Drury debate team repeats strong finish at national tournament, placing 2nd in overall season rankings

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., April 13, 2018 —For the second year in a row, the top speaker in the International Public Debate Association National Tournament is from Drury University. In only its second year with IPDA, members of the Drury Debate Union once again made outstanding finishes, both individually and as a group.

Debate has been a tradition at Drury since the 1800s, but the program returned from a hiatus last season and immediately reached the top of IPDA rankings and winning the national title.

The team continued to build on that success this season, culminating at the IPDA National Championship in Seattle last month. Sophomore Lindsay Duede became the second member of the Drury squad to win the top speaker award, winning first place in the individual debate competition that included 76 varsity debaters from 25 states representing 35 universities. Duede was also part of a two-person team that took second place in the national team sweepstakes competition, alongside Jerry McCauley. After earning the national tittle last year, Drury earned second place in the season-long team standings as a squad. 

Final results for Drury from the IPDA National Championship include:

  • Lindsay Duede – 1st place varsity speaker
  • Lindsay Duede and Jerry McCauley – 2nd place in team sweepstakes competition
  • Emily Collier and Ayesha Naqi – 5th place in team sweepstakes competition
  • Jerrica Shrine and Mallory Pinson – 5th place in team season-long standings
  • Drury University – 2nd place in season-long national standings

“We had a phenomenal year and look forward to another one next year,” says Dr. Charles Deberry, the Debate Union coach. “We will not lose any debaters to graduation, and we have recruited five really talented individuals to add to the squad for next year.” 

Formed in 1997, the International Public Debate Association emphasizes critical thinking, civil discourse, logic, creativity, and real-world persuasion skills. The growing league has more than 120-member colleges in 28 states from coast to coast.


Contact: Dr. Charles DeBerry, Debate Union Coach - (417) 873-6835 or

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