High school senior and Orinda resident Mollie Fiero finished as Fifth Speaker out of 404 competitors at the National Speech and Debate Association’s National Championship Tournament in Kansas City last week.
Mollie, who began debating in seventh grade under the tutelage of Orinda Intermediate School teacher Terry Eubanks, debated for The College Preparatory School in Oakland, which fields a team focused on policy debate.
Policy is the style of debate practiced at the university level. It is research intensive, and features two-person teams that argue both sides of a single topic for the entire academic year, half the time for the affirmative; the other half for the negative.
This year’s topic was “Resolved: The United States federal government should substantially increase its economic engagement toward Cuba, Mexico or Venezuela.”
Last year as a junior, Mollie earned a Ninth Speaker award at the same year-end tournament.
This year’s Fifth Speaker award can serve as a bookend to her fifth place finish at this year’s Tournament of Champions in Lexington, Kentucky in April.
Mollie enthused, “Fifth overall at the two most competitive national tournaments of the year? That’s a great senior season. I’m excited to move on to college debate.”
Mollie will enroll as a freshman at Emory University in the fall, where the debate team has won several national championships in the past.