Pictured from left to right: Speech and debate teacher Andrew Barrett, Nancy Udunka, quarter finalist; Ariana Okhuozagbon; Iyesogie Ogbonmwan, quarter finalist, eighth place duo interpretation; Destiny Williams, quarter finalist, eighth place duo interpretation; Rebecca Robertson, quarter finalist; Danielle Jones, quarter finalist; Monica Watson, regional qualifier in prose; Jaylon Bolden, state champion in dramatic interpretation; Dimitri Brooks, quarter finalist; Juan Saucedo, regional qualifier in poetry; Lillian Spigner; and speech and debate teacher John Augillard.
The Pasadena ISD Board of Trustees recognized the Dobie High speech and debate team at the May board meeting for earning high marks in the state and national competitions this year.
The team earned the most national qualifiers in the state, under speech and debate teachers Andrew Barrett and John Augillard.
“I would like to thank you for the opportunity to compete on a national level,” Barrett said. “Without your support our success would not have been possible.”
Jaylon Bolden, senior at Dobie, was crowned state champion in dramatic interpretation this year and placed fifth overall at the National Tournament of Champions quarterfinals in original oratory. He earned the highest ranking in the country at Harvard University.
In addition to winning state and multiple national awards, Bolden is also an all-district football player, maintains a 3.7 grade point average and has been offered a full scholarship to Wiley College. The film The Great Debaters is based on Wiley.
The Tournament of Champions is considered one of the most prestigious high school speech and debate competitions in the country. The top competitors gather each year to put their talents on display for a chance to be named champion.
Jaylon Bolden is recognized for being named state champion in dramatic interpretation.