Judge Philosophies

Adam Navarro - Palomar


Adam Kaminsky - COC


Alex Glanzman - KCKCC

My email is glanzman94@gmail.com
Please include me in the email chain


4 years college debate for KCKCC (NDT/CEDA, NPDA, and NFA)

NFA-LD champion (2016)

NPTE Top 8 (2016)

NPDA Quarterfinalist (2016)

CEDA Double Octo-Finalist (2014)

3-5 years coaching high school policy

I disliked when debating going onto someoneâ??s paradigm and it was just a mountain of text. So Iâ??m gonna try to be quick and simple

1. Above all else---play to your strengths. I may be viewed as a K hack, but I reward debaters who debate in a way strongest for them, not strongest for me. Iâ??ve been around long enough to be able to evaluate all kinds of argumentation. I adapt to you, not the other way around.

2. Warranting and explanation are key. Evidence isnâ??t written in context to the particular round happening. Itâ??s your job to contextualize it to respond to argumentation. Means I prefer teams who do more than tagline extensions and use their 1AC/1NC shells effectively. Analytical depth is necessary in front of me

3. For virtual debate, going slower during analytics/tags is an absolute must. Lots of reasons why. But mostly itâ??s to ensure that your arguments are translated onto my flow correctly. I can handle top speed, but the disconnect with virtual debate makes it more of a challenge. This is doubly true with theory debates.

4. I tend to err on tech over truth, but capital T truth will always be persuasive no matter what. Judges should be neutral and adapt to your strategies, which means that even if an argument isnâ??t true/is spun in a way that isnâ??t trueâ?¦itâ??s your field.

5. Framing is a big deal to me---things like extinction first, ontology first, etc. helps me filter importance of arguments and tends to help teams more often than not in front of me. Usually people just use framing to just get access to impacts; take it further. Framing is how I evaluate comparisons of arguments and how to come to a decision.

6. I do have some biases. I put heavier solvency burdens on policy affs, for instance. Presumption is usually a legitimate argument in front of me compared to other judges, I believe. So â??defensiveâ? claims can go a little farther. I also tend to be persuaded more by pessimistic claims than optimistic claims in K debate.

7. I pay attention to rhetoric---so check yourself. Check your evidence. Rhetoric PICs and voters are absolutely a viable strategy in front of me. You can win theory against it. Or stuff like â??apologies solveâ?/â?discourse doesnâ??t shape the realâ? etc. Iâ??m just saying

Now onto stuff people like to ask:

1. Can I run a K aff? Absolutely.

2. Do I have to have a plan? Absolutely not

3. What about performance? Go for it. Every speech act is a performance so I donâ??t see why I canâ??t evaluate things like re-narrativizing spaces/poetry/music/story. I did some performance debate in CEDA so I do have a conceptual idea of how to engage and evaluate

4. Will you vote on framework? Yes. So far Iâ??ve voted for it more than against it. I think framework debaters need to be focusing more on how TVAâ??s and their interp solve back the aff instead of just simply going for â??state goodâ? though. Portable skills, institutional influence, switch side are all persuasive net-bens to me

5. Will you vote on T? Yes. Itâ??s how I won NFA. I do find value in the topic. On the whole, competing interps is my default. I can be persuaded reasonability is a good check. I also think for K affs an interp that says â??disengage the topicâ? or â??the topic is violentâ? is sufficient enough to count as a counter-interp to me.

6. What about the K? Most of my experience comes from K debate. Itâ??s my wheelhouse and I have been exposed to a lot of lit over the years so this is the debate I am most comfortable with and can provide the best feedback for. Thatâ??s double edged though---because I have a lot of experience with it, it probably means I have a higher threshold for argumentation unconsciously.

7. How about impact turns? Go for â??em. I love a good de-dev and wipeout debate. Not the biggest fan of Malthus. Absolutely wonâ??t listen to impact turns labeled â??patriarchy goodâ?, â??anti-blackness goodâ?, etc.

8. How about counterplans? This is my weakest area of debate exposure. Iâ??d advise you not to run process CPs because they kinda go over my head. I love PICs though. And I understand simpler CPs like consult, states, xo, etc. But honestly most CP debate has just become a debate over opportunity cost with the net-bensâ?¦so I always use the net-benefit to evaluate whether a CP is even worth it.

9. Will you vote on theory? Yes. Since I tend to go more for tech over truth blippy theory arguments can become round winners if dropped/explained properly.

If you have any specific questions, feel free to ask.

Happy debating.

Alexander Joseph Taylor (9) - PRPJudge


Alexis Arredondo - PCC

I did mostly interp when I competed but am somewhat familiar with debate. �???�??�?� So consider me a layperson for all forms of debate and adjust accordingly.

Alexis Litzky - CCSF

I have spent many years coaching/judging/directing at San Francisco State University, University of San Francisco, and now City College of San Francisco. Notice a theme?

My threshold for argumentation is relatively low: I coach and will vote on any argument that is well supported and persuasively presented. Excellent warrants and evidence will take you farther than empty tagline and generalized debating. I like topic specific education, but I also like new interpretations of education and the topic. I love this activity because in many debates I have witnessed I learned something new about the topic and about the debaters involved.

What does this really mean for debaters? 

1 - I try to let the debaters control the interpretation and framework of the debate. Try to be clear and focused about what you think the criteria or role of the ballot is/should be, and what that means for me. This is the first question I resolve whenever Iâm making a decision.

2 - You should run and go for arguments that you think are germane to the topic and politically salient for you, not what you think I want to hear. I have literally voted for every "type" or "genre" of argument, and I wish you would spend less time trying to overly adapt to my judging preferences. I take judging seriously, and you should know that I approach every debate with the same sense of importance whether it is a first-time Novice or a 2-year long competition with your favorite rival. I try to provide as much intellectual and professional integrity as one can, and I hope you do the same. 

This also means that there is no specific bright line that you need to pass on theory for me to vote for it, or any kind of specific component of an argument that will help you win. There are some normative standards that always affect judges, like you need to have some sort of impact to win the debate. But I canât in good faith say that impacts are always more important that links, but link debates can be incredibly salient if the neg is making a good solvency press. 

3 - I love the flow. Not in an overly fetishistic sort of way, but I definitely take the practice the seriously. My students think itâs weird, and maybe it is. But I love the satisfaction of tracking arguments throughout the debate. This does not mean that if you drop an argument itâs over for you, but you do have to tell me why you decided to spent 6 minutes on framework rather than answering another major argument the opponent is going for. Itâs also the primary tool that will help me resolve many debates. Unless, of course, you tell me why it shouldnât matter. In which case, I will probably still flow (because Iâm me) but please donât take that as an affront to you.

Some thoughts on style:

My background in CEDA/NDT debate means that Iâm fine with speed, but there is a limit to how much I actually think thatâs required. People who are trying to sound fast but actually arenât fast will not be rewarded. People who are clear, fast, and engaging with the arguments and the other team will be rewarded. People who actually use the flow and respond to specific arguments will be rewarded. Youâre also more likely to win the debate. I particularly appreciate it when debaters highlight arguments they think will become particularly key or relevant to the debate.

Other than that, I have some general love for: 

  • New ways of understanding the same old business.

  • Critical interrogation.

  • Thought experiments.

  • Surprises.

  • Debates that inspire and challenge my sense of political engagement.

  • Hannah Arendt.

  • Jokes, smiles, and sassy attitudes. These will get you infinitely farther than rude, brutish, and hurtful debates. You have the rest of your life to be as serious as you want, use this unique space and time to enjoy yourself and learn about the topic and each other.

Enjoy yourself, and remember to have fun! Itâs the weekend and we like to be here!


Alix Lopez - Mt. SAC

Allison Bowman - Moorpark

For parli: I try to just look at arguments made in the round. Both sides should weigh their impacts and explain why they should win. I expect everyone to be respectful to their opponents. I love counterplan debate. I am not the biggest fan of Ks. If you do choose to run a K spend extra time on alt. solvency.  I have no problem with speed or jargon.


For IPDA: I view IPDA separately from parli and try to leave my parli knowledge at the door. I donâ??t think debate jargon or speech belong in IPDA. Delivery and persuasion matter. I view IPDA as a combination of debate and extemp. 

Amanda Pettigrew - MVCC


Amy Hileman - NOVA


Andrew Morgan - DVC

Andy Orr - Southern Idaho


Angelica Grigsby - Maricopa

Debate is about persuading your judge. Having said that, please talk to me, not at me. For all types of debate, let's have some clash? Call points of order in the rebuttal, I will not protect you. If you need to communicate with your partner please do it in a way that is minimally disruptive (I know this will look different in a remote setting but the concept still applies), I will only flow what comes out of their mouth during their speech. I am willing to listen to all types of arguments please just be sure that they are warranted and fully explained. Structure is vital to a clear case. Please, please, please tell me why you win the round in the rebuttal, you donât want to leave it up to me. PS-all road maps are in time.

   This event is not Parli lite. The best way I have heard it explained is that it is dueling extemp speeches. There should be clash, clear arguments, and clear reasons to vote for you.

I prefer a conversational rate and a speaker who engages with their audience rather than just reading their cards. I have only judged 2-3 rounds of LD all year, if you run the round like I know the topic as well as you, you may lose my ballot.

Remember to have fun!

Bart Aikman - COC


Bill Lucio - Harper College

I value good sportsmanship, logical reasoning, and articulate arguments in debate. I personally enjoy debates that focus the debate on the resolution, rather than the definitions of a round. Speakers who speed through their argument or spend their time slandering their opponent will not be rewarded. Challenge yourself by teaching me something new or getting me to think about a particular topic in another way. Focus on the fun. When you're having fun, I am having fun.�?? 

Regarding individual events, speakers should engage in appropriate delivery strategies when performing Platform events, such as proper pronunciation and clarity of words, a wide range of vocal variety, and natural use of gestures. While the overall delivery of a speech weighs heavily in my decision, I also tend to prioritize organization and flow, as well as creativity in topic choice. I'm a firm believer in creative content, but also respect solid and identifiable transitions. Do not go overtime. 

In other individual events, such as Interp, I expect the speaker to fully embody their characters. Take risks, think outside of the box, and use your body and movement in ways that aren't necessarily obvious or overdone. While the argument articulated in an introduction does play a major role in my overall decision, I value a performance that takes me out of this world and puts me into a new one, so really become your character and "own" the world in which they live in. Do not go overtime. 

Lastly, regarding Limited Prep events, I really respect a good, clean delivery, that utilizes all the tools of basic public speaking (organization, variety of examples/sources, confidence in speaking voice, engagement with the audience, etc.). I do not want to hear a "canned" speech, challenge yourself! If I feel like I have heard your speech before, or that the interpretation of your quotation is too much of a stretch, I will most likely reward the other speakers who placed a more creative emphasis on their speech. Students competing in LP events should be constantly reading the news and searching for examples, so i want to see some interesting things I haven't seen before. Do not go overtime, ESPECIALLY if I am giving you time signals throughout the entire speech.

Blake Longfellow - DVC

I am primarily an IE coach and very much approach forensics (including debate) as a communication/persuasive activity. I approach debate with the mindset that all stories are arguments and all arguments are stories. With that said, the story which is the most internally cohesive (narrative probability) and that lines up across the debate (narrative fidelity) is likely to win my ballot.

Here is a list of things Paul Villa thinks you should know about debating in front of me:

- Truth over tech: Blake isn't flowing the debate like this is the national circuit, he is going to take minimal notes, you aren't going to win by pointing out some drop on the flow or technical analysis of the round.

- Don't spread. Like, at all. However fast you are thinking will be fine I'd go slower than that.

- Reading theory is a non-starter, if the other team isn't topical just tell Blake they aren't topical and explain why that means they should lose the debate without getting all technical.

- Blake would probably vote on a K, especially a performance one, assuming it made sense to him in the round.

- Less is more, the more simple the path to the ballot for you the more likely Blake is to vote for you.

Bob Becker - NWC

  As a critic, I believe my task is to weigh the issues presented in the round. I don't enjoy intervening, and try not to do so. To prevent my intervention, debaters need to use rebuttals to provide a clear explanation of the issues. Otherwise, if left on my own, I will pick the issues I think are important. All of that said, I am not an information processor. I am a human being and so are you. If you want me to consider an issue in the round, make sure you emphasize it and explain its importance.

When weighing issues, I always look to jurisdictional issues first. I will give the affirmative some leeway on topicality, but if they can't explain why their case is topical, they will lose. Although some arguments are more easily defeated than others, I am willing to listen to most positions. In reality I probably have a somewhat high threshold for topicality, but if you want to win, you need to spend some time on it and not give the aff any way out of it. In-round abuse is not necessary, but if that argument is made against you, then you need to explain why topicality is important (jurisdiction, aff always wins, etc.) I don’t require competing interpretations.

I am fine with critical arguments, but you need to explain how they impact the round. I have found few students can explain how I should evaluate real-world impacts in a debate world, or how I should evaluate and compare real world and debate world impacts. I’m fine with critical affs, but you better have some good justification for it. “We don’t like the resolution” doesn’t cut it with me. If your critical arguments conflict with your disad, you better have some “contradictory arguments good” answers.

Performance based argument need to be sufficiently explained as to how they prove the resolution true or false. Or, I need to know how to evaluate it. If you don’t tell me, I will evaluate it as I would an interp round.

As with everything else, it depends on how the impacts are explained to me. If one team says “one million deaths” and the other says “dehume,” but doesn’t explain why dehume is worse than deaths, I’ll vote for death. If the other team says dehume is worse because it can be repeated and becomes a living death, etc., then I’ll vote for dehume. I think I’m telling you that abstract impacts need to be made concrete, but more importantly, explain what the issue is and why I should consider it to be important.

I don't mind speed, but sometimes I physically can't flow that fast. I will tell you if I can't understand you. Remember, it is YOUR responsibility to make sure I understand what you are saying. Above all, be professional. This activity is fun. That’s why I’m here, and I hope that is the reason you are here as well.

Bonnie Gabel - McHenry


Bradd Howard (9) - PRPJudge


Brandan Whearty - Palomar


Brandon Wood - COD


Brian Bohr - COD


Brianna Broady - PCC

1.What is the most important criteria you consider when evaluating a debate?

  • As a judge of primarily individual events, it is important that debaters are clear with their arguments. I am not opposed to any specific arguments as long as you provide clear evidence and warrants to justify your stances.

2. What are your expectations for proper decorum from the debaters?

  • Be respectful to each other and have fun in your round. Be sure to communicate with each other. Clearly respond to each otherÃ?¢??s arguments and engage in clash.

3. What strategies/positions/arguments are you predisposed to listen to and consider when you vote?

  •  I would say that I am open to any argument as long as it is well thought out and clearly structured. It is also crucial that arguments are fairly easy to follow along.

4. How do you evaluate speed, jargon, and technical elements?

  • I prefer speed to be at a conversational pace and for jargon and technical elements to remain at a minimum or clearly defined.

Brittany Hubble - El Camino


Do what you want and make the debate space fun and educational. Don't be petty. Don't lie. Don't abuse flex time.  


I competed in debate for El Camino College for 2 years from 2013-2015 and I have been coaching parli for El Camino since. While I attended many CC tournaments, I also competed at several 4-year tournaments including NPDA and NPTE. My partner and I ran all types of arguments in debate (policy, critical affs, kritiks, etc.), but typically leaned towards policy debate. However, you are welcome to debate any way you like, but you should be prepared to justify your strategy if it is called into question. I tend to favor the strategy that is the smartest, most warranted and best for winning that round. 


You should have them! I believe it is your job to tell me which impacts should carry the most weight in the round and why. I have no problem voting on a nuclear war or economic collapse scenario as long as you have a clear warranted story to explain how you get there. I am also not opposed to you asking me to prefer systemic impacts. It is really up to you, but I will usually default to net benefits and evaluate the impacts using timeframe, probability and magnitude unless I am told otherwise. I really really like impact calc and think it is a necessary component to winning a debate. 

Case Debate:

I really enjoy the case debate and I really dislike debates where the aff is never discussed. You should engage with the aff no matter what you are running on the neg. Case turns and offense on case are awesome. I am not opposed to voting on 8 minutes of case out of the in fact this is a great strategy for refuting both policy and critical affs when done well. 


Love them. Case specific disads with nuanced internal link stories are great. Please make sure they are not linear, as I will have a low threshold for voting on the aff outweighing on probability. 


Another excellent negative strategy. There should be a net benefit to the CP, competitiveness and it should solve the aff. Topical counterplans are fine. PICs are fine but I am also open to hearing why PICs or other types of counterplans are bad. Again, you just need to justify your strategy and win why it is a good idea. 


I am not a fan of multiple conditional advocacies but you can read them if you want. In general, I prefer unconditional advocacies and have no problem voting on condo bad. However, if you win the condo debate I will still vote for you and wont punish you for it. 


I think there are a lot of rounds where the K is the best and sometimes only good negative strategy. However, I prefer case/topic specific links and arguments other than they used the state.¢? I am not saying this cant be a link, but you should probably have more compelling ones. I also really like well-warranted solvency that is specific to your method/alternative. You should be well versed in the lit supporting your arguments. I dont like people blurting out tags and then having no idea how to explain them. I think you should call people out on this and use it as offense against them. You should also not assume that I have read the lit on your K and know all of the terms you are using. You are not doing yourself any good by confusing both your opponents and me. Most of this applies to the K on the aff as well. I prefer critical affs that defend the topic or use the topic as a springboard for discussion. I will vote on affs that do not depend the topic, but I will also entertain arguments that say you should. 

Identity Arguments:

With the increase in identity arguments being proposed in debate, there is something you should know. While I understand their purpose and ability to be an avenue for individuals to promote advocacy, I find them difficult to evaluate and I am probably not the judge for you. Past experiences debating them have produced triggering memories and force me to include a bias when deciding rounds. I have been in a round where debate became an unsafe space and I would hate to have to adjudicate a round that would recreate that for another individual. 


I think theory is a great tool for both the aff and neg to secure ground in the debate and explain why certain arguments should be excluded from a debate. Your argument should have impacts! Dont just say it is bad for education or fairness then move on. You should also have counterinterps, reasons to prefer, offense, etc. against theory to win. 


Speed is fine but please be clear. I dont see how it is beneficial for making arguments that only your partner can hear and understand. I also believe the round should be accessible and you should respect a clear. There is nothing impressive about being a bully and spreading someone out of a round after they have repeatedly asked you to slow down. You should probably be able to win without it. Otherwise, I should have no problem flowing you and think speed should be used as a tool to make a lot of good arguments. 

Defending the Topic:

Whether or not you choose to defend the topic is up to you. I think you should provide substantial justifications for why you should be required to defend the topic. I will not drop a team for choosing not defend the topics, as I feel the debate space is yours to decide how to manage. However, I believe there are valid arguments to be made why defending the topic is important and how abandoning the topic can be bad. I find it best when negative teams engage with the affirmative in addition to justifying why they should defend the topic. I have both voted for and against teams on framework as well. You really just need to win the argument. 

Speaker Points:

If you can do the above well, you will probably receive good speaker points from me. I tend to believe speaker points are arbitrary and tend to awards speaker points on the higher side. That being said, I reserve the right to punish teams for egregious behavior by deducting speaks.


Be organized and sign post. Dont assume you want me to apply arguments in specific places without being told to. I have pretty apparent nonverbals and you can usually tell if I think your argument is bad. You should probably use that to your advantage and move on. Read plan texts, advocacies, interpretations, counterinterps, role of the ballots, etc. twice and give a copy to your opponents if they want one. I prefer policy debate over value debate and think you can discuss the same arguments in a policy round more effectively. Overall, I think you should have fun with the debate and make it fun for everyone. I am open to answering questions to clarify anything or regarding specifics that may relate to your round. 

As flex time has been introduced, I am not particularly receptive to you asking for a copy of every interp, plan, ROB, etc. during speeches. This also means that you don't get to wait to start your flex until you get copies of whatever you want a copy of. Your flex starts immediately after the previous speech. I also don't think it is a particularly strong theoretical argument to claim that you should be handed these texts during the speech. This is parli not policy and you should be flowing these things. That is not to say I will not vote on theory that claims you should be granted these luxuries, but I believe making case arguments are a much better use of your time. 

I also don't really believe in RVIs especially on theory. 

Bryan Malinis - SD Mesa


Charli Aster - Casper College


Dan Moss (6) - PRPJudge


Dana Trunnell - Prairie State


Danny Cantrell - Mt. SAC

Testing 123

Daren Carpenter - TJC Phi Rho Pi

What is the most important criteria you consider when evaluating a debate?

In IPDA, I am looking for logical argumentation, public speaking skills, source support and courtesy. This should be a â??real worldâ? discussion on an important issue. My background is as an Interp/Speaking coach.  However, I have judged IPDA for over four years.

What are your expectations for proper decorum from the debaters?

Courtesy is extremely important. Of course, students should point out flaws in their competitor's argument. However, the attitude should be "I think my way is better" not "you are wrong, stupid or deliberately misleading us." Also, I expect excellent public speaking skills.  I will be looking for proper posture, fillers and eye contact.  As the Phi Rho Pi IPDA rules state, â??extemporaneous delivery is required.â?  The Phi Rho Pi ballot also asks for judges to rate students on source support. So, I will be listening for sources (just like in Extemp).

What strategies/positions/arguments are you predisposed to listen to and consider when you vote?

I will listen to any logical argument. Do not waste time pointing out an infraction that would lead to a technical win in parliamentary debate.  Instead, use your time refuting the logic your competitorâ??s argument.  Please do not keep telling me that I should vote for you.  Instead, use this valuable time to support your argument. Students will be keeping up with their own time.

How do you evaluate speed, jargon, and technical elements?

All parliamentary and LD debate jargon should be completely avoided. To be clear, if you use speed, I will simply put my pen down and those comments will be disregarded. Your speed should be the same as we were speaking in the elevator about the weather. Debate jargon and spreading comments will not benefit you and should be avoided. I will not be flowing the debate. Instead, I will be listening and evaluating your argument logically. 

Das Nugent-Odasso - SD Mesa


David Nadolski - OCC


David Sonnenberg - OCC


Dewi Hokett - Palomar


Doug Hall - Casper College


Fallon Harper - PRPJudge


Floyd McConnell - SJC

I am an old school judge.Ã?  I am looking for authentic communication skills.Ã?  These include the following:

1.Ã?  No spreading-- I want to hear clear and normal speaking speeds.Ã?  I know we get anxious at times, keep it to where the average person can understand you.Ã?  It gives me a headache, I don't want to listen to it.Ã?  I will say "clear" once. That is your signal to slow down after that, I am no longer following your arguments.Ã?  Ã? 

2.Ã?  Please polite to your opponent.Ã?  Rudeness will not be acceptable.Ã? Ã? 

3.Ã?  I realize we are in "Space," however please make sure you are wearing something you would wear to a job interview.Ã?  Most of us only have to be dressed from the waist up.Ã?  At least make that effort, even if it is from your place of residence.Ã? Ã? 

4.Ã?  Argumentation:Ã?  I am open to all arguments, as long as they are organized.Ã?  I love a great debate, stay organized, on point and signpost.Ã?  Please don't me work hard for your ballot.Ã? Ã? 

5.Ã?  I prefer if you are on camera when you are not speaking.Ã?  Ã? Let's not be looking down at phones... etc..Ã?  It is really obvious.Ã? Ã? 

For policy I love the stock issues.  As for Kritiks,  No.  This communicates to me you have no arguments.   I have only seen/ heard 2 great K arguments in 25 years.   

Have a great tournament!!!

Francesca Bishop - El Camino

My background: I competed in CEDA for 3 years; I have coached parli for about 20 and NFA-LD for 10.  

I had my years of debating; it is now your turn. There are lots of things I believe about debate and the world in general, but I try not to bring them into the round. Thus, if you tell me something, I write it down and assume it true unless it is refuted. That means that you can lose a round if you drop one little argument, though it's unlikely unless your opponents blow it up, but if you drop a lynchpin argument, or a framework argument (where I look first) it could be bad. Although I try to be tabula rasa, there are a couple of exceptions: One is if you tell me to use my ballot as a tool in any way, or ask me to vote on real world impacts. I see this as a demand for intervention based on what I actually believe, therefore I may not vote on arguments that have "won."  A second exception is if you tell me something that I know to be untrue--so please don't guess or make stuff up. 

Because I try to base my decision based solely on arguments that are made in the round, I don't assume anything. Therefore, you need to tell me why something matters. For example, don't expect me to assume climate change is happening or that it's bad, or for that matter, that nuclear war is bad. Likewise, you don't have to run only conventionally believed positions. Arguments are just that--arguments. I don't assume you believe them or if they are "true." In general, know that I don't believe that debate is a search for the truth; I believe it is a game.  As when you play all games, you should have fun!!!

Harry Bodell - Highland


Jacqueline Yu - PCC

Keep the debate clean and well structured. Provide a road map and be clear with the order of contentions, sub-points, evidence, etc. I want to be able to flow the debate with ease! 

I'm open to all arguments - the more clash the better. If an opponent drops an argument - do not let that be the sole reason for the judge to vote, still rationale the point made. 

For partner communication in parli, be careful of puppeteering. 

Please do not spread. Breathe! 

But most of all - 1) don't be rude 2) respect and be kind to those in the round (and in general, everyone), and 3) have fun! Bring that passion!

Jamie Whittington-Studer - Moorpark

I donâ??t really like giving a philosophy because I think your education in this activity should not be limited/influenced by my preferences. I will adapt to the round and evaluate it based on the parameters set by the debaters. Iâ??m not going to do any work for you----tell me where you want your arguments applied, weigh your impacts, stress where/why you are winning, etc. I value clash & accessibility in debate. Without accessibility, there can be no clash. I have no problems with speed or jargon, but please be courteous with your opponent (I probably wonâ??t clear you, but if your opponent does, you need to slow down.) Off-time roadmaps & a clear structure promote accessibility and make everyoneâ??s life easier. Just have fun & respect your opponent. 

Jay Arntson - PCC

  1. This judging philosophy only pertains to parliamentary debate.�???????�??????�?????�????�???�??�?�  I perceive my role as adapting myself to the sort of round the debaters would like to have more so than debaters adapting to me.�???????�??????�?????�????�???�??�?�  I will pretty much entertain any argument a debater wishes to advance.�???????�??????�?????�????�???�??�?�  I typically see debate as a game rather than a requirement to relec the so-called real world.�???????�??????�?????�????�???�??�?� 

  2. I don�???????�??????�?????�????�???�??�?�¢??t mind debaters being assertive but needs to be balanced with empathy and compassion.�???????�??????�?????�????�???�??�?�  I believe language has power and ebaters should own the implications of their rhetoric.

  3. The argument I vote for will only be the one the debaters in the round assert an not one of my own.�???????�??????�?????�????�???�??�?�  My RFD will always be specific to an argument the debaters made in the round.�???????�??????�?????�????�???�??�?�  I am fine with debaters kicking arguments.�???????�??????�?????�????�???�??�?�  In-round abuse is easier to vote for than potential abuse.�???????�??????�?????�????�???�??�?�  I am willing to vote on any procedural or kritik/project.�???????�??????�?????�????�???�??�?�  I am comfortable with debate theory.

  4. I will adapt to whatever speed the debaters choose to have.�???????�??????�?????�????�???�??�?�  Please adjust to debaters with disability concerns.�???????�??????�?????�????�???�??�?�  I am familiar with flowing speed and understanding technical jargon.�???????�??????�?????�????�???�??�?�  I have judged debate for 10+ years in a variety of formats (policy, parliamentary, Lincoln-Douglas, IPDA, etc.).�???????�??????�?????�????�???�??�?�  I graduated from UC Berkeley as a double major in Philosophy and Rhetoric.�???????�??????�?????�????�???�??�?�  My Masters is in Communication Studies from Cal State Long Beach.�???????�??????�?????�????�???�??�?�  I have been a debate coach for 12 years.�???????�??????�?????�????�???�??�?� �???????�??????�?????�????�???�??�?� 

Jeannie Hunt - NWC

I want to be able to judge the round with no intervention on my part.  That means a couple of things.  You need to establish a framework that I can follow to evaluate the round.  I don’t care what that framework is, but I want one – policy making, critical, big picture, etc.  That framework is what I will follow, so please don’t set the round up as a stock round, and then ask me to look at the big picture at the end.  More importantly, give me something to look at in the end.  I would love to hear some impact analysis, some reasons to prefer, something tangible for me to vote on.  Absent that, I have to intervene. 


There are no specific arguments that I prefer over another.  I will vote on pretty much anything, and I am game for pretty much anything.  I do expect that you will not subject yourself to performative contradictions.  If you run a k, you should be willing to live in the round with the same k standards you are asking us to think about.  However, it is the job of the opposing team to point that out…  This is true of any theory based argument you choose to run.  I am old, which means that I think the 1AC is important.  If you are not going to address it after the 1AC, let me know so I don’t have to spend time flowing it.


Critical rounds invite the judge to be a part of the debate, and they bring with them a set of ethics and morals that are subjective.  I love critical debate, but competitors need to be aware that the debate ceases to be completely objective when the judge is invited into the discussion with a K.  Make sure the framework is very specific so I don’t have to abandon objectivity all together.


Finally, make your own arguments.  If you are speaking for, or allowing your partner to speak for you, I am not flowing it. It should be your argument, not a regurgitation of what your partner said three seconds ago.  Prompting someone with a statement like, “go to the DA” is fine.  Making an argument that is then repeated is not.


Delivery styles are much less important to me than the quality of the argument, but that doesn’t mean you should have no style.  You should be clear, structured and polite to everyone in the round (including your partner if it is team).  You can at least take your hat off and tuck your shirt in. Having a bad attitude is as bad as having a bad argument.  Speed is not a problem if it is clear.


Because I don’t want to intervene, I don’t appreciate points of order.  You are asking me to evaluate the worth of an argument, which skews the round in at least a small way.  Additionally, I think I flow pretty well, and I know I shouldn’t vote on new arguments.  I won’t.  If you feel particularly abused in the round, and need to make a point of some sort, you can, but as a strategy to annoy the other team, or me, it is ill advised. 

Jedi Curva - Mt. SAC

Jeff Toney - Dark Horse

I feel like an OG debate judge, even though several others have been around longer than me. However, I think it is only fair that I acknowledge that I have been a squirrel in several round in the past 5 years. In other words, your rep means as much to me as a Stark in Game of Thrones. With that being said here are my positions.

Counterplan - I do not have a silly disposition on them. However, that doesn't mean I will not vote for good condo bad theory.

Theory - I hate potential abuse - I got pulled over 21 times in one year and received two fix-it tix so... If you are going to run theory I need to know the specific ground lost. Tell me what positions you couldn't run, or what links you cannot logically gain access to because of whatever the other team is doing.

Weighing - I tend to prefer bigger magnitudes over smaller more probable impacts. If you are going to go small then framing probably should accompany your position. In addition, weigh through your framing!

In general, I look for the most straightforward way out of the debate. When I was a new judge, I used to do the most, looking at every sheet 3 or 4 times only to come up with the same decision I had 20 minutes prior. Now, I let yall point me in the right direction. If you want me to vote for you, walk me down the path. I put a lot of weight on rebuttals. So, during your impact framing keep that in mind.

Jeff Przybylo - Harper College

Public debate should be accessible by any member of the public. To observe or adjudicate, audience members do not need to possess any special knowledge or experience in debate. IPDA is designed to be observed by the public.

In all forms of debate, eloquence in delivery is important.

I believe debaters should speak to each other with respect, enthusiasm, and a positive attitude towards the exercise of debating IDEAS.

Debate is an exercise in presenting and supporting ideas. It is not a war.

Debates should be focused on the positive exchange of ideas. I find debates about debate utterly boring.

For individual events, I value creativity.  Go ahead and break the "rules." As long as what you are doing serves the literature/topic I value what you are doing. I believe that public performance is art. Let your creativity flow!

Public address events should be well organized, well researched, creative, and eloquently delivered.

Interp events are creative performances.   I do not believe that there necessarily needs to be a stated "argument." I believe that performances that portray strong characters and evoke an emotional response have great value. I value an emotional journey and entertainment over the presentation of some sort of overtly stated "argument." As I stated above, public performance is a form of art. What you make me FEEL and what I learn about the human condition is much more important to me and following through on a contrived "argument" stated in your introduction.     Be artistic.

In the limited preparation events, I value eloquent delivery, supported claims, and an organized message. The format or approach is less important to me. As long as what you are doing is clear and makes sense, I promise to have an open mind.

Jen Abouzeid - Southern Idaho


Jennifer Gutierrez (4) - PRPJudge


Jennifer Hidalgo (1) - PRPJudge


Jenny Billman - SIC

I competed in LD and parli debate. I have coached LD, parli, and IPDA. I believe it's important to use time wisely and be respectful. I'll listen to debates on anything else. 

Jim Dobson - LPC


Joan Andrews - TJC Phi Rho Pi

What is the most important criteria you consider when evaluating a debate?

In IPDA, I am looking for logical argumentation, public speaking skills, source support and courtesy. This should be a â??real worldâ? discussion on an important issue. My background is as an Interp/Speaking coach.  However, I have judged IPDA for over four years.

What are your expectations for proper decorum from the debaters?

Courtesy is extremely important. Of course, students should point out flaws in their competitor's argument. However, the attitude should be "I think my way is better" not "you are wrong, stupid or deliberately misleading us." Also, I expect excellent public speaking skills.  I will be looking for proper posture, fillers and eye contact.  As the Phi Rho Pi IPDA rules state, â??extemporaneous delivery is required.â?  The Phi Rho Pi ballot also asks for judges to rate students on source support. So, I will be listening for sources (just like in Extemp).

What strategies/positions/arguments are you predisposed to listen to and consider when you vote?

I will listen to any logical argument. Do not waste time pointing out an infraction that would lead to a technical win in parliamentary debate.  Instead, use your time refuting the logic your competitorâ??s argument.  Please do not keep telling me that I should vote for you.  Instead, use this valuable time to support your argument. Students will be keeping up with their own time.

How do you evaluate speed, jargon, and technical elements?

All parliamentary and LD debate jargon should be completely avoided. To be clear, if you use speed, I will simply put my pen down and those comments will be disregarded. Your speed should be the same as we were speaking in the elevator about the weather. Debate jargon and spreading comments will not benefit you and should be avoided. I will not be flowing the debate. Instead, I will be listening and evaluating your argument logically. 

John Nash - MVCC


John Corum - SIC

Jolinda Ramsey (6) - PRPJudge


Joshua Green - Prairie State


Justin Blacklock - SAC


Kacy Stevens - COD


Kevyn Sutter - Highland


Kim Perigo - SD Mesa


Kirt Shinemann (3) - PRPJudge


Kouamy Davis Brown (7) - PRPJudge


Krishna Desai (4) - PRPJudge


Krista Appelquist - MVCC


Kyle Duffy - COC


Lauren Morgan - COD


Liz Fritz (4) - PRPJudge


Lucy Giusto - Contra Costa

M'Liss Hindman - TJC Phi Rho Pi

Madison Edwards (6) - PRPJudge


Marcos Santos - PCC

For individual events, I look for how well rounded the performance is with regards to content and delivery. If it�????�???�??�?�¢??s close, I usually give the advantage to the most engaging speaker. For debate, I simply give the advantage to the more persuasive and logical arguments that are presented in a clear and digestible manner.�????�???�??�?� 

Margaret Bilos - Harper College

I believe an IPDA debate should be a structured discussion between two people who may disagree about a topic but are respectful, thoughtful, friendly, and conversational.�  It should be viewed more as a well-reasoned, well-delivered philosophical disagreement that anyone can judge rather than a highly specialized format.�  I would rather hear you disagree over the arguments and claims rather than hear you debate about debate.� � 

I like to imagine that we all went out to dinner and cracked open a fortune cookie.�  One of you agreed and the other disagreed and you talked and argued, bringing up examples and points.�  After fifteen minutes or so, I said one of you won and we all enjoyed dessert.

In public address, I am looking for connection to audience, an interesting topic, solid delivery, convincing research, and credible support.� 

For interpretation events, I am hoping to be drawn into the story, the drama, and the character that you are creating.�  The best performers might not teach us a lesson, but they can sweep us up into a beautiful moment.�  I am less concerned with rigid rules and conventions if what you're doing makes sense and adds something to the piece and character.� � 

In limited preparation events, I am looking for a speech with good structure, interesting arguments, and eloquent delivery.�  If you are thoughtful and clean, I am hoping to learn something new or see it in a new way.

Overall, be creative, be friendly, be conversational, be expressive, be in the moment!� � I'm looking for creativity, passion, energy and for you to put me at ease.�  My favorite speakers, in all events, makes the audience feel like a valued part of the conversation.� � If you are having a good time- we will have a good time!

Matt Contreras - OCC

Matt Reynolds - Southern Idaho


Matthew Maddex - CF


Matthew Shoop - PCC

I'm basically a lay judge when it comes to debate.�????????�???????�??????�?????�????�???�??�?�  I've seen a lot of IPDA and very much enjoy the event but I'm not versed in much of the terminology of debate.�????????�???????�??????�?????�????�???�??�?�  My decisions come down to the strength of arguments.�????????�???????�??????�?????�????�???�??�?�  Please signpost whenever you can to help me follow your arguments.�????????�???????�??????�?????�????�???�??�?�  Other than that just be clear!�????????�???????�??????�?????�????�???�??�?� 

McCade Smith Fletcher (6) - PRPJudge


Michael Starzynski - El Camino

tabula rasa, no spreading, roadmaps and signposts please!

Michael McHan - Grossmont

I'll try to keep this as brief and simple as possible.

For those competing virtually:

  • All competitors cameras should be on. If you have bandwidth concerns please let me know before the round starts. Audio should be muted when not speaking.
  • Do not spread. If you are gasping for air in between words you are speaking too fast. 
  • Do not hesitate to ask your opponents to slow down their delivery if you are having a hard time following. 
  • Demonstrate decorum. I appreciate it when competitors are respectful to each other. 

For Parliamentary Debate:

  • Structure, structure, structure.
  • The PMC speech should contain a clear and fair resolutional analysis. Be very clear when providing the voting criterion (V/C) and articulating how the judge should weigh the round. *Remember, if the Gov. team fails to offer a V/C then the Opp. has the right to do so for them. 
  • Please make sure you are signposting and clearly labeling your arguments. 
  • Not a fan of Ks. 
  • Okay with Ts, but not when levied as a strategy to take up time. 
  • Both sides should have clear, numbered voters in their final speeches. Don't just summarize existing arguments but TELL me why you should get my vote.
  • Ultimately, I like to hear a clean debate, with ample clash, and arguments properly linked and warranted. 

For IPDA Debate:

Since IPDA was created for a lay audience it is important that debaters keep their cases as simple and clear as possible. 

  • Very important to speak with a clear and calm pace. 
  • Signposting and labeling your arguments is a necessity. 
  • Please do not get too fancy with the voting criterion. 
  • Avoid technical debate jargon.
  • Offer numbered voters (reasons why you won the debate) in final speeches.
  • Be kind and respectful to each other.
  • Smile and have fun! 

If you have questions about something that was not mentioned in my judging philosophy please do not hesitate to ask me before the round begins! 

Michael Leach - COC


Michael Williams - PCC

I have participated and judged debate for awhile so I am okay with any style or strategy that the debaters use. As long it follows the rules of the debate format and is properly structured and articulated.

Monica Flores-Garcia - PCC

I'm an IE judge/coach! I'm open to any style and strategy as long as students stick to the following:�?????�????�???�??�?� 

  • No Spreading:Ã??????Ã?????Ã????Ã???Ã??Ã? Speed won't add clarity to your arguments or make them more persuasive. Please avoid speaking too quickly. I want to be able to catch every word you say.
  • Parli and LD Jargon: Avoid using this kind of jargon especially when you're competing in IPDA. Your speeches should be accessible to any/all judges watching in terms of clarity.
  • Be Respectful: Attack your opponent's contentions, not them. Please avoid fighting/arguing with your partner. Be nice to everyone in the round!

Please do the following:

  • Cameras On: Please turn on your camera! You miss out on several communication tools (eye contact, hand gestures, facial expressions) when we can't see you!
  • Stay Organized: Good conversational speed, transition phrases, signal words etc. will alllow me to follow you better and more easily.
  • Use Sources: Utilize sources to build your case! Analyze and explain why they support your claims along with why we need to know this information. Don't assume I know how you'd like me to interpret this evidence and move forward without connecting the citation back to your argument.Ã??????Ã?????Ã????Ã???Ã??Ã? 

Natalie Kellner - LPC


Nathan Carter - NOVA


Neal Stewart - Moorpark

I evaluate IPDA, like any other event, on a combination of content and delivery. Debaters should treat opponents, judges, and audience members with respect. Feel free to make any argument you feel can be persuasively explained to a lay audience. Speed, jargon, and technical elements should be appropriate to a lay audience.

Neal Heatherly (4) - PRPJudge


Nick Matthews - Cerritos

Hello! I am a coach at Cerritos College. I competed in policy debate for four years in high school, and I did two years of NFA-LD and four years of NPDA at UCLA. I have been coaching in PSCFA since 2013. Here are some things you will want to know when I am judging you:

  1. I am deaf! Literally, not figuratively. This means you must speak at a conversational speed in front of me. Any rate of speed that is faster than the dialogue of "The West Wing" will probably result in me understanding maybe 20% of what you are saying, which is not conductive to your chances of winning.

  2. My default evaluation method in policy rounds is to compare a topical plan to the world of the status quo or a competitive counterplan or alternative. As a competitor, I specialized in straight-up strategies: disads, counterplans, procedurals, and case. These are also the debates I am most competent at judging. Donât let me stop you from arguing what you are most comfortable with, but my understanding of straight-up debate is a hell of a lot stronger than my understanding of K debate.

  3. I reward big-picture narratives, intuitive arguments, comparative impact calculus, and strategic decision-making. In your rebuttal speech, you should tell me a story explaining why you have won the debate.

  4. I rarely vote for arguments I donât understand.

  5. I am biased against arguments that rely on faulty factual premises. I may vote for such arguments from time to time, but even minimal responses will likely defeat them.

  6. My biggest pet peeve is when you whine instead of making an argument:
    - Whining: âTheir implementation is vague and they donât explain it! They donât solve!â? (Waaah!)
    - Argument: âI have three reasons why their shoddy implementation of the plan undermines solvency. Firstâ?¦â?

  7. The affirmative team should read a plan or an advocacy/thesis statement with a clearly defined text. The text should be written down for the opponent if requested.

  8. I donât care if you stand or sit or if you prompt your partner a few times; just don't parrot half their speech to them. You do not need to call points of order in prelims, and please do not do so excessively.

Noelle Anderson - Moorpark

I judge IPDA based on the arguments made in the round and how each debater adapts while listening to their opponent. Additionally, I take into account delivery and camaraderie. Please avoid debate jargon or talking so fast that the audience cannot follow along. 

Paul Cummins - SIC

Paul Villa - DVC

Update 1/23/2021:

Parli: I have decided to live the rest of my life as a comms judge. I am not kidding. I don't believe in condo, as in I don't think it exists. If I don't understand your argument I am not voting for it, especially its solvency. I also am going to treat all advocacies as literal, so if your alt says "vote negative to ride the rainbow" I am going to assume you actually want me to evaluate whether someone riding a rainbow would resolve for the impacts. It doesn't. I can't take it anymore. Also, anything approaching fast is too fast. You can go slightly above conversational. Also, there is a reason that there is a topic each round, I implore you to try and figure out why. Play around and find out, word is bond.

LD: I like the rules. I don't really care how fast you go in LD, I am not flowing anyways unless it is analytics, slow down if the other debater asks.

Background: I am the director of debate at Diablo Valley College, I competed in LD and NPDA at University of the Pacific for 3 years and then was an assistant coach for the team during grad school. I can hang, I just hate sophistry and vacuous debate.

Raffaela Baker - Saddleback


Raman Deol - Dark Horse

I will listen to any argument. Everything is debatable. Show me clear terminalized impacts.

Rebecca Gonzalez - Cerritos

My name is Rebecca Gonzalez. I am an adjunct instructor at Cerritos College and also serve as a part-time coach for the Forensics team. I primarily focus on coaching oral interpretation of literature events including prose, poetry, and dramatic interpretation. I, personally, have a background in oral interpretation, as I have been in competitive theatre and speech events since elementary school. In terms of debate, while I am exposed to it as a part-time Forensics coach and have judged a few rounds, I certainly would not consider myself as being particularly experienced, especially when it comes to specific event formalities, rules, and jargon. I view debate as a communication event and would prefer for competitors to be mindful of delivery, especially in terms of speed.

Ricky Lopez (4) - PRPJudge


Rizamae Enriquez (4) - PRPJudge


Robert Hawkins - DVC

Roger Willis-Raymondo - Mt. SAC

n /a

Rolland Petrello - Moorpark

As a debater, I competed in both NDT and CEDA, however, I left those forms of debate as a coach when I felt that they lacked any semblance of 'real-world' argumentation.  I do not consider myself a 'games-theory' judge, nor do I consider myself purely 'Tabula Rasa'.  I do not abandon my knowledge or common sense when I come into a debate round.  This does not mean, however, that I am an 'interventionist.'  I will only impose my thoughts/feelings into the round in the event that I am absolutely sure that arguments are erroneous.

If I were to describe my philosophy, it would be that of 'a critic of argument.'  This is to say that if your opponent drops an argument it does not necessarily mean that you win the round:

  1. You have only won whatever persuasiveness the argument had to begin with.  If it had a 'Persuasiveness Quotient' of 0% when it was issued then you have won an argument that is meaningless.  If it was a good argument (a PQ of 80%) then the argument will have much more weight in the round.
  2. Not every argument is a 'voter' and simply labeling it as such does not make it so.  In fact, there are few trends more annoying than labeling everything a 'voter.'  If you want me to vote on it, you had better explain why, in the context of this round, it is.

My first preference has to do with speed.  I used to believe that I could flow 'almost' anyone.  I am realistic enough to know that this is simply no longer the case.  I'm out of practice and in my experience most of the time people do not speak clearly when they spread anyway.  Additionally, most of the time spread is unnecessary.  Bottom line, if you went too fast for me to flow it - I won't consider it in the round.

 My second preference has to do with specific arguments:

  • Topicality - I DO believe that topicality is a relevant issue in Parli.  I am tired of seeing Government cases that have little or nothing to do with the topic.
  • Kritiks - Most of the kritiks I have seen are interesting theory with little 'real world' relevance.  If you're going to run it, make it real world.  I find it hard to believe that a single specific language choice will destroy humanity.
  • Resolutions - I believe there are three types of resolutions: fact, value, and policy - don't try to twist one of them into something else. Just debate it straight up.

My third preference has to do with behavior.

  • Do Not artificially limit the number of questions allowed.  Take what you have time for.

 My fourth preference is that while I view IPDA as debate, it should not be Parli LD.

 Finally, if you have specific questions, ask me before the round.  And don't ask me to disclose, if I feel like it, I will.


Roxanne Tuscany - Grossmont

Judging philosophy when Virtual

First of all, I am sorry that we are doing debates virtually,

but also happy that we have been able to continue debating.

For Parliamentary Debaters:

I love Parliamentary debate.  I've been coaching and judging this style for at least 20 years.

Cameras:  I would like you to have your cameras on, all the time.  Unless, you are having major technical problems, please keep them on. Your non-verbals are part of the debate for me.

Timers:  Each debater can time themselves, of course. But I would like to tell you when you will begin, and when I start the time.  I know this isn't how you've been doing it, but I am not sure why your first words in a debate should be: time starts now.   I would like to hear your first words, be the first strong words of your debate.

No spreading.  You can speak at a quick pace, but with cameras and microphones and Wi-Fi issues I may not be able to hear you clearly if you are speaking too fast.

Organization and structure:  I want to hear clear, well structured cases.  Sign posts and road maps should be within your speech, not at the top only.  There are many styles and organizational formats to use for debate (I've seen and heard a lot), so make sure that your style is very clearly stated.

I want to hear a clear criteria, telling me exactly how you want me to judge the debate at the end of the round.

I still like to hear Points of Information within speeches. 

In rebuttals I am listening for numbered voters, most of the time.

Otherwise, enjoy the debates!

For IPDA debaters:

I understand that this is a style that anyone should be able to judge.  Therefore, I want to hear very limited use of debate jargon, a conversational tone and a persuasive delivery style.

I still believe that a well-structured, outlined speech will be helpful for anyone to follow.

I look forward to judging your debates!  Have fun!


Ryan Guy - MJC

UPDATED: 3/13/5/2021

Ryan Guy

Modesto Junior College

Video Recording:I always have a webcam or DSLR with me. If you would like me to record your round and send it to you, check with your opponent(s) first, then ask me. I'll only do it if both teams want it, and default to uploading files as unlisted YouTube links and only sharing them with you on my ballot (I'll leave a short URL that will work once I am done uploading... typically 4n6URL.com/XXXX). This way no one ever has to bug me about getting video files.

Online Tournaments:I can screen capture the debate if you all want a copy of it, but like live recording I'll only do it if both folks ask me to.


  • I was a NPDA debater at Humboldt State in the mid 2000s
  • I've coached Parli, NFA-LD, IPDA and a little bit of BP, and CEDA since 2008.
  • I teach courses in argumentation, debate, public speaking, etc 

The Basics:

  • In NFA-LD please post arguments you have run on the case list (https://nfald.paperlessdebate.com/)
  • Use speechdrop.net to share files in NFA-LD and Policy debate rounds
  • NOTE: If you are paper only you should have a copy for me and your opponent. Otherwise you will need to debate at a slower conversational pace so I can flow all your arguments. (I'm fine with faster evidence reading if I have a copy or you share it digitally).
  • I'm fine with the a little bit of speed in NFA-LD and Parli but keep it reasonable or I might miss something.
  • Procedurals / theory are fine but articulate the abuse
  • I prefer policy-making to K debate. You should probably not run most Ks in front of me.
  • I default to net-benefits criteria unless you tell me otherwise
  • Please tell me why you think you are winning in your last speech

General Approach to Judging:

I really enjoy good clash in the round. I like it when debaters directly engage with each other's arguments (with politeness and respect). From there you need to make your case to me. What arguments stand and what am I really voting on. If at the end of the round I'm looking at a mess of untouched abandoned arguments I'm going to be disappointed.

Organization is very important to me. Please road-map (OFF TIME) and tell me where you are going. I can deal with you bouncing around if necessary but please let me know where we are headed and where we are at. Unique tag-lines help too. As a rule I do not time road maps.

I like to see humor and wit in rounds. This does not mean you can/should be nasty or mean to each other. Avoid personal attacks unless there is clearly a spirit of joking goodwill surrounding them. If someone gets nasty with you, stay classy and trust me to punish them for it with speaks.

If the tournament prefers that we not give oral critiques before the ballot has been turned in I won't. If that is not the case I will as long as we are running on schedule. I'm always happy to discuss the round at some other time during the tournament.

Kritiques: I'm probably not the judge you want to run most K's in front of. In most formats of debate I don't think you can unpack the lit and discussion to do it well. If you wish to run Kritical arguments I'll attempt to evaluate them as fairly as I would any other argument in the round.I have not read every author out there and you should not assume anyone in the round has. Make sure you thoroughly explain your argument. Educate us as you debate. You should probably go slower with these types of positions as they may be new to me, and i'm very unlikely to comprehend a fast kritik.

I will also mention that I'm not a fan of this memorizing evidence / cards thing in parli. If you don't understand a critical / philosophical standpoint enough to explain it in your own words, then you might not want to run it in front of me.

Weighing: Please tell me why you are winning. Point to the impact level of the debate. Tell me where to look on my flow. I like overviews and clear voters in the rebuttals. The ink on my flow (or pixels if I'm in a laptop mood) is your evidence. Why did you debate better in this round? Do some impact calculus and show me why you won.

Speed: Keep it reasonable. In parli speed tends to be a mistake, but you can go a bit faster than conversational with me if you want. That being said; make sure you are clear, organized and are still making good persuasive arguments. If you cant do that and go fast, slow down. If someone calls clear ...please do so. If someone asks you to slow down please do so. Badly done speed can lead to me missing something on the flow. I'm pretty good if I'm on my laptop, but it is your bad if I miss it because you were going faster than you were effectively able to.

Online Tournaments: Speed and web based debate does not work?Ã??Ã?  Slow down or everyone will miss stuff.

Speed in NFA-LD: I get that there is the speed is antithetical to nfa-ld debate line in the bylaws. I also know that almost everyone ignores it. If you are speaking at a rate a trained debater and judge can comprehend I think you meet the spirit of the rule. If speed becomes a problem in the round just call clear or "slow." That said if you use "clear" or "slow" to be abusive and then go fast and unclear I might punish you in speaks. I'll also listen and vote on theory in regards to speed, but I will NEVER stop a round for speed reasons in any form of debate. If you think the other team should lose for going fast you will have to make that argument.

If you do not flash me the evidence or give me a printed copy, then you need to speak at a slow conversational rate, so I can confirm you are reading what is in the cards. If you want to read evidence a bit faster...send me you stuff. I'm happy to return it OR delete it at the end of the round, but I need it while you are debating.

Safety:I believe that debate is an important educational activity. I think it teaches folks to speak truth to power and trains folks to be good citizens and advocates for change. As a judge I never want to be a limiting factor on your speech. That said the classroom and state / federal laws put some requirements on us in terms of making sure that the educational space is safe. If I ever feel the physical well-being of the people in the round are being threatened, I am inclined to stop the round and bring it to the tournament director.


Files: I would like debaters to useÃ??Ã? www.speechdrop.netÃ??Ã? Ã??Ã? for file exchange. It is faster and eats up less prep. If for some reason that is not possible, I would like to be on the email chain:Ã??Ã? ryanguy@gmail.com. If there is not an email chain I would like the speech docs on a flashdrive before the speech. I tend to feel paper only debate hurts education and fairness in the round. I also worry it is ableist practice as some debaters struggle with text that can't be resized and searched. If you only use paper I would like a copy for the entire round so I may read along with you.?Ã??Ã? If you can't provide a copy of your evidence digitally or on paper, you will need to slow down and speak at a slow conversational pace so I can flow everything you say.

Disclosure:'m a fan of the caselist. I think it makes for good debate. If you are not breaking a brand new aff it better be up there. If it is not I am more likely to vote on "accessibility" and "predictably" standards in T. Here is the case-list as of 2019. Get your stuff on it:Ã??Ã? https://nfald.paperlessdebate.com/Ã??Ã? Ã??Ã? If your opponent is anti-case list you should run a wiki spec / disclosure theory against them. I think that teams who chose to not disclose their affirmatives are abusive to teams who do.

LD with no cards:Ã??Ã? Ã??Ã? It might not be a rule, but I think it is abusive and bad for LD debate. I might even vote on theory that articulates that.


Speaker Points:Other than a couple off the wall occurrences my range tends to fall in the 26-30 range. If you do the things in my General Approach to Judging section, your speaks will be higher.

Topicality:AFF, make an effort to be topical. I'm not super amused by squirrely cases. Ill vote on T in all its varieties. Just make sure you have all the components. I prefer articulated abuse, but will vote on potential abuse if you don't answer it well. I'm unlikely to vote on an RVI. In general I enjoy a good procedural debate but also love rounds were we get to talk about the issues. That said if you are going for a procedural argument...you should probably really go for it in the end or move on to your other arguments.


In IPDA I prefer that you signpost your arguments and follow a logical structure for advantages, disadvantages, contentions, Counter-contentions etc. If it is a policy resolution you should probably fiat a plan action and argue why implementing it would be net-beneficial. I think it is generally abusive for the affirmative to not FIAT a plan in the 1AC if it is a resolution of policy. Please note the official IPDA textbook says the following about resolutions of policy "With a policy resolution, the affirmative must specify a plan that they will advocate during the debate. The plan of action should consist of at least four elements: agent, mandates, enforcement, and funding." (pg 134)(2016). International Public Debate Association Textbook (1st edition). Kendall Hunt Publishing.)  

You get 30 minutes prep, you should cite sources and provide me with evidence. Arguments supported with evidence and good logic are more likely to get my ballot. I will vote on procedural arguments and other debate theory if it is run well in IPDA, but you should try to explain it a bit more conversationally than you would in other forms of debate. Try to use a little less jargon here. I flow IPDA just like I would any other form of debate. Please respond to each other and try not to drop arguments. A debate without clash is boring.

At its heart IPDA is a form of debate meant to be understood by non-debate audiences and skilled debater audiences alike.Argumentation still exists under this framework, but certain strategies like critical affirmatives, spreading, and complicated theory positions are probably better situated in other forms of debate.

Sarah Metivier Schadt - McHenry


Sasan Kasravi - DVC

TL;DR: I won't punish you for not debating the way I like, but I can't "hang". Speed and Ks not recommended, but I won't vote you down unless your opponent gives me a decent reason to. Give me direct and clear reasons to vote for you. Have fun in the round.

I'm a community college Parliamentary Debate coach.

I protect the flow in rebuttals based on what I have on my flow. Feel free to call points of order if you'd really like to, though.

I do my best to vote the way the debaters tell me to and to be tabula rasa. With that having been said, I think everyone has biases and I want to tell you mine. I won't ignore any of your arguments out of not liking them, but my biases could lower the threshold for refutation on an argument I dislike.

What I like to see most in debates is good clash. To me, good clash means link refutations and impact comparisons.

I'm comfortable with theory and you can run whatever procedural you'd like. I prefer to vote on articulated abuse rather than potential abuse. While I'm happy to vote on procedurals if it's called for, I've never walked out of a round thinking, "Wow! What a great T!"

I don't like K's. I've voted on them before, I'll probably end up having to vote for a K again, but I'm not happy about it. Specifically, I have a hard time buying solvency on the alternatives of most K's I've heard.

I prefer that you don't spread, but I can keep up with decent speed. I'll tell you to slow if I need you to slow down.

Please be inclusive of your opponents and (if there are other judges in this round) the other judges on the panel.

It's important to me that this activity:

a) be a useful experience for competitors' lives outside of forensics

b) be enjoyable enough to be worth giving up weekends instead of sleeping in and watching cartoons.

Lastly, if I make jokes please pretend to think I'm funny. I don't have much else going for me.

Scarlett Miller (3) - PRPJudge


Scott Plambek - SD Mesa


Scott Elliott - KCKCC

Selene Aguirre - Cerritos

As an educator, the core of my teaching and judging philosophy is empowerment and inclusion. My experiences are primarily focused on platform speaking. However, Iâ??ve taught Argumentation and Debate for the past four years and have developed a few preferences when judging IPDA, Parli, and LD. 

As a debater, I expect you to speak with clarity, a bit faster than a conversation speaking rate (but avoid speeding if the speech will be affected), and loud enough for me to hear you. I prefer off-time roadmaps for clarity, appreciate signposts throughout speeches, and praise respectfulness and good sports[person]ship. Also, I am a tabula rasa judge (consider myself a clean slate). I will allow you to guide the round and not let my preconceived ideas cloud my judgment. Therefore, I look for clear and well-supported arguments, evidence, and analysis, and lastly, let me know how you weigh your impacts and why your voters are more critical than your opponent. I will defer to evaluating the debate through an offense/defense paradigm if thereâ??s no way to assess it another way. Lastly, have fun and enjoy your time! 

Inclusion is not a matter of political correctness. It is the key to growth. -Jesse Jackson

Shannan Troxel-Andreas - Butte

I'm primarily an IE judge/coach but have been a DOF for the last several years. 

I don't always like debate - help me to like it by:

-Using clear roadmapping

-Speaking clearly and persuasively (Especially in IPDA - it's an act of persuasion, an art)

- Be respectful of your opponent and judges

-I love to see Neg do more than essentially saying no to all of the Aff

- Show me on the flow how you've won - convince me

Shawn O'Rourke - Saddleback


Shelomi (4) _ - PRPJudge


Steve Robertson - Contra Costa

Steve Robertson

Contra Costa College, Director of Forensics

Years competed:1 yr LD (high school), 4.5 years NDT/CEDIA (college)

Years coaching: 20+ years (middle school, high school, college - LD, parli, NDT/CEDA, IPDA)


Philosophy - The round is for you to convince me why your side should win the debate.  try to be as non-interventionist as I can be.  I work off the flow, focusing on your claims, warrants, and evidence. Believability is also a factor. I find it very difficult to vote for arguments that I don't understand how they work or function.  So be sure to explain why things are the way they are.  Compare impacts, and explain why your impacts/argument outweigh or should be viewed as more important than theirs. The main point is that you need to justify your position to me: what is your argument, why is it legitimate, and why does that matter in light of the other side's arguments.  If you can adequately answer those three questions better than the other side, you should win the argument.

I punish non-responsiveness - meaning that if you drop or undercover arguments, they suddenly get much more weight in the round (especially if exploited by the other team). However, if you under-develop your arguments (such as blipping out theory pre-empts without justifying them), it doesn't take much to respond to these arguments. 

I also communicate through nonverbals.  If you see me nodding, then that means I understand your position (not necessarily agree with it, but I get what you're saying).  If you see me cocking my head to the side or scrunching up my face, it means I don't get what you're saying or I don't understand your argument or I don't see why it's relevant.  If you see that face, you should either give more explanation (until you see a head nod) or cut your losses and move onto another argument.  If you see my hands in the air, that means I don't know where you are on the flow. You should give me a signpost, because I'm currently not flowing you.

Here are some event-specific concerns:

Parli - Debate starts at the highest point of conflict.  I will listen to arguments of trichot/type of resolution, though if the tournament identifies it as a particular type of resolution this becomes a bit more difficult. 

I don't care about partner to partner communication. However, if it's done during the other team's speech, then mute yourselves from this 8x8 (e.g., chat privately, mute yourselves and talk in another venue, etc.). Don't disrupt the other speaker.

If you want to give your partner advice or arguments, that's fine as well.  There are 2 things to be aware of: First, I only listen to what the speaker says. So if you tell your partner something, it doesn't reach my flow until the current speaker says it.  Saying "yeah, what she said" will get onto my flow as "yeah, what she said" - not the actual argument.  Second, the more you parrot or puppet your partner, the lower your speaker points will become.  This is purely subjective on my part, so use at your own peril.

Finally, parli has the Point of Order. I will not protect against new arguments or other rules violations (unless specified to do so in the tournament rules).  Use this if applicable.  Frivolous use of it, however, will desensitize me to it.

LD - You have the obligation to provide evidence in this debate.  Please do so.  Referencing evidence that has not been read in the debate will carry the same weight as an assertion for me.

For me, reading the source (publication title and/or authors' last names) and date is sufficient for citations, provided that all additional information is provided on the card's citation itself.  If you want to run an official rules violation on this in front of me, I will entertain it, but realize I am disinclined to vote evidence or a debater down in that information is available on the card. Doesn't mean you can't win it, just that it'll be an uphill battle.

Realize that while underlining and highlighting are acceptable ways of modifying evidence for a round, ellipses, unreadable font size, or gaps in text are unacceptable.

IPDA - IPDA is more of a communication event than a debate for me.  It is NOT treated the same as parli.  I do not flow, but take a very limited amount of notes.  Eloquence factors into the decision for me.  I think of this as a townhall meeting, closer to interactive persuasion than debate.  Avoid debate jargon, extensive line by line analysis, and other more traditional debate tactics.  This is about persuasion, not strict argumentation.  Think of debating in front of your grandmother, not a debate judge.


Bottom line - make good arguments, offer clash, give impact calculus/comparison, and be civil to one another.  Oh...and have fun!  :)

Steve Farias - Dark Horse


Taure Shimp - MJC

In IPDA, I hope to see clear contentions that include cited evidence and well-developed warrants. Debaters should utilize ethos/pathos/logos appeals throughout to demonstrate well-rounded speaking abilities. I expect IPDA debates to be accessible to lay audiences. This means maintaining a conversational rate of speech, avoiding unnecessary jargon, and presenting arguments that engage in a clear way with the resolution. Courtesy is of utmost importance. Always treat your opponent, audience members, and judges with respect.

Taylor Stickle - Saddleback


Thuy Pham - Mt. SAC


Tim Anderson - ECC

I am not a debate judge, and when I do judge debate, it is usually IPDA. Because IPDA is "public debate", someone with no debate experience should be able to take part and someone with no judging experience should be able to decide the winner.

I believe that the use of jargon and debate procedurals should be non-existent. While I have limited debate experience from my time competing and coaching, trying to win a round by trying to prove "my opponent didn't do blah blah so I win" won't win me over. I don't flow your arguments...if they are clear, I should be able to follow. Overall, I want IPDA to be more like a back-and-forth two person extemp, as opposed to one side trying to prove why the other chose the wrong weighing mechanism, an incorrect definition, etc. Don't tell me how I need to vote a round (i.e., "my opponent didn't do x, so you HAVE TO give the round to the affirmative"...No...I don't. The final choice is mine to make, so present your best cases and let me make the final ballot.

Also, I don't like thank you's at the beginning of rounds. They end up sounding sarcastic. And, don't refer to your opponent as "my opponent". They have a name that is part of their identity...call them that.

I take these same ideas with me when judging any form of debate.

Tom Gay - Tallahassee


Trent Webb - NCC


Wade Hescht - LSC-NH


William Murphy - MDC


Xavi Torres - PCC

I did mostly interp when I competed but have been trained in debate jargon and coaching novices in the activity. �??�?� For the most part, consider me a layperson for all forms of debate and adjust accordingly.