • Kritiks: Kritik debates can be very fun! Donâ??t be afraid to test out a weird or new K in front of me. Affirmative kritiks arenâ??t unwelcome; please explain your reasoning for rejecting the topic, or using the K as a method for discussing the resolution. Performance args are fine. I expect the other team to ask, though, if the performance is the method/ advocacy. Alts (just like CPâ??s) are permmable if done correctly.

CPâ??s: Please say why your CP is mutually exclusive. PICs are not so fun/not the most competitive counter plans you could be running.

Andy Kyle -- Point Loma Nazarene University

Angelica Grigsby -- Maricopa Speech and Debate

Benjamin Lange -- Concordia University Irvine

TL;DR: Do what you want, but I have a high threshold for theoretical defenses in favor of rejecting the topic (although I'm very in favor of creative ways to endorse the topic), and I tend to hold proximal impact framing/proximal solvency mechanisms to a pretty high standard as well. 

While I'm open to arguments about debate being a "training ground" for personal advocacy and political change, I view debate itself as a game. This means that I view arguments very impersonally, and I care more for the strategic aspect of the game than the emotional or truth-based appeals. Those things are obviously still important, but that just means I will very likely vote for arguments that are "winning" even if I don't necessarily like them (just because of how I understand the utility of debate). For impact weighing, I probably default to magnitude>probability>timeframe unless told otherwise, so do in-depth impact comparison that includes weighing of the different metrics. I tend to hold proximal impact framing and solvency mechanisms to a pretty high standard, and while I'm down to vote on proximity you should just keep in mind that I think of all of these arguments as pieces to a game, so I'm not more persuaded by proximal impacts than magnitude-based impacts absent a clear reason.

I'm fine if you want to reject the topic on the Aff, but I'll be very sympathetic to the Neg's theoretical objection to that. You can win the theory debate, but I'll have a pretty high threshold for your theory answers so just be aware of that. Impact turning theory out of the aff is fine as well, but I've found that if the Neg team wins that you shouldn't get to leverage the Aff against theory if truth-testing the aff is impossible, I'll usually evaluate the theory prior to the PMCs reasons that fairness and education are bad or impossible to access. I'm pretty indifferent about conditionality also, but will vote on theory saying it shouldn't be allowed if you win that sheet.

Also on theory, this has only mattered a couple of times, but if I'm not given a paradigm by either team I have a tendency to default to reasonability instead of competing interpretations. This is largely because (absent being told otherwise/as a default) I tend to evaluate theory as a check against abuse (i.e., should I penalize a team for doing something unfair), rather than evaluating it as the endorsement of the "ideal model" of debate, which tends to make a difference regarding how I evaluate the impact framing on the theory, but this has only ever mattered when neither team makes any of the arguments that would give me a cohesive story on theory and I'm left pretty much evaluating a non-functional/unclear interp with no voters.

I love policy debate, but I was also super into reading Ks and I dig janky stuff from obscure philosophical sources. In my opinion, I'm able to understand and follow pretty much whatever you want to throw at your opponent. On the flip-side though, that also means that you probably won't get very far with super ambiguous solvency. You need to have some kind of solvency that is (at the very least) a clearly explained mechanism that is preferably drawn from the literature that the K is based on. As a Neg, I think your best bet is to read a diverse strategy, but if you have a baller K that you want to go all in on then go for it.

Finally, and I've realized that this is probably a very important thing to make clear, I am willing to vote on terminal defense if you are able to explain what it means for the round. That means that if you win the "we meet" on theory, then the rest of the sheet is irrelevant - even under a paradigm of competing interpretations, their rule is irrelevant if you followed it.

If you have any other questions, feel free to ask me in person! Good luck :)

Brandan Whearty -- Palomar College


Brody Stejskal -- Pepperdine University


Caitlyn Burford -- Northern Arizona University

Burford, Caitlyn (Northern Arizona University)

She/her are my pronouns.

Update: K's with bomb links are my love language.  K's with horrible links make me want to cry.

Update #2: I like learning new things.  If I can learn something new about how the world works after leaving a debate I am stooooooooked!



This is my ninth year judging and coaching debate, and I spent four years competing in college. Please feel free to ask me specific questions before the round.


Specific Inquiries



1.         General Overview 

I think debate is a unique competitive forum to discuss issues within our rhetoric about the state, power, race, gender, etc. in a space that allows us to rethink and critically assess topics.  This can come through a net benefit analysis of a proposed government plan, through a micro political action or statement, through a critique, or through some other newfangled performance you come up with.  In that sense, I think debate is a rhetorical act that can be used creatively and effectively. Running a policy case about passing a piece of legislation has just as many implications about state power and authority as a critique of the state.  The differences between the two types just have to do with what the debaters choose to discuss in each particular round. There are critical implications to every speech act.  Affirmative cases, topicalities, procedurals, kritiks, and performances can all be critically analyzed if the teams take the debate there.  Thus, framework is imperative.  I’ll get there shortly.  You can run whatever you want as long as a) you have a theoretical justification for running the position, and b) you realize that it is still a competitive debate round so I need a reason to vote for something at some point.  (a.k.a Give me a framework with your poetry!). 


2.        Framework 

This often ends up as the most important part of a lot of debates. If both teams are running with net benefits, great, but I still think there is area to weigh those arguments differently based on timeframe, magnitude, structural weight, etc.  This kind of framework can make your rebuttal a breeze.  In a debate that goes beyond a net benefits paradigm, your framework is key to how I interpret different impacts in the round.  Choose your frameworks strategically and use them to your advantage.  If the whole point of your framework is to ignore the case debate, then ignore the case debate.  If the whole point of your framework is to leverage your case against the critique, then tell me what the rhetorical implications (different than impacts) are to your case.


3.         Theory

            It’s important to note that theory positions are impact debates, too.  Procedural positions, topicalities, etc. are only important to the debate if you have impacts built into them.  If a topicality is just about “fairness” or “abuse” without any articulation as to what that does, most of these debates become a “wash”.  So, view your theory as a mini-debate, with a framework, argument, and impacts built into it.


4.         Counterplan Debate

            This is your game. I don’t think I have a concrete position as to how I feel about PICS, or intrinsicness, or textual/functional competition.  That is for you to set up and decide in the debate.   I have voted on PICS good, PICS bad, so on and so forth. That means that it all has to do with the context of the specific debate. Just make your arguments and warrant them well.  Unless I am told otherwise, I will assume the CP is unconditional and my role as a judge it to vote for the best advocacy.


5.         Round Evaluation

            Again, framework is important.  Procedurals, case debate, and critique debate should all have frameworks that prioritize what I look at in the round. In the rare case that neither team does any framing on any of the arguments, I will typically look at the critique, then topicality/procedurals, then the case. Because the critique usually has to do with some sort of education affecting everyone in the room, it will usually come before a procedural that affects the “fairness” of one team. (Again, this is only absent any sort of weighing mechanism for any of the arguments.)  If there is a topicality/procedural run without any voters, I won’t put them in for you and it will be weighed against the case.  I will not weigh the case against the critique unless I am told how and why it can be weighed equally.  

            A concrete argument is always going to have a bit more weight than an abstract argument.  A clear story with a calculated impact will probably outweigh an uncalculated potential impact.  (i.e. “15,000 without food” vs. a “decrease in the quality of life”). But, if you calculate them out and do the work for me, awesome.  If I have to weigh two vague abstract arguments against each other, i.e. loss of identity vs. loss of freedom, then I will probably revert to the more warranted link story.


6.         Speed, Answering Questions, and Other General Performance Things

            I’m fine with speed.  Don’t use it as a tool to exclude your other competitors if they ask you to slow down, please do.  It’s your round!  Do what you want!

Camryn Gordon -- Pepperdine University


Christian Nunez -- University of La Verne


Cory Nims -- Grand Canyon University

I competed in policy in high school and parli in college but have been out of the community for a little while now. Iâ??m open to critical debate but donâ??t assume I know your literature, while Iâ??ve got a reasonable understanding of most, I havenâ??t kept up as much in recent years.  Ultimately this is your debate and I will do my best to keep personal opinions out as much as possible, to that end I will usually end up voting based on terminalized impacts, impact calculus, and a clear narrative. The most successful teams are usually the ones who write my ballot for me at the end of the round.  Iâ??m usually fine with speed as long as you are clear and considerate. Letâ??s have some fun :) 

Daniel Zaragoza -- Point Loma Nazarene University


Daniela Vasquez -- Azusa Pacific University


Darron DeVillez -- Grossmont College


David Trevithick -- Colorado College

Dewi Hokett -- Palomar College


Dora Varner -- University of La Verne


Elle Baez -- Point Loma Nazarene University

Erika Portillo -- EPCC


Esilanna McMenamin -- University of La Verne


Fernanda De La O -- Azusa Pacific University


Giselle Jahangiri -- Concordia University Irvine

Grant Tovmasian -- Rio Hondo Community College

The most important criteria for me is fairness. I will avoid interceding on any one's behalf up to a point.  Please remember that although I approach the round as impartial as I can, that does not negate the truth, I still am aware which country I live in and who is the president and killing puppies is wrong (also kicking them, and just violence in general, I frown upon)

I expect all debaters to remain cordial and professional throughout the round. The decorum is important so as not to isolate or offend any student. Debate albeit adversarial in nature should be based on arguments and not a personal attack and as such, each student should perceive this as a safe place to express ideas and arguments. I prefer good on case argumentation over near useless procedural that are simply run in order to avoid on case thorough analysis. As such I am a believer that presentation and sound argumentation is critical towards establishing one's position. DA vs Advantages. CP vs Plan are all sound strategies and I hope students will use them.Ã? Ã? If you are running a CP please make sure to explain its status, especially if you are to claim dispositional (EXPLAIN) If permutation can happen in the real world it can happen in a debate round. Please call Points of Order and 95% of the time I will respond with (point well taken, point not well taken) That aside, I am open to any line of argumentation as long as it is complete. Example: I will not do your work for you, no link no argument, no impact no argument, no warrant NO ARGUMENT PERIOD.

I firmly believe that speed kills, as such the first team that uses it as an offensive or defensive tactic will get a loss in that round. Critics, i.e. K are to be run only when one or the other side believes that it is more important than whatever else is happening and is directly connected to either the actions of the other team or resolution in it of itself. As such, they should be willing to commit to it wholeheartedly and most important at the top of everything. For example, if you truly believe that the other team is promoting cultural genocide, seriously do not speak to me about agricultural benefits or disadvantages of the plan first, because then I think you cheapen both the critique and your whole line of argumentation.

I want to hear fun, constructive and polite debates. 

Have fun and let the best team win. (I always prefer cordial and educational rounds with elements of quick wit and persuasive argumentation over Nuclear Holocaust, which I really do not care for, especially when it results because of US not buying used car parts from Uruguay.)

Greg Gorham -- Grand Canyon University

Hannah Reyes -- University of La Verne


Helen Ruiz -- University of Southern California


Helena Ong -- Claremont Colleges


James Deiotte -- University of California San Diego


Jennifer McGee -- Concordia University Irvine

Jimmy Gomez -- Orange Coast College

Joe Sindicich -- California State University Fullerton


John Woo -- University of Southern California


Jonathan Veal -- Point Loma Nazarene University

Hello friends,

I have been coaching college parli since 2016 and competed in the activity previously.

Case debate/Policy: I really enjoy case debate. I am particularly persuaded by positions that interact with the uniqueness of the topic. DAâ??s that are bottom heavy or generic can work but are vulnerable to MG non-unique and link arguments.

Theory: I default to competing interpretations. I tend to hold MG theory to a relatively high threshold due to lack of backside rebuttals, but see it as a check against particularly abusive neg strategies. I will go either way on condo depending on the argumentation in the round, but I tend to vote aff on delay/consult theory and when the neg reads multiple advocacies.

Critical Debate: Love it. Aff Kâ??s need to either interact with the topic or present strong reasons for not doing so. I really like to see topic oriented-debate if possible. Accessibility is key, so I will not fill in the blanks on K authors even if I am familiar with them. Explain your Thesis/Solvency in a way that can be understood by the other team. Links of omission/generic links tend to be iffy for me. Show clear links.

Speed: I will listen to speed procedurals if the other team does not respond to clears and the team reading the position is clearly losing access to participating in the round. Speed is both strategic and lacks a bright line, but that is not an excuse to push people out of debate. 

Feel free to ask me any questions before the round.

Some side notes

- Be cool to your opponents. Seriously, I consider this important enough to influence my decision in extreme instances.

- Provide a plan/CP/interp/perm text if asked. Perms with clear texts are preferred.

- Read trigger warnings if you are in doubt.

Joseph Laughon -- Concordia University Irvine

Debated for five years, 2 for Moorpark College and 3 for CUI. I did ok. I am now the assistant director of debate at Concordia University.

�??�?� I am a fairly straight up critic. A few points though; �??�?� 

- The K �??�?�  Despite my reputation while competing as being one of the most boring white men alive, I do not discourage it and towards the end, Will and I ran it fairly often. I am familiar with most generic kritiks (cap, whiteness, militarism, Virilio, borders, coercion, the gift, etc...) and have no problem voting on it. However my threshhold for defense on the k is likely lower than most judges, though not extremely so. You can't win on defense as much as I might sympathize with your struggle to do so. For me the vast majority of frameworks are poorly written and debates exclusively about poorly written frameworks are fairly boring. Debates on the alt solvency/alt offense/perm solvency/perm NBs are far more interesting and will help you win more often. That being said I've become more of a fan of well done framework debate. �??�?�  Please be relevant. I don't mind a generic cap k for some godawful debate about the minutiae of financial regulation or something. But try to make it slightly connected to the topic beyond, "You reify the state by using the USFG as an actor. Next off, 8 minutes of state bad." Also understand I do not spend even 1/25th the time you have spent reading the literature for your K (unless its cap or coercion). Be gentle with it. Name dropping a bunch of authors/authoresses isn't going to be persuasive because I will not have read them as deeply as you have. �??�?�  On a side note I see debate largely as a game we do largely for fun with the side benefits of being smarter/well rounded. I do not see it primarily as a catalyst for revolutionary social change or really any kind of "community. I'll vote on whatever wins you the game but please don't assume I am "down" because unless it's the restoration of monarchy, then odds are no. �??�?�  -Theory �??�?�  Hated as a competitor, like it a lot as a judge. Down with T but your counter interp probably needs to actually respond to the interp. Counter interps like "We must only be held to the resolution" isn't counter to anything much less their interp. �??�?�  �??�?�  �??�?�  �??�?� 

-DAs. �??�?�  Obviously I'm a fan. I'm a huge fan of good uniqueness debates. Bad uniqueness debates (oh here's 5 reasons why the econ is up, naw dawg here's 6 reasons why its down. 6> 5 duh.) make me sad. Personally how I decide on this will go a long way in how I decide the direction of the DA and its likelihood since it is a debate on what world the plan takes part in to begin with.�??�?�  �??�?�  Major points: Internal link/impact defense. Does not happen enough. Please do that. The amount of times good team just spot the other side the notion that a nuclear bomb will cause extinction is so high it's absurd. �??�?� 

- Counter plans/perm debate.
�??�?�  Competition is good. Personally I prefer NB competition as I think its the most educational. Mutual exclusivity is usually just a form of NB competition though I am open to arguments as to why it is not. Do better than the same 3 generic perm blocks. How many times must we hear "Butler says..." in the perm debate? �??�?�  Impact Calc: �??�?�  If no one tells me how to judge straight up impact debates then I revert to magnitude and probability. So if you just tell me your impact is bigger and they tell me that theirs is more probable, I will probably revert to the bigger magnitude impact (especially if its extinction vs. some one feels bad about themselves). Give me reasons why prob > mag or vice versa. I do enjoy good defense debate on the probability level. Time frame isn't brought up enough. �??�?�  I'm also a big fan of the "Big mag impacts bad v. Big mag impacts good" debate. But if it doesn't happen, unfortunately I'm a hack for the mag x prob (extinction x .000001 still pretty big risk) impact calc. �??�?�  Not totally against "key to value to life" args if they are decent internal links into what gives human life value. But baseless claims of, "And now there's no value to life!" claims are pretty easily beaten in front of me. �??�?� 

-House keeping �??�?� 

>Speed: Don't care one way or another. I will clear you if I can't understand. I can hang, though slightly less than when I was competing since my ego isn't in the round anymore. If your advocacy is long as hell please repeat it.

>POOs: Call them. I can't guarantee me catching them cheating every time. So unless you want me letting it slide and someone throws a fit, call it. But if you're some senior team on the national circuit pummeling some freshman babies from a CC and you really feel the need to POO this poor child's PMR, you should feel bad.

>I'm not a point fairy.

Joseph Evans -- El Camino College

  About me:I have been involved in forensics for over 13 years including 7 years of coaching. I have debated in High School, College and I am now currently a full-time professor and Director of Debate at El Camino College. I view debate as a game of argument and impact prioritization. Thus, I believe that any method of debate is viable when used as a strategic ploy to win. I will try to list my views on the major themes within debate. Please feel free to ask me for clarification before the round!.   

Framework/Role of the Ballot:  I will evaluate and weigh the round through any framework that the Aff or Neg presents to me. I have no predisposition towards one specific FW because all frameworks can either be strategic or not depending on how itâ??s debated. In terms of evaluating competing FWs, I will only make my decision on how each are warranted and impacted out in round and will never insert my own beliefs. In terms of the ROB, I will weigh the ROB through the FW presented and if itâ??s not contested, this will frame how I evaluate the rest of the round.  If no one tells me how to frame the round, I tend to fall back to evaluating the round through the lens of utilitarianism (net benefits). When impacting out why you win a policy debate, please frame your impacts through lenses like timeframe, magnitude, probability, reversibility. 

TLDR: Framework is important! You win the framework if you provide me clear warranted arguments for your position, and impact out why your framework is best.        

Theory: I will evaluate theoretical positions the same as others. The interpretation will frame how I evaluate the position. You must have a clear description of how the debate round should have been constructed. Additionally, I will evaluate the interp/counter-interp debate based on the standards/impacts presented.  I donâ??t have any preference in regards reasonability vs. competing interps you must justify why I should frame theory through either. If a teams decides to kick out of the position, I usually don't hold it against them (unless there is conceded offense). 

Counter Plans/Alts/Perms: I view counterplans or alternatives as a test of competition against the affirmativeâ??s advocacy. I believe that counterplans/alts can compete based on impact prioritization, functional competition, or (sigh) textual competitiveness. I have no predisposition towards one type of competition. Teams must justify why I should vote on the competitiveness or lack of in the CP or Alt debate. In terms of the perm debate, perms also tests of the competitiveness of the counter advocacy. In order to win the perm debate you need to justify and impact out why it outweighs the CP or alt. I am also open to theoretical reasons why the CP/ALT or Perm should be rejected in the round. 

Speed: Go as fast as you want but please be clear! I have judged NPTE/NPDA finals and/or semi-finals the last 3 of 4 years so I will be able to keep up. However, if you are unclear, I will give you non-verbals or yell â??clearâ?. My priority is getting everything you say on my flow so sacrificing clarity for speed is not advisable. Additionally, I have voted on speed arguments a few times when teams use speed as a bullying or ableist technique. So be conscious of how you use speed within the round. If you can beat a team without going fast, itâ??s a win-win for both teams. You get the W and the other team has an educational/ teaching moment.  

Kritical Arguments: I believe that any augment that is present is a viable way to win. Kritical arguments fall into that category. I am well versed in most critical arguments, but I am not by any means an expert on critical theory. Therefore, if you are running something new or obscure, donâ??t assume I understand the literature.  Regardless of the K, I will listen how your frame, impact and weight the FW and Alt/Alt solvency. Additionally, 

Josh Vannoy -- Grand Canyon University

Joshua Vannoy - Grand Canyon University

Experience: 4 years of NPDA Debate at Concordia University Irvine. 4 years of coaching at GCU, one as ADOD and three as DOD. I competed at the NPTE and NPDA all four years of college. Kevin Calderwood, Bear Saulet, and Amanda Ozaki-Laughon have all been large influences in my debate career.


Debate is a game. There are arguments I personally will lean towards, but ultimately you should make the argument you want to make. 

- One question should be answered during each constructive. (Flex can make this semi-optional)

- Partner to partner communication is cool, but if you (the speaker) don't say the words I won't flow it. 

- Be friendly


Theory ran properly can win my ballot. I would avoid V/A/E/F specs/specs in general, unless the abuse is really clear. All interps should be read slowly twice, or I won't be able to flow it. I do not need articulated abuse. Competing interps is my go unless you have something else. I most likely will not vote for you must disclose arguments.


If your PMC lacks warrants/impacts the ballot should be pretty easy for the Neg. If the entire PMC is dropped, it should be a pretty easy ballot for the Aff. I will not do work for any impacts, if you just say "poverty" without terminalizing the impact, I will not terminalize it for you.


So I personally enjoyed performative debate, it was fresh and interesting. If you decide to have a performance argument/framework you need a justification and a true performance. If you say performance is key in the FW and then do not "perform" anywhere else then there may be an issue. I will need performance specific Solvency/Impacts if you take this route. In your performance never do harm to yourself or another competitor.

The K:

All K's should have a FW, Thesis, Links, Impacts and an Alt with Solvency arguments. If one of these pieces is missing it is going to be difficult for me to evaluate the criticism. Sometimes people skip the thesis, that is ok so long as you describe the thesis somewhere else in the K (Earlier the better). The closer your K is to the topic the easier it is for me to vote for it. Reject alts are ok, but I find ivory tower arguments to be very compelling in these debates. I ran Mark/Symbolism the most but am open to any other type of K. I probably have not read your author so please be very clear on what the Thesis of your argument is; name-dropping means nothing to me unless you explain the idea.

Non-topical Affirmatives:

After four years of seeing many non-topical debates as a judge, I have become more open to hearing them without much justification needed to reject the topic. With that being said I am still compelled and convinced by FW if ran effectively on the negative.

CP Theory:

Is condo bad? Probably? Having debated under Kevin Calderwood for three years this one of the arguments that stuck with me. If a condo bad shell is run properly and executed well I will probably vote for it. Although I am open to a conditional advocacy (that means one) if you can justify it in responding to condo bad arguments (Multiple conflicting advocacies make it really easy for the aff to win the condo debate).

Never run delay.

50/States/Consult/Courts need a DA/Net Ben/Justification for doing so.

Pics are awesome if done well (Does not mean PICS bad is also not a good argument), and please read all CP texts (Just like All Alt/Plan texts) slowly twice. If you do not provide a written copy for me and I do not hear it well enough to write it down then what I wrote will be what I work with.


I am not a fan of the multiple perm trend, 1-2 perms should be enough, I am open to Neg multi perm theory arguments when teams run 3-8 perms. If your perm does not solve links to the DA's/Offense it would probably be better to just respond to those arguments instead of making a perm, considering a perm is just a test of competition.

Speaker Points:

I have found that I have a pretty routine pattern of speaker points; I generally give out 26 -29.5 depending on how well the debaters perform. With the 26-27 range being debates that usually are more learning experiences for the debaters, while the 28-29 range is usually for the debaters who do not have as much technical work and have very competitive performances. Jokes and making debate fun is always a safe way to get higher speaks in general. I also have found that the more hyper-masculine an individuals performance is, especially directed towards the other team, the lower my speaker points go for that individual.

Josh House -- Cypress College

Julia Shotwell -- Point Loma Nazarene University

Debate however makes you comfortable, but don't sacrifice clarity because I still need to follow along, and also don't forget to tell me how to evaluate the round. I really value the rebuttals to analyze the important arguments and voting points in the debate. Don't be rude to me or your opponents, because that makes debate uncomfortable for everyone.

I'm fine with critical arguments and theory, but I need you to still explain yourself so I don't do work for you. The way you interact with your opponents' arguments and apply offense throughout the debate is probably something I'll pay attention to. Read 'important' arguments twice/clearly: plan texts, interps, etc. I'll call speed if I need to I guess. I have experience debating parli for four years and now I'm coaching at PLNU. 

Kara Sutton -- San Diego State University

Hi all,

I have competed in forensics in both policy and parli. I will vote for anything but you have to tell me how to. Articulate clear framing of the round and have analysis and weighing between impacts of neg and aff is the clearest path to a ballot. I am inclined to vote on the flow regardless of how weird argument. and I appreciate organized response orders.  your link/impact scenarios should be clearly articulated. 

Speed: I can *generally* keep up, but please be accommodating to other debaters/judges.

Procedurals: down for procedural debates, just situate the arguments/your interp in how/why i should vote. 

K: Down for kritiks, explain your framework well and don't assume i/competitors know what you are talking about/what literature you use. Links should be specific and clear, please repeat your perm.

Be a nice person to everyone in round please!

Karina Guerrero -- Point Loma Nazarene University

Kasim Alimahomed -- Cypress College

5 years college debate, 3 years as a graduate assistant coach, coached 3 college teams and 2 high school squads.  I have voted for everything and anything; tabula rasa.  Can't wait to see you debate!

Keelie Ni -- University of Southern California


Kiefer Storrer -- Maricopa Speech and Debate

Competed 4 years high school Policy, 4 years college parli. Took a year off, judged, then helped coach a comprehensive program in Grad School. Currently in my 2nd year of head coaching, 3rd year of professional coaching. I think debate is whatever you want to make it. It can be a game or a really good platform of advocacy, so I'm pretty supportive of like, inclusive arguments, theory, projects, etc. Speed is fine but especially in Parli give me clear tag lines. You don't need to read DAs to prove abuse on procedurals, just explain to me args you missed out on. Umm. Don't kick offense, please. I like clash and impact calc unless you are warranting out other places I should be specifically voting. Good luck, have fun; don't be a dick. 

Kim Perigo -- San Diego Mesa College


Leigh Tong -- University of California San Diego


Leo Houts -- University of Southern California


Lilly Rumford -- Pepperdine University


Mahnoor Naveed -- Fullerton College


Marc Ouimet -- San Diego State University

� � marc ouimet - SDSU expectations: debate is a game. you will try to employ a winning strategy. do what you want. teams will play relatively nice. people will avoid making inherently reprehensible arguments. preferences: speed is fine, i will ask for pen time if i need it. if you have a rebuttal issue, feel free to call it, but also youâ??ll probably be able to read my non-verbals about how iâ??m feeling regarding an argument but i find 9 times out of 10 the objection is irrelevant. theory specifics: condo, multiple perms, whatever sneaky stuff you want to do is probably fine if you can win it. please accommodate the other team if they ask you to slow down. theory, solvency, links, and impact framing should all get particular. i tend to be a stickler for solvency. performance, narratives, and most flavors of the k are cool but please know the second lines of your lit, because generic parli blips on interesting questions make them uninteresting. about me: competed 2 years Palomar, coached 4 years Palomar, competed 3 years Beach, coached 2 years Beach. presently coaching for San Diego State. i liked to get weird and not have the same debate every time so gestures of creativity are highly appreciated but not required.

Mark Faaita -- CSU Chico

Matt Grisat -- Rio Hondo Community College


Matthew Minnich -- EPCC


Max Groznik -- San Diego State University


Maximilian Discar -- Point Loma Nazarene University

Michael Eberle -- University of La Verne


Michael Dvorak -- Grand Canyon University

Michael Starzynski -- Concordia University Irvine


Nicci Stebbins -- San Diego State University


Nicholas Thomas -- Palomar College


Niroop Rajashekar -- University of Southern California


Olivia Neidhart -- Point Loma Nazarene University

I have a background in NPDA and consider myself open to a variety of arguments and thoughts. As long as you can give logical reasons supported by evidence, I will listen to and entertain your points without bias. With that being said, debate is based in the communicative discipline, so that should be the main focus of the round. Although I am open to speed and other strategies, you should not out spread your opponents or me. Please feel free to have fun in round, I welcome creativity and humor, as long as it is communicated well. Be respectful of each other, think critically and strategically, try your best, and have fun!

Patricia Hughes -- Rio Hondo Community College

When weighing a round, I look first at stock issues, then weigh the clash on the advantage vs disadvantage, using the judging criteria. I like clear analysis of the functionality of each position (plan/counter plan/advantage/disadvantage). Simply put, explain how your warrants lead to your impacts on the advantage/disadvantage. Also explain how your impacts happen, and what your impacts mean. Terminalize, but only use nuclear war or mass extinction if it is actually warranted. On plan/counter plan, explain each plank, how the plan functions (works), and how it is going to solve the issue at hand. Fiat is not clear analysis. Counter plans should have a clear explanation of mutual exclusivity. Permutations should have a new plan text with both plan and counter plan, with an explanation of how they work together. I also have a soft spot for clearly articulated significance arguments. Also, make sure to call out points of order.

� � � � � � � � � � �  When it comes to theory arguments, use them sparingly. Procedurals are useful tools when stock issues are not met by Aff. Call topicalities and trichotomies when the Aff is not upholding their prima facia burdens. Do not run procedurals as a time skew tactic, or as an argument used in every round. I take the rules of debate seriously. Abusing these arguments will not end well for you. When running a procedural, I am looking for clear articulation of the violation, standards, and impacted voters; as well as counter definitions. I do consider RVI arguments; however, they should include counter standards and voters.

I am not a fan of Kâ??s; however, this is your round. If you choose to run a K, make sure you are able to clearly explain the theory, the roll of the ballot/alt, and clearly define what ground the other team has within the round. If I find the K to be exclusionary of the other team, I will vote against it. There should also be a clear link to the K and the resolution. Also, make sure not to bite into your own K. I judge Kâ??s harshly due to their nature of calling precedence in a round. For Kâ??s that are completely off topic from the resolution, I will highly consider arguments of disclosure; however, you do still need to interact with the K to the best of your ability.� 

� � � � � � � � � � �  I have a moderate tolerance for speed; however, I am not a fan of it. I like clear and articulate arguments. I believe speed is a useless tool that is irrelevant to everyday life. Again, this is your round. Before the round begins, I will ask if both teams agree to spread. If there is not an agreement, I will drop the first team to spread. If there is an agreement, be forewarned, if I put my pen down, I can no longer understand your arguments. I pay close attention to calls of slow/clear/speed. If any of the above are called, and the teams it is called against does not slow or improve articulation, they will be dropped. � 

While I understand the beast of competition, there is no need to be rude. I will vote down a team if they are exceptionally rude or condescending. There is no need to belittle the other team; it does not prove your intelligence. Bullying is unacceptable and poor sportsmanlike.� 

Reese Ringo -- University of Southern California


Robert Campbell -- University of California San Diego


Roxanne Tuscany -- Grossmont College


Sabrina Tsai -- University of California San Diego


Sarah Disalvo -- Point Loma Nazarene University


Sarah Hinkle -- Colorado College

I mostly live in the world of IEs (read: 20 years of either competing or coaching) but have moderate experience training in Worlds and IPDA-style debate.


I like speakers who are fair and balanced: Ethics, Argumentation, Strategy, and Style.

Construct your case carefully with well-developed arguments. Build a foundation with clean definitions. Create values/criteria so I know how to weigh out the evidence. Provide Impacts and explain how you get there. I want a lively debate with good clash.  Be well-versed in the topic while implementing high quality and recent research. Respect each other.

By the end of the debate, I should be able to clearly understand the significance of your position to the resolution.

I tend to prefer argumentation to be grounded somewhat in the real world and prefer depth rather than rattling off a list of contentions. Tell me a story. Paint a picture. Speakers who effectively demonstrate why an issue is significant and/or relevant are building strong ethos. I want to be as involved as possible.

Have fun and ignore my non-verbals! I tend to look surly but that's just my face. J


Sarah Grace Crocco -- Northern Arizona University


Scott Plumpback -- San Diego Mesa College


Sean Connor -- Orange Coast College

Stephen Hosmer -- Point Loma Nazarene University


Sue Peterson -- CSU Chico

Updated 9/8/18

I am now primarily judging NFA-LD.

PARLI: If you have me as a parli critic, know that it is not my strength nor my favorite style of debate. I just think that referencing evidence with no ability to check the accuracy of your reference makes it difficult to evaluate conflicting arguments, but I will do my best. Having well-warranted arguments beyond just a source (so explaining the warrant, not just naming the source and claim) will help your efforts. I can flow pretty fast debate, but without evidence, the arguments sometimes come fast and furious and I can't write or type that fast, so slow down a bit if you want everything on my flowsheet at the end of the speech.


As far as argumentative preference, performance debates are not really my cup of tea. I like critical arguments and I'm relatively familiar with the literature, but if you are going to "use the topic as a starting point" on the affirmative instead of actually defending implementation of your plan, I'm probably not going to be your favorite judge. But, I think claiming some methodological advantage to a certain plan is fine and the negative is free to critique it up if they so choose, as long as they in some way specifically engage the affirmative's arguments (usually better if it is the affirmative's arguments and not just the resolution or the status quo, but that is debatable).

I do not enjoy nasty debates where people ad-hom each other, yell at each other, or otherwise argue instead of debate. I think debate should be enjoyable for both the debaters and me -- so be nice and have fun. And if your opponents are not nice, don't get sucked into the evil...maintain your composure.

Rebuttals are key. Make sure you take the time to explain your arguments, how they should be impacted in the debate, how they compare to the other team's.


I am no longer inclined to read much evidence, but if you want me to read evidence because of it being a focus of controversy in the round, identify the evidence by author AND warrant - not just author. I want to know WHAT to read and WHY I'm reading it. I prefer to hear the evidence and hear the explanations and vote on that because debate is about oral argumentation. So, I won't read anything unless I feel like I have to in order to be fair to both sides in the debate.

I am not prone to vote on "this is a rule" unless it is well-warranted. I get that LD has rules and I believe there are reasons for those rules, but I also believe that debaters should be able to articulate those reasons in a round in order to win on those arguments. So, if you are going to make arguments about what should be excluded in a round, be sure to provide warrants other than "its a rule". I am open to debaters asking others to speak more conversational in rounds as that is part of this activity's unique appeal, but I do think that you should be reciprocal - so don't ask for someone to slow down (or yell slow/clear during their speech) and then speak fast in your own speech.

I love a good T debate. Most pre-round questions seem to focus on in-round abuse and competing interps, so I will say here that I think both those arguments are things that can be debated out in the round. I don't HAVE to have in-round abuse, but I'm open as to why I shouldn't evaluate Ts that don't prove it. My default is competing interpretations, BUT if the affirmative is obviously topical under the negative's interpretation and explains such, I don't think they HAVE to have a counterinterp.

If you have any other questions, let me know before the round begins!

Tess Wolfe -- California State University, Long Beach


Toni Nielson -- Fullerton College


Tyler Watkins -- Concordia University Irvine


Vanessa Gabriel -- Grossmont College