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Otterbein Student Debate Team

Upcoming Debate Team Events

Coming soon!

2010-2011 Debate Results

Western Kentucky, September 24-26th
Ariel Pepper – Novice
Manal Farah – Open (6th Speaker)

McKendree University, October 15-17th
Ariel Pepper – Quarterfinalist, 2nd Speaker
Manal Farah – Quarterfinalist, 1st Speaker

Marshall University, October 28th-30th
Manal Farah – Semi-Finalist, 5th Speaker

Central Missouri, Mule, November 6th-7th
Manal Farah - 2nd Speaker

Ohio State University, the Frolic, December 3-4th
Ariel Pepper
Manal Farah

Miami of Ohio’s Tournament, January 15-16th 2011
Ariel Pepper – Semi-finalist, 2nd Speaker
Attending: Liz Berry, Holly Takach, Cat Clarke, Kiersten, Manal Farah

Webster University Gorlok Gala, January 29TH-30th
JV: Holly Takach 3-3, 10TH Speaker
Open: Manal Farah, Octafinalist, 7th Speaker

Suffolk University, February, 5-6th
Liz Berry
Manal Farah, Quarterfinalist, 7th Speaker

The State Tournament of Ohio, February 18-19th
Ariel Pepper – Tournament Champion, Top Speaker
Liz Berry
Holly Takach – 5th Speaker
Top LD Team

Marist College – Fox Nation Tournament, March 5-6, 2011
Holly Takach – Semi-Finalist
Manal Farah – Quarter-Finalist, 5th Speaker
3rd Place Sweepstakes Award

Nationals: Holly Takach – Double Octafinalist


  • 1880 – The Otterbein Home Oratorical association was formed for the purpose of selecting contestants to participate in the Ohio Oratorical association Contest, and by 1883 the name was changed to the Otterbein Oratorical association.
  • 1898 - Otterbein participated in the school’s first intercollegiate debate with Denison University.
  • 1901 - Argumentation and Debate was first offered for academic credit at Otterbein.
  • 1903 – The Otterbein Debating Association was formed (Debating was so popular that admission was charged, songs and cheers performed and the Otterbein Victory Bell was frequently tolled).
  • 1910 – Dr. Howard Hyde Russell, founder of the Anti-saloon League of America, provided the first monetary prizes ever offered by the college when he established the Howard H. Russell Oratorical and Declamation Contests. The contests are still held each spring.
  • 1911 – Members of the debating teams and college orators were awarded a college letter for the first time, by the new Oratory “O” Association.
  • 1912 – One of the first girl’s inter-collegiate debate teams in the country was organized at Otterbein when students arranged a triangle debate with Muskingum and Ohio University. Interest in debate under Fred Bale ran so high in 1912 that a season ticket was sold for home debates (male and female) and advertisements were sold in programs.
  • 1914 - Mt Union, Ohio Northern, Wittenberg, and Muskingum met at Otterbein to form the Central Ohio Intercollegiate Debate League.
  • 1920 – Mr. James O. Cox of the class of 1911 established the Cox Debate Prize and since that time has provided for its continuation through the Cox Foundation.
  • 1922 – A course in Dramatic Interpretation was added to the catalogue.
  • 1923 – Horace W. troop of the class of 1923 won the State oratorical Contest in that year. Otterbein then hosted the Eastern Interstate Contest and he was one of three winners selected for the national contest to become Otterbein’s first participant in a national contest. Mr. Troop placed fourth in the national meet.
  • 1924 - Pi Kappa Delta National Forensic Fraternity was installed as Otterbein’s first national honorary.
  • 1927 – Theta Alpha Phi National Honorary Dramatics Fraternity was installed.
  • 1940 – Pi Kappa delta teams from Otterbein received the rating of Excellent at the National Convention (Only 9 colleges received this high rating).
  • 1946 – The first annual Holiday Debate Tournament was held at Otterbein with teams from 16 colleges and universities participating (We continue to host this tournament annually).
  • 1959 – The Capital University-Otterbein College traditional rivalry resulted in the first annual Cap-Otter Silver Cup Debate.
  • 1961 – Nancy J. Myers won the Pi Kappa Delta National Women’s Oratory Championship in her senior year.
  • 1962 – Otterbein students won the Ohio Women’s Sweepstakes Award for winning more events in debate, oratory, oral interpretation and extemporaneous speaking than any other Ohio Institution.
  • 1964 – Freshman Robert J. Sutter became the first Otterbein student to win the National Peace Oratory Contest. 
  • 1966 – Sophomore Greg Sabatino won first place in the Interstate Oratorical Association’s National Championship in men’s original oratory.
  • 1997 – John Boyer is an Octa-finalist at the National Forensic Association’s National Tournament
  • 1998 – John Boyer is an Octa-finalist at the National Forensic Association’s National Tournament
  • 1999 – John Boyer is a Double Octa-finalist at the National Forensic Association’s National Tournament.
  • 2000 – John Boyer is a Double Octa-finalist at the National Forensic Association’s National Tournament.
  • 2004 – Sean Hayes wins the Varsity State Tournament in Lincoln-Douglas Debate and qualifies for the National Forensic Association’s National Tournament.
  • 2005 - David Root – Pi Kappa Delta National Champion in JV Lincoln Douglas Debate.
  • 2006 – Otterbein sends three students to the National Forensic Association’s National Tournament, in Lincoln-Douglas debate, Places Tenth at Nationals
  • 2007 – Otterbein has five students compete in Lincoln-Douglas debate at the National Forensic Association’s National Tournament. The team places 11th.
  • 2009 – Junior Fahmiya Ismail is an Octa-finalist at the National Forensic Association’s National Tournament, finishing in the top sixteen Lincoln-Douglas debaters in the nation and the team finishes in the top ten in the nation.
  • 2010 – Otterbein has two students qualify for Double-Octafinals (Senior Jessica Hansen and Sophomore Manal Farah), the team places 10th .
  • 2011 – Sophomore Ariel Pepper loses no debates on her way to winning the Varsity State Championship in the state of Ohio. She is also Top Speaker.
  • 2011 – Freshman Holly Takach is a Double Octa-finalist at the National Forensic Association’s National Tournament.

/ Department of Communication

Diane Wootton
Administrative Assistant
33 Collegeview Rd., C110
p/ 614.823.3380
e/ dwootton@otterbein.edu

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