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Sophie Hathaway ’18 Wins After-Dinner Speaking at Kingswood Oxford

Sophie Hathaway ’18 took first place as an individual competitor in after-dinner speaking, and Stoneleigh-Burnham School placed second as a team in the 2016 Debate and Public Speaking Tournament at the Kingswood Oxford School on Sunday, February 7 in West Hartford, CT.

In addition, Julia Thayer finished third in ethical dilemmas, and Victoria Subritzky-Katz finished second in after-dinner speaking. Speakers competed in four rounds for four hours.

Dr. Paul Bassett, head coach of the SBS Debate and Public Speaking Society, said he decided to bring a team of junior speakers as a way to groom them for future competitions. The Stoneleigh-Burnham team included eleventh graders Ciara Hudson and Victoria Subritzky-Katz,  tenth graders Erin Hudson, Sophie Hathaway, and Julia Thayer, and eighth grader Lila Lofving.

Other schools competing were the Roxbury Latin School, Kingswood Oxford, The Governor’s Academy, Phillips Exeter Academy, and Choate Rosemary Hall.

SBS also brought Debate and Public Speaking Society member Claire Lane ’16 to help judge the competition.

Last year, Claire traveled to Hong Kong to compete on the U.S. team in the World Debating and Public Speaking Championship. Read about it here. This year, for the first time in the school’s 150-year history, SBS has two speakers who have earned spots on the U.S. team at the world competition. Claire and Clara Swartzentruber ’16 will head to Worlds in March 2016. Read more about it here.

Some members of the SBS Debate and Public Speaking Society got their start at one of our signature summer programs, A Voice of Her Own Debate and Public Speaking Camp. For more information about this or other summer programs at SBS, click here.