RUDU 2013 E-Board (archive)

The 2013 Executive Board of the Rutgers University Debate Union

ANovak13Ashley Novak is the President of the Debate Union. A rising senior majoring in African, Middle Eastern, and Southeast Asian Languages and Literature (AMESALL), Novak joined RUDU in 2010. She finished last season as the 18th-ranked Speaker of the Year (SOTY), one of the highest-ranked women in the league. She broke twelve times in 2012-2013, including a RUDU-record 9th place finish at the National Championships with Chris Bergman. She also finished as fourth speaker at the 2013 North American Championships. Ashley will tell you more about her personal life than you would like to know. She is planning on being a professional translator after her time at Rutgers.

ABomeisl13Adam Bomeisl is the Vice President of the Debate Union. A rising senior majoring in History, Bomeisl joined the Union in 2010. He finished 16th TOTY last season with regular partner Russell Potter, breaking seven times that year and qualifying for Nationals. His tournament win at Vassar was RUDU’s first in two years. Adam has never ever been the slightest bit sarcastic. After graduating, he is looking to attend law school.

QMaingi13Quinn Maingi is the Treasurer of the Debate Union. A rising junior majoring in Economics, Maingi started debating for Rutgers in 2011. After winning 3rd Novice of the Year (NOTY) his first season, he broke nine times last year and qualified for Nationals, placing in the top twenty-five with Alex Jubb. He is only the second RUDU debater to both win a tournament and a top speaker award, the first to do both in the same season. Quinn can only see the top of your head. He is hoping to work for the Fed after Rutgers.

RMoon13Rachel Moon is the Public Relations Chair of the Debate Union. A rising junior in the School of Arts and Sciences, Moon joined RUDU in 2012. She competed in nearly every tournament last season, making several bubble rounds and nearly earning a spot to attend Nationals. A devoted foodie, all Rachel ever wanted was spaghetti. She is currently undecided on her career plans after college.

DJanardhan13Deepta Janardhan is the Novice Mentor of RUDU. A rising senior majoring in Economics and Political Science, Janardhan joined RUDU in 2011. She broke for the first time last season, having made several bubble rounds previously with regular partner Henry Phipps. She also served as the 2013 Tournament Director of the annual Rutgers Invitational.Much debate is ongoing within the club about whether or not she is lanky. Deepta is planning on attending law school after undergrad.

GMorrisetteGordon Morrisette is the Alumni Coordinator of the Debate Union. A rising fifth-year senior majoring in History and Political Science, Morrisette started debating for RUDU in 2009. After just missing top ten NOTY his first full year and taking a year abroad in Scotland the next year, he broke five times last season and fell just a half-point shy of qualifying for Nationals, though he still represented Rutgers there. Gordon will almost never be found either clean-shaven or with a full beard. He is still deciding his path after graduation.


The 2014 Event Director of the Rutgers University Debate Union

AJubbAlex Jubb is the Tournament Director of the 2014 Rutgers Invitational, to be held next February in New Brunswick. A rising senior majoring in Urban Planning and Public Policy, Jubb joined RUDU in 2011. She broke four times last season, making two final rounds and winning the Albany tournament with Quinn Maingi. She and Quinn also finished 23rd at the 2013 National Championships. Alex is the shortest Tournament Director in Rutgers history. She is undecided on her future after her studies at Rutgers.


The 2013 Coaching Staff of the Rutgers University Debate Union

SClayton13Storey Clayton is the Coach of the Debate Union. A graduate of Brandeis University in 2002, Clayton began coaching at Rutgers in 2009. During his APDA career, he won the North American Championship (2001), was the 2nd ranked speaker (2002), part of the 3rd Team at the National Championships (2001), 3rd ranked novice (1999), and part of the 5th ranked team (2000). Prior to coaching debate, he worked in non-profits in the Bay Area, including the Seneca Center for Children and Families and the Glide Foundation. Since his arrival at Rutgers, the team as a whole has gone from unranked in the prior eight years to 24th in 2010, 5th in 2011, 9th in 2012, and a record-high 3rd in 2013. Storey is currently coaching full-time and writing novels on the side, one of which was published in 2003 and two more of which have been completed in the last two years. He gets a haircut at least once every half-decade.

CBaia13Chris Baia is the Assistant Coach of the Debate Union. A graduate of Johns Hopkins University in 2008, Baia started coaching in 2012. During his APDA career, he was President of the league (2008), 2nd ranked speaker (2008), on the 6th ranked team twice (2007, 2008), 8th ranked novice (2005), and finished 12th at Nationals (2008). Prior to his arrival at Rutgers, Baia coached the Collegiate High School team in New York and earned his Juris Doctor at American University. He was recently admitted to the New Jersey State Bar Association and became engaged to his long-time girlfriend, also a former APDA debater. RUDU finished 3rd-ranked in the nation during his first year as an Assistant Coach. He is the third Chris B. to participate in RUDU, but a fourth has since joined.


If you would like to hold the E-Board accountable to their campaign promises, you can compare them here.

Past E-Board Descriptions for this page:
2012
Fall 2011
2010-2011


Past Officers of the Rutgers University Debate Union

2012
President: Chris Bergman ’13
Vice President: Bhargavi Sriram ’13
Treasurer: Ashley Novak ’14
Public Relations Chair: Henry Phipps ’14
Novice Mentor: Kurt Falk ’15
Alumni Coordinator: Alex Jubb ’14
Tournament Directors: Adam Bomeisl ’14 & Bhargavi Sriram ’13
Coach: Storey Clayton, Brandeis ’02
Assistant Coach (Fall): Chris Baia, Johns Hopkins ’08

Fall 2011
President: Chris Bergman ’13
Vice President: Nisha Kumar ’13
Treasurer: Ashley Novak ’14
Public Relations Chair: Stephen Yellin ’13
Coach: Storey Clayton, Brandeis ’02

2010-2011
President: David Reiss ’11
Vice President: Farhan Ali ’11
Treasurer: Kyle Bomeisl ’11
Public Relations: Krishna Kavi ’12
Tournament Director: Christopher Bergman ’13
Webmaster: Gordon Morrisette ’13
Coach: Storey Clayton, Brandeis ’02

2009-2010
President: Eric Knecht ’10
Vice President of Operations: Barbara Silber ’10
Treasurer: Brian Canares ’11
Novice Coach: Eisha Chopra ’10
Secretary: Lorraine Belostock ’10
Public Relations: Kyle Bomeisl ’11
Tournament Director: David Reiss ’11
Webmaster: Roy Antoun ’10
Coach: Storey Clayton, Brandeis ’02

2008-2009
President: Eric Knecht ’10
Vice President – Executive: Barbara Silber ’10
Vice President – Finance: Lorenzo Calinawan ’10
Novice Coach: Eisha Chopra ’10
Tournament Director: Akbar Ahsan ’10
Chief Technology Officer: Kyle Bomeisl ’11

2007-2008
President: Sam Zeidman ’08
Executive Vice President: Eisha Chopra ’10
Vice President of Finance: Lorenzo Calinawan ’10
Novice Coach: Simon Burger ’08
Tournament Director: Ed Fu ’08
Chief Technology Officer: Ed Fu ’08

2006-2007
President: Sam Zeidman ’08
VP: Rebekah Lee ’07
VP Finance: Dan Ahn ’07
Varsity Coach: Prashant Iyer ’07
Novice Coach: Carl Kunda ’07
Tournament Director: Ed Fu ’08
PR Officer: Cindy Huang ’08
Chief Technology Officer: Ed Fu ’08

2005-2006
President: Carl Kunda ’07
Executive VP: Dan Ahn ’07
VP Finance: Prashant Iyer ’07
Novice Coach: Ross Mazer ’06
VP Operations: Ryan Gogol ’06
Tournament Director: Rebekah Lee ’07
Community Debate Director: Meredithe McNamara ’07
Chief Technology Officer: William Mon ’06

2004-2005
President: Ross Mazer ’06
Executive VP: Carl Kunda ’07
VP Finance: Dan Ahn ’07
VP External Relations: Zack Matusheski ’06
VP Operations: Rebekah Lee ’07
Chief Technical Officer: William Mon ’06

2003-2004
President: Ross Mazer ’06
Vice President: Dan Ahn ’07
Treasurer: Zack Matusheski ’06
PR Officer: Joy Kwon ’04
Secretary: Ryan Gogol ’06
IT Officer: William Mon ’06

2002-2003
President: Ross Mazer ’06
Vice President: Danielle Cirelli ’06
Treasurer: Carl Kunda ’07
Secretary: Joy Kwon ’04
PR Officer: Zack Matusheski ’06
IT Officer: Marat Denenberg ’03

2001-2002
President: Samuel Kim ’03
Vice President: Peter Choi ’03
Treasurer/PR Officer: Evan Luce ’03
IT Officer: Marat Denenberg ’03
Member at Large: Ross Mazer ’06


This post was written on February 25, 2014, to archive the information on the outgoing 2013 Executive Board, and listed as being posted on January 1, 2014, for posterity.

Deepta Janardhan Elected Novice Mentor

Deepta Janardhan, pictured here at the NorthAms 2013 banquet, was already preparing novice training sessions and ways to grow the team.
Deepta Janardhan at the NorthAms 2013 banquet, was already preparing novice training sessions and ways to grow the team.

Deepta Janardhan, Tournament Director for the 2013 Rutgers Invitational, was elected as 2013 Novice Mentor Tuesday night after a brief five-person election that included a run-off between the top two candidates. Janardhan was elected to replace Kurt Falk, who served the position with an example that all candidates stated they would like to follow. She restores gender parity to the Rutgers University Debate Union (RUDU) Executive Board as the third woman to join the six-person Board.

The Novice Mentor of RUDU works with the Coaches to recruit new members to the team, help train them, and make them feel welcome within the ever growing club. The position was established in 2012 after the Novice Coach position had been eliminated when Storey Clayton first started coaching the team in the 2009-2010 season. As RUDU began to grow massively in 2010 and 2011, the team felt it necessary to assign a member of the team the responsibility for ensuring support of novices.

“This year I see a novice class that shows a lot of potential,” she noted in her candidate statement.

Candidate Statements for Special Election for Novice Mentor

A Special Election for 2013 Novice Mentor will be held on Tuesday, January 29th at 9:00 PM in Murray 210, at the outset of that day’s meeting. The position was made vacant by the resignation of Kurt Falk, who is taking a semester off from Rutgers.

A file photo of Kurt Falk preparing to mentor novices at a tournament.
A file photo of Kurt Falk preparing to mentor novices at a tournament.

There are five candidates for the position and their statements are listed below in alphabetical order:
Arbi Llaveshi
Deepta Janardhan
Henry Phipps
Russell Potter
Sean Leonard


Arbi Llaveshi
Hey guys, I didn’t have time to write a candidate statement. If you’d like you can look to my previous statement for vp to learn why I’m a generally cool guy. I just learned the deadline for novice mentor application was tuesday night during the first meeting of the year DURING THE FIRST MEETING OF THE YEAR. I’ll answer your cool questions during election night.
– Arbs.


Deepta Janardhan
Hi everyone, Deepta here. I am running to fill in for the position of Novice Mentor for the 2013-2014 term. I think the main reason why you should vote for me, out of all of those running, is because of my philosophy on the novice mentor position. I believe that it exists largely to integrate the people who are newest at debate, into our team as a whole. In order to do this, a good novice mentor would need to be approachable, patient, and proactive- all qualities which I possess.

I have spent a good deal of time getting to know the novices on our team this year. During meetings, I always offered to stay back to judge rounds during weeks when I wouldn’t be participating in a tournament. During tournaments, I ask them how their rounds are going, and if they had difficulty, give them ideas about how to overcome the challenge. Even while giving advice, however, I always try to do this in a manner as to not shut down their own ideas, but just to jog their brains and make them think about things that they hadn’t considered before.

As Novice Mentor, I would be willing to extend all of these things which I already do, to a far greater extent, by constantly looking out for things that the novices are having trouble with, or reasons that they may be getting discouraged. I would then take active steps to try and solve the problem, by bringing it up during e-board meetings, or holding special sessions with Storey and Baia if the issue is more skills-based.

This year I see a novice class that shows a lot of potential. If elected, I promise that I will do my very best to try and bring it out even further.


Henry Phipps
Hey RUDU, I’m running to be your Novice Mentor. I believe I will do an excellent job as your Novice Mentor, not to mention having fun doing it. I’d like to briefly go over why you should vote for me for your new Novice Mentor.

I think Kurt did a really great job outlining the roles and responsibilities of the Novice Mentor role. The Novice Mentor is meant to help (primarily) novices on the team become more acquainted with the style of debate we compete in. Beyond this, the Novice Mentor also helps incorporate new team members as part of the team, not just in a debate format sense, but a social sense as well. Having someone as a liaison when you’re becoming just acquainted with a new large group (especially as one as large, tight, and wacky as all of us) is incredibly vital in order to ensure their enjoyment of the activity. Furthermore, the Novice Mentor is also in charge of organizing high school visits and novice retreats. These events are important in garnering interest from the beginning, in order to ensure a strong team in the next year.

It would be a true honor to be elected as your Novice Mentor. First of all, I truly enjoy connecting with people and getting to know them. I quickly introduce myself to new people on the team and do it out of the enjoyment of meeting someone new. Not only that, but as someone who is well connected with APDA, I cannot only introduce new people to our team, but make them feel more acquainted with other teams as well. While Kurt was Novice Mentor, I was quick to volunteer myself with brief info sessions concurrent to meetings when there were a large number of people new at that meeting. Furthermore, I would also help Kurt with Pro-Am practice rounds to help these novices get a crash course in debate.

Bringing back Novice Workshops is also a priority. Having a time and place where Novices can work on a specific part of debate is important in helping with the confidence of any debater. Kurt started these last year before Swat novice, and I think we should bring these back with more consistency, and not just for the novices. Many teams have consistent case writing sessions, and it would be good to create these team bonding experiences in order to strengthen the confidence of both Novices and Varsity. Finally, events such as high school visits and novice retreats are necessary. One of the first things I did after I got to New Jersey (despite the many protests from Rachel) was make as much as the last Novice Retreat as I could. I think contacting more high schools, and making novice retreats more accessible are important for long term expansion.

At the end of the day, you probably have a tough choice ahead of you with many people with good ideas. Because of all the reasons stated before though, I believe voting for me for Novice Mentor is the right decision, for I would be more than happy to be that liaison that’s so important for our team.

Thank you.


Russell Potter
Hi everyone! Russell here, and I’m running for Novice Mentor of RUDU!

This position’s predecessor, Kurt, was a trailblazer, under whose guidance; RUDU had many successes. Having observed his formula for success, I too think that I possess many traits, which make me your ideal candidate. To these ends, I have three points as to why you should vote for me.

1. Dedication – I think that this was one of Kurt’s biggest strongpoints, in that I’ve never met someone else so dedicated to the success and establishment of camaraderie among the team. I like to think that I too embody this characteristic. I’ve made it a policy of attending nearly every tournament, meeting, and doing practice rounds every available night. I’ve been highly successful and demonstrated a marked improvement from my novice year, which has inspired me to look back on what made me successful as a debater. If something needs to be done, I always make sure I’m there serving the team, helping it achieve. I’ve volunteered to organize debates, participate in demo rounds, and am willing to offer anything, even something as small as an ear to listen, to my fellow teammates.

2. Responsibility – This is one of my best attributes, and where I think that I can demonstrate my ability to work as hard as Kurt, if not harder. As a student who balances a 3.83 GPA, responsibility and organization are crucial to my life. I’ve begun to take upon an increasing amount of responsibility to assist the team as a whole. A prime example is with the planning for our summer debate camp, where a lack of performance by certain team members threatened our deadline. When I found out about the issue, I took it to create an entire content schedule for the camp, breaking down core issues of how to teach debate, and leaving time for scheduled events. Having a sense of responsibility and understanding of how to breakdown content so that it is both entertaining and understandable is an area where I thrive. The majority of the job of Novice Mentor would be to adapt programs and exercises to working with novices and help to ensure that our novice classes can reach new heights.

3. Goals – This is something that any good candidate needs to show, and is a hallmark for why Kurt was such an excellent Novice Mentor. To these ends, I have three areas, where I would work to improve if elected.

– Novice Events: One of the greatest things that we did as a team was the facilitation of novice exercises and scrimmages with other schools. I think they are uniquely beneficial to novices who feel like they lack direction in competitive events. I believe we should organize more of these and work towards addressing areas where novices feel lost. I also think, that as someone who was fortunate enough to Pro-Am with an experienced varsity member during my novice year, that I uniquely see the benefits of working across skill levels, and would seek to promote more Pro-Am experiences.

– Inter-School Relations: One of my best experiences in debate was participating in the demo rounds in Point Pleasant high school. I know that Kurt’s dream was to set up a funneling program between high school and college to recruit future debaters, and I too would seek to pursue such a program to make our team as great as possible. Further, I think that we ought foster communications with our local schools, like TCNJ, and rekindle scrimmage programs between them. This could be especially beneficial to novices, who get experience in debating against more varsity members while also practicing in the comfort of their own school.

– Novice Feedback Program: Lastly is an idea I had recently, which is to establish a feedback program in some capacity in order to get feedback on areas of improvement, so we can become more successful in our debate career, and also in the retention of our novices, who are our literal future.

Kurt left large shoes to fill, as he truly made a difference on the team for the better. I too would like a chance to make equally great strides for our team and make our future bright. I’m not saying that I would ever be able to replace Kurt, as I don’t think any of us can, but I think that based on his successes and my skillset, that I am suited to work for this team as its next Novice Mentor.


Sean Leonard
The office of Novice Mentor requires a select set of attributes in order to fulfil it’s entire responsibility. This responsibility is not one to be taken lightly, as it arguably determines the success of the entire team, even if that success manifests a year or two after the actions of the office itself. To be an effective Novice Mentor, you have to adequately balance training, recruitment, and retention of new people. If any of these factors are neglected, then the team, as a whole, will suffer as a result. Understanding this, I, Sean Leonard, would like to declare my intent to seek the position of Novice Mentor, promising to fulfill the three attributes of being a novice mentor to the best of my ability.

As a novice myself, I have a unique perspective of recently joining debate, with the memory of my first tournament, or even my first round, still highly prominent in my mind. This not only allows me to relate to the people I would be helping in a beneficial way, but also be able to pinpoint certain issues that I remember going through in the beginning. In addition to this, although my total time in Debate has been short, my participation has been the maximum I could possibly muster. I’ve been able to participate in every tournament, the novice retreats, while only missing one meeting the entire semester. From the practice rounds at the debate house, to participating in the debate class, to volunteering in the debate team public recruitment opportunities, I’ve done my best to participate 100% in the club, and that same work ethic will be replicated if I’m elected here.

Considering there are three main attributes of a good Novice Mentor, I’d like to talk a bit about why I can easily fulfill and excell at each of them. Firstly, I am obviously more than capable at training novices in the basic rules of debate. There have been multiple times where I had to help out other novices or partners with learning, or casing, or whatever was required at the time. Due to the fact I’ve been working alongside novices the entire semester, I’ve acquired some valuable experience. However, I must admit that there is much I still do not know about Debate. Whatever short falls that I have in that capacity will be made up by the wealth of experience held by the remainder of the team. Obviously, the role of the novice mentor is not to teach everything, but rather, to facilitate basic understanding.

Secondly, the recruitment of new novices is highly important to team efficiency. I feel as though our current recruitment methods are more than adequate for the needs of the team as it stands now. Through a combination of the novice retreats, standard recruitment at activity fairs, as well as a little bit of press regarding our accomplishments, we can achieve the steady flow of people required to support the team in the long term.

Finally, retention of new recruits is arguably as important as the recruitment of them in the first place. Retention, in my opinion, is the area where the most potential good can be done. The reality is, a lot of people simply cannot be swayed to join debate, or even in some cases, try it out. Call in fear of public speaking, or simple disinterest, but we’ve all met the person who simply won’t entertain the idea of joining. Therefore, we need to focus highly on the people who show interest in the start, and try to facilitate a common image that incorporates them, and puts them in a position where they want to succeed. Having a novice mentor who is a novice themselves probably contributes to this, but additional measures are obviously required to ensure that more people stay on, ensuring a high overall skill level of the team itself.

In summation, I pledge to show the same amount of activity as Novice Mentor as I portrayed as a simple novice.

RUDU Elects 2013 Executive Board

The newly elected RUDU EBoard in individual shots.
The newly elected RUDU EBoard in individual shots. Left to right: President Ashley Novak, Vice President Adam Bomeisl, Treasurer Quinn Maingi, Public Relations Chair Rachel Moon, Novice Mentor Kurt Falk, and Alumni Coordinator Gordon Morrisette.

The Rutgers University Debate Union (RUDU) took time out of practicing debating long enough to elect six officers to comprise the 2013 Executive Board on Tuesday night. Five of the six elections were contested in the three-hour meeting. The 2012 E-Board presided over one of the most successful years of Rutgers debate, capped by the second most successful semester in team history (just ended), in which the Union rose to 4th in the nation.

Junior Ashley Novak won the position of President without opposition after spending two terms as RUDU’s Treasurer. Junior Adam Bomeisl won the hotly contested position of Vice President after serving as the 2012 Co-Tournament Director. Sophomore Quinn Maingi joined the E-Board for the first time after being elected Treasurer. Sophomore Rachel Moon also debuted on the E-Board, winning Public Relations Chair. Sophomore Kurt Falk was re-elected to the position of Novice Mentor. And fourth-year junior Gordon Morrisette was elected Alumni Coordinator, having previously served as Webmaster in 2010-2011 before going abroad.

RUDU stands fourth in the American Parliamentary Debate Association (APDA) rankings at the end of the fall semester, just behind Harvard and just ahead of Johns Hopkins. The highest year-end finish for the club is fifth, in 2010-2011. While the E-Board officially begins its duties in January, transitional meetings will be held this month to acclimate the new Board to their tasks and the ongoing projects of the Board.

The information on the outgoing 2012 is archived below:


The 2012 Executive Board of the Rutgers University Debate Union

Chris Bergman is the President of the Debate Union. A rising senior majoring in Economics, Bergman joined RUDU in 2009. He finished 2011-2012 as the 23rd ranked speaker on APDA and part of the 22nd ranked team with regular partner Ashley Novak. He broke nine times last year, qualifying for Nationals, and earned Rutgers’ second-ever top speaker award, at West Point. Chris also holds the all-time RUDU record for possession of dinosaur T-shirts. He is planning on working in ratings agencies after Rutgers.

Bhargavi Sriram is the Vice President of the Debate Union. A rising senior majoring in Finance, Sriram joined the Union in 2009. She made the elimination rounds at UMBC last year, finishing the year ranked on APDA with regular partner Arbi Llaveshi. She also represented Rutgers at the National Championships in 2011. After graduating, she plans to pursue a career in business, though her loyalty is shifting from Taco Bell to Chipotle.

Ashley Novak is the Treasurer of the Debate Union. A rising junior in the School of Arts and Sciences, Novak started debating for Rutgers in 2010. The highest-ranking first-year woman on APDA in five years, she finished second in the prestigious 2010-2011 Novice of the Year (NOTY) rankings, the highest finish in any annual APDA ranking for a Rutgers debater in history. She finished 2011-2012 ranked 22nd team on APDA with regular partner Chris Bergman, breaking eleven times with four different partners. Known for frantically studying several languages with different alphabets at once in the Debate House, Ashley is looking at a career in linguistics after Rutgers.

Henry Phipps is the Public Relations Chair of the Debate Union. A rising senior studying Urban Planning, Phipps joined RUDU in 2011. He finished last year ranked 42nd Novice of the Year, winning two novice final rounds with regular partner Alex Jubb while breaking six times to novice outrounds. While new to the team, Phipps has established himself as one of the most enthusiastic members of the club, or indeed people to ever to set foot in the state of New Jersey. He hopes to eliminate suburban sprawl after graduating from Rutgers.

Kurt Falk is the Novice Mentor of the Debate Union. A rising sophomore in the School of Arts and Sciences, Falk joined the team in 2011. He won 10th Novice of the Year last season and won two novice divisions with regular partner Quinn Maingi, finishing third Novice Team of the Year and earning nine trips to novice outrounds. You might think Falk is moderate and even-keel, but he’d need more time to carefully consider that proposition… and then rant about it! He is currently undecided on career plans post-Rutgers.

Alex Jubb is the Alumni Coordinator of the Debate Union. A rising junior in the School of Arts and Sciences, Jubb started debating for RUDU in 2011. She finished 2011-2012 as the 29th ranked Novice of the Year and broke eight times to novice elimination rounds with three different partners, winning two novice finals with regular partner Henry Phipps. She may be the shortest E-Board member in RUDU history, narrowly swiping the previous record set by Ashley Novak and Nisha Kumar. She is still deciding her path after graduation.


The 2013 Event Director of the Rutgers University Debate Union

Deepta Janardhan is the Tournament Director of the Debate Union’s annual tournament, to be held this year on March 8-9, 2013. A rising junior majoring in Economics and Political Science, Janardhan joined RUDU in 2011. Debating mostly with regular partners Thomas O’Rourke and Nisha Kumar, she won 23 rounds last year. She also took a novice speaker award at Fordham, a tournament that also featured her ironwomaning a round. Much debate is ongoing within the club about whether or not she is lanky. Deepta is undecided on her career plans after Rutgers.


The 2012 Coaching Staff of the Rutgers University Debate Union

Storey Clayton is the Coach of the Debate Union. A graduate of Brandeis University in 2002, Clayton began coaching at Rutgers in 2009. During his APDA career, he won the North American Championship (2001), was the 2nd ranked speaker (2002), part of the 3rd Team at the National Championships (2001), 3rd ranked novice (1999), and part of the 5th ranked team (2000). Prior to coaching debate, he worked in non-profits in the Bay Area, including the Seneca Center for Children and Families and the Glide Foundation. Since his arrival at Rutgers, the team as a whole has gone from unranked in the prior eight years to 24th in 2010, 5th in 2011, and 9th in 2012. Storey is currently coaching full-time and writing novels on the side, one of which was published in 2003 and two more of which have been completed in the last two years. He gets a haircut at least once every half-decade.

Chris Baia is the Assistant Coach of the Debate Union. A graduate of Johns Hopkins University in 2008, Baia officially starts coaching in September 2012. During his APDA career, he was President of the league (2008), 2nd ranked speaker (2008), on the 6th ranked team twice (2007, 2008), 8th ranked novice (2005), and finished 12th at Nationals (2008). Prior to his arrival at Rutgers, Baia coached the Collegiate High School team in New York and earned his Juris Doctor at American University. He is the third Chris B. to join RUDU.

Candidate Statements for 2013 E-Board

The election of the Rutgers University Debate Union (RUDU) Executive Board for 2013 will be held on Tuesday, December 4th, 2012, at 9:00 PM in Murray 210.

Below are the candidate statements for all thirteen candidates for the six positions available. Please note that candidates can “drop down” to lower positions of their choice on election night if they are unelected to the position they are initially running for.

PRESIDENT
Ashley Novak (unopposed, elected)

VICE PRESIDENT
Adam Bomeisl
Alex Jubb
Arbi Llaveshi
Henry Phipps
Oksana Soomai
Russell Potter

TREASURER
Quinn Maingi

PUBLIC RELATIONS CHAIR
Deepta Janardhan
Rachel Moon

NOVICE MENTOR
Kurt Falk (incumbent)
Sean Leonard

ALUMNI COORDINATOR
Gordon Morrisette


PRESIDENT

Ashley Novak
Hi, I’m Ashley and I’m running for president of RUDU. I’ve been treasurer for almost 2 years, and have done a lot for the team while treasurer. I’ve written budgets for the team 4 times with the help of the previous president, set up the contracts necessary for our previous two tournaments and made sure everything was in place and paid for, and made sure every tournament is paid for (and that anyone who spent money was paid back as quickly as the school bureaucracy would let me). I’ve also volunteered for many events for the debate team, driven for the team to most tournaments, and stepped up to do other members’ of the eboard’s jobs when they were unavailable or just not doing their job.

I think I’d make a good president for a few reasons. First, I have a lot of experience. I’ve worked with the administration of both our school and over other schools, and have worked on the eboard for two teams. I’ve always put a lot of effort in to the eboard, and have taken on tasks that weren’t my responsibility (like handing in waivers and helping to make the tournament packet). Second, I’m incredibly devoted to the team. I spend every weekend debating and attend almost every practice. I want to continue to be actively involved in RUDU as both a competitor and a leader on the team. Finally, I also think that I’m best suited to be the representative of RUDU to the league because I’m already on the APDA board and can work closely with the league to help RUDU. Also, I’ll send in registration emails on time!

I think so far I’ve done a lot of important work for the team (in fact, we wouldn’t be a team this year if I hadn’t gotten us registered) and I want to continue to help improve the team and to represent us to both our university and the league.


VICE PRESIDENT

Adam Bomeisl
Hey, my name is Adam Bomeisl; if you don’t know me I’m kind of a big deal. Seriously though, I’m a junior who has been with the team since his freshmen year. I’m running for the position of VP. You might ask yourself, what are my qualifications? After all being VP involves a lot of different responsibilities and you want the right person for the job. There’s taking attendance at meetings and keeping track of it to see who can vote/run for e-board. I’m at basically every meeting on time so I can certainly handle taking attendance. I keep all my important records on google drive so the records could be accessed from any computer and wouldn’t be lost if my computer explodes or I lose a piece of paper or something. Another responsibility is sending emails to people every Tuesday and Thursday about meeting time/locations, accomplishments at the last tournament, etc. I have a good amount of downtime and could set some aside to send out emails to the members of our team. The VP needs to update databases relevant to the team which I could easily handle. The VP also has to handle taking care of waivers for tournaments. I have a lot of experience working with forms for debate. I was Tournament Director for our last tournament and a lot of my job was filling out the right forms and responsibly managing time. I had all classrooms reserved by September which proves that I handle responsibilities in a timely and efficient manner. The other part of my TD job was working with e-board members, SABO, and the administration to organize tournament logistics; so I have experience working with the same people and institutions I would work with as VP. From what I understand, e-board minutes falls under the responsibility of the VP (or at least they should). I fully support more e-board transparency and would be more than happy to take notes for e-board minutes. Another responsibility of the VP is to take over for the president if he/she is not around, sick, etc. I go to every meeting so I could run meetings if the president is not around. Also I go to every tournament so for APDA meetings if the president is not around, I could fill in. I have experience with APDA because I’ve been on the circuit for more than 2 years, and am well known on the circuit so I could temporarily fill in to represent Rutgers. Despite the fact that I am often sarcastic and joke around A LOT I am very responsible and take things seriously when the situation warrants it. Plus we could always use a bit of comic relief from time to time, am I right? I’m well suited for the position and I hope you will give me the opportunity to serve RUDU.

Alex Jubb
Hey everyone! I’d love to be VP this year. I don’t want to bore you to death, but here are some reasons why I want to be VP :D. I think my skills are well-suited for the position. VP is all about logistics and paperwork. This past year, I did a lot of work with logistics at our tournament and I think that it showed that I am pretty effective at getting things done. As Alumni Coordinator, I wrote and submitted a grant for RUDU’s tournament.There is also quite a bit of interaction with the administration involved. I’ve worked in a Rutgers office before and think I’d be capable of working with the administration effectively and punctually. I’m certainly open to any thoughts on what the team thinks the VP should do differently. Bhargavi has done a great job this year with sending out bi-weekly emails and I’ll be sure to continue that. Most importantly, I care a ton about RUDU and am willing to put in the work. 🙂

Arbi Llaveshi
Hi everyone. I’m running for the position of vice president. I really love this team and want to be an integral part of its continued success. If I were to be elected vice president if the club I would work hard on all if the duties assigned to me. I would also try to expand the transparency of the board. We’re having an election right now and it’s pretty funny that we have absolutely no clue what a lot of board members have contributed in their positions. If I was VP I would consistently hold every other member of the board accountable for their votes and the ways they attempted to affect the team. I would take the role of transcribing every meeting very seriously, and wouldn’t shirk on that duty. The board continually makes decisions that affect us day to day and they should be held accountable for their decisions more than once per year. I would also attempt to reduce the board’s ability to exclude members from club activities because I personally believe that when we start excluding varsity from things like the novice retreat based on personal preference we create a negative environment. We don’t need to treat every event like a hostage crises.

I’ve been called chaotic before and while the word comes nowhere near to defining me as a person, I do admit I have a rebellious nature. I believe this allows me to be confrontational when it is called for. I am not the type of person who is afraid to voice his opinions. I want to be not only a rational voice on the board but a critical one. I think I can be down to earth If I am elected and I’m looking forward working with everyone to make this team a better, more inclusive group.

Henry Phipps
Hey RUDU, I want to personally thank you for past year and a half. Not only have you all been a team, but you’ve also been a wonderful group of people I personally feel connected to, a family if you will. That being said, I want to give back to the group of people that has done so much for me, and this is why I’m running to be your Vice President. I believe, by electing me to be your VP, I can be a valuable member of the E-Board, and representative of RUDU to the school at large.

I believe I’m the correct choice for the VP position for multiple reasons. First off, I can execute on clearly defined goals. The VP position is about being able to carry out weekly tasks in order for the team to function and go to tournaments. Tasks like these are submitting waivers and itineraries, updating the listserv, and sending out emails in a systematic fashion. I showed some of this during my time as the PR Chair of the team. Both semesters I organized a scrimmage with the TCNJ team (only to have the second one be canceled by a hurricane, go figure), as well as getting the team sweatshirts and increasing the number of mentions in the Targum. During the Rutgers tournament, I was quick and efficient in not only reg-ing teams soon after they sent Rutgers their registration information, but I made housing quick and easy for Rutgers and other teams. At the same time, I understand that as PR Chair I could have done a more thorough job in reaching out to the Rutgers community. I recognize the mistakes I’ve made and I believe I can build upon those in order to further the team’s interests. Since VP has more concrete goals, I believe it’s a position that I’m better suited to fulfill.

The second reason I believe I could do well as your VP is how I interact with people. Since much of the VP role is dependent on being able to converse and interact with people, you are going to want to elect someone who you feel comfortable being a representative of the team. For one, being a liaison to the administration and patiently working with them to get the team needs. This also includes working with APDA as a body. As VP, I’ll participate in APDA meetings acting as a backup representative in order to see that RUDU’s interests are not overlooked in the grand scheme. I believe I would be an excellent candidate for this. I like to think of myself as a friendly individual who can easily work with people, at the same time not lose track of what’s important. Having many connections within APDA, both north and south, I think I could be a fine representative for Rutgers.

The final thing I want to talk about is my relationship with the team. Electing a VP is electing someone you want to be your voice not only to the school, but also to the E-Board. It is important that the people of the RUDU be represented and informed of the decisions of the E-Board. This relationship has been had a few bumps in the past semester and I personally want to be the intermediary that helps with a less contentious relationship amongst all members of the team. As VP, I will help relay information related to E-Board meetings. I believe that our team is also based off of the idea that we not only want to do well, but also have fun. I don’t believe that constraining the team is in its best interest and I hope to help facilitate people being more involved in their choices, such as deciding when/where we split, or what kind of activities the team would like to organize.

At the end of the day you need to make a decision on who you’re voting for. I sincerely hope that when you cast your vote you are voting for whomever you believe will do the most good for the team, whether or not it’s me. That said, I do believe that a vote in confidence in me is a good step in furthering the interests of the team here at Rutgers and in APDA. I want to give back to this team and help it grow, and that is why I ask for your vote at elections. Thank you.

Oksana Soomai
So what I’ve gathered from the descriptions about the vice president is that you need to be at least 2 things: dependable and organized. It goes without saying that I believe I have these qualities but this isn’t about my belief in my abilities but all of you guys believing I can do it. It is difficult to convey the trait of “dependable” or “organized” over a 3 month timespan but I still believe I have demonstrated enough overall responsibility to be deserving of the vice president position.

Dependable: I am always at meetings save for 6, and each time I missed I posted about it in the facebook group to just let everyone know, whether or not you guys even cared. Also, I am not just here on time but early, sitting in the same exact spot. Seriously, you guys can depend on the fact I will be at most meetings, sitting in my anti-social corner. In addition, anytime I have dropped from a tournament I have always done it the Sunday before the tournament to not leave my partner hanging. I try to do everything in a timely fashion to make sure no one is waiting on my response or unsure of my actions. I am a consistent person as well, typically giving everything in early and I do not freak out when it comes to handling official work. Even on the occasion I do freak out, I still maintain composure. No matter the situation, I am a person who can be counted on to come through and someone who will rise to the occasion. As your vice president, I would be a person to count on to be here and be able to just help the team in anyway I possibly can.

Organized: I am extremely organized but it is not just that I like being organized. I also like rearranging things so that they become organized. I excel at keeping things in place, making sure they stay in place and if they are not in place, I will make them that way. I will try to reduce the amount of miscommunication and make sure that everything is the way it should be. I will ensure that my area of control in the club will not be in any disarray.

Now, I can also understand your lack of faith in a novice being in charge of such an important part of the debate team but the majority of the work required by the vice president is work I have already done. When I did debate in high school all four years, I handled the paperwork such as field trip forms, keeping track of attendance at meetings, emailing teachers, etc… I am used to doing this type of work already and I am very good at it. Also, I can work well with authority and keep good relations with them. When I want to be, I can be nice and enthusiastic.

Overall, I just really enjoy being on this team. Everyone is really awesome and I really love being in this overeager atmosphere. I feel that with me as your vice president, we can keep up the carefree attitude and not have any of you guys worrying over pesky paperwork or forms. Instead, I will do the worrying for you and handle everything with ease. So vote for me if you believe that I will do a good job of being your vice president.

Russell Potter
Hi! Russell here, and I’m running for Vice President of RUDU! I’m entering the second half of my sophomore year, working towards a degree in business law. Having seen the successes and pitfalls of E-Board members past, I hold a unique combination of traits, which make me your ideal candidate. To these ends, I have three points as to why you should vote for me.

1. Dedication – Barring my first semester, I have made it a policy of attending nearly every tournament, meeting, and doing practice rounds every available night. I’ve been highly successful on the circuit, and demonstrated a marked improvement, which has inspired me to reach new heights. Every time I go to do just about anything, debate is in the back of my mind, a reminder of a higher duty. If something needs to be done, I make sure I’m there serving the team, helping it achieve. I’ve volunteered to run debates, participated in demo rounds for recruitment trips, driven to tournaments, offered my car up for transportation, organized team dinners, and am willing to offer anything, even something as small as a ear to listen, to my fellow teammates.

2. Responsibility – As a student who is trying to create my own major and is maintaining a 3.79 GPA, responsibility and organization is a tenant of how I live. I’ve slowly begun to take upon myself an increasing amount of responsibility to assist both present E-board members, as well as the team as a whole. A great example is with the tournament last year, where an oversight caused us to not have Internet access for our tournament. When I found out about the issue, I took it upon myself to navigate the Rutgers bureaucracy to get individual accounts for each and every debater and judge at the tournament. Moreover, I’ve made certain to do things like gather receipts and store cash while on trips, holding myself financially liable for any losses that may occur. I’ve done an excellent job at both maintaining the receipts and organizing them for the treasurer. The majority of the job of VP is organizing paper and dealing with the bureaucracy, and these experiences make me quite experienced with it.

3. Goals – This is something that any good candidate needs to show how they will make a long lasting, positive mark on the team. To these ends, I’ve listened to opinions about what most needs to change about the team and E-board in general, and compiled three areas, which I would work towards improving if elected.

– Inclusive Policymaking: Many people have expressed opinions of feeling left out with regards to executive decisions. The very recent publication of minutes is a step in the right direction, but it can be better. There are better ways we should include the team, and if elected, I will seek to promote improved interaction between the club and the E-board, something that is often distant. I would be willing to discuss issues that occur in E-board meetings with those who ask (not just dismiss it as something we’d discuss in a meeting), and would be willing to write detailed minutes, not just the week before elections, so that the team knows exactly where we stand.

– Increased Funding: The team is facing cutbacks, and you need someone who is willing to work with Rutgers’ system, to be a representative who will help us achieve proportionate funding to support our ever-increasing growth. I also would be willing to aid in fundraising efforts and work cohesively with the PR chair to establish sponsors for the club, as it becomes necessary to do so in these tough times.

– Long Term Growth: The team is growing at a rapid rate, with our past two years yielding the top novice classes in Rutgers’ history. With such growth, we are making major strides, like our working in union with the School of Communication, TCNJ, high school programs, and other organizations to make our team one of the most successful and well known. I have the willingness and fortitude to make our team excel even further, and will support this team no matter what.

At the end of the day, there are a lot of qualified candidates who are running for an E-board position, and even if you decide I am not right for the VP position, I am willing to work for you, either on the E-board or off it, to make RUDU as great as I know it can be.

Cheers.


TREASURER

Quinn Maingi
Hey everyone, my name is Quinn and I’m running for E-board for the position of treasurer.

The treasurer’s main job in to maintain good relations with SABO and get money for each tournament. A treasurer is also responsible for finances of the tournament and maintaining good relations with the administration, all of which require similar skills.

These functions of the treasurer require several skills, of which I will highlight three to elucidate why I am the best candidate for the job.

The first of these is dedication to the team. It is very important that a treasurer to be dedicated because they need to be able to continue focusing on their job, as well as being present at as many tournaments as possible to do all of their responsibilities. I think I am pretty clearly very dedicated to the team: I spend a lot of time at the debate house and doing practice rounds, and have literally never missed a tournament, which no one else on the debate team can claim. At that point, it will be easy for me to translate my commitment to the debate team to fulfilling the above mentioned responsibilities of the treasurer.

The second fact that is important for the treasurer is knowledge. Knowledge is important for the treasurer because SABO has some rather tense employees that mandate you stick to a rigid procedure. I have a good amount of knowledge about the positions of the team in terms of SABO and finance. The first reason is that I frequently conversed with the previous treasurer, Ashley Novak, about the procedures that are used with SABO. I also am the only member of the club that attended the treasurer training session in the fall, at which I learned both general SABO procedures and other things we have to do on the debate team because we may not fit entirely in the rules and have to go through special procedures to finance our trips. At that point, I clearly understand the procedures to be treasurer and will be best suited for the job.

The third thing that is important for treasurer is being relaxed. This is important because the job of the treasurer can often be a very stressful job and would lead to both worse performances as a treasurer and less general success in debate. This is also important because it is very bad if you freak out at SABO employees, so you still need to be very relaxed. I am clearly very relaxed in terms of my general persona and the way I act around the team. I can easily deal with stressful jobs, and stay focused and deal with the job easily.


PUBLIC RELATIONS CHAIR

Deepta Janardhan
Hey RUDU, it’s been an awesome year for us so far. I’m running for PR Chair on the e-board to try to make it even better.

The PR chair has several distinct obligations to the team, which I believe that I am most qualified to fulfill.

1) To promote the Rutgers Debate team to the larger Rutgers community.
So far, we have tried to contact the Targum and keeping them informed of news events. In addition to this, I would shift to making Rutgers Debate a bigger presence on campus in other ways, such as by signing up for involvement fairs, and putting up posters for general meetings and RUDU events. I think that one of our main goals should be to eventually make Debate a club that everyone at Rutgers automatically accepts to be a completely integral part of campus life. This will help us attract talented students who already attend our school. Throughout my three years at Rutgers, I have gotten to know many different people on campus whom I would be able to contact to help us achieve this. Finally, I would work to ensure that RUDU always has a seat at the table, in terms of the administration’s priorities.

2) To work out the logistics of various inter- and intra- school events.
This includes scheduling the above-mentioned involvement fairs, but also, planning some of the public debates that we usually try to have. In the past, Storey has ended up shouldering a lot of the burden for these extra events, and I would be willing to take on a lot of this responsibility. As many of you know, I am the tournament director for the March 2013 tournament. During the course of that event, I would have to perform many of these tasks, such as budget planning, scheduling, and talking to the administration. This would allow me to gain an insight into the nuances of Rutgers administration, and learn the “tricks” that are needed to get work done in a timely, effective manner, which would make me best suited to plan other events going forward.

I would also continue to work with other schools’ debate teams, such as how we have in the past with TCNJ. A few years ago, we had a Kings-Queens debate event with Columbia University, outside of the regular APDA schedule. This might be another example of something I’d work to plan, as part of re-forming connections with APDA Central.

3) To foster a sense of camaraderie on RUDU amongst its members.
In my opinion, this might be the most important duty of PR chair which has been under-addressed in the past. One aspect of this is, of course, doing things for the team which they request, such as ordering sweatshirts or varsity jackets that members would enjoy. The larger spirit of this is all about encouraging members of the team in their efforts, offering advice whenever it is solicited, and performing basic conflict-resolution when people ask for it.
This is especially important, considering the PR chair’s role with respect to the e-board. They should be someone who can represent the team’s interests as a whole, while still keeping in mind the e-board’s duties.

Ultimately, the PR chair needs to be someone who is responsible and practical enough to do whatever needs to be done, while still being approachable and easy-going enough to project a great image of RUDU, and I believe that I will fit into this role well.

Rachel Moon
Hey guys! I want to run for the PR position because I think our team is awesome, but not many people really know just how awesome we are. I have a lot of connections with people in RUSL (RU Student Life) and the leaders of other organizations on campus through my position on the RUSA Allocations Board, and not only am I always telling people about how great and highly-ranked our team is, but I also have an office right next to the Targum office. It would be really easy for me to badger them if they don’t respond to my incessant emails, should they choose not to respond (because apparently this is a problem that we’ve been having). In general, I just would really love to spread our team’s reputation even more and garner more attention to us, and I promise that I’d be good at this. I’ve gone to every tournament this year (except Swat Novice and Yale IV, obviously) and I like this team a lot. But I have noticed that there’s all this controversy over the whole “transparency” issue, and I think that’s because the E-Board is lacking someone who talks to literally everyone about everything… which is me. I also really want to break this conceived notion that you can’t have an opinion or an important role in the team if you’re not a super highly-ranked debater. I think a lot of incoming members think this, and I want to show everyone that that’s absolutely not true. It shouldn’t matter whether you’re first or billionth on the SOTY board – this is everyone’s team, and I want to make sure that we bridge a lot of the gap between all the members and the E-Board as well as between novices and varsity, and I truly believe that I could do all of this and more if I were on the board.


NOVICE MENTOR

Kurt Falk
As your incumbent Novice Mentor, I am extremely excited to be running for the position once again. Through my experience as an e-board member this year I believe I fulfilled my duty to the highest extent in my approach to the Novice Mentor Position.

Novice Mentor was a brand new position re-introduced last year. This required me not to just fulfill the basic requirements of the job but to also set the precedent for how all future novice mentors should act. I completed this challenge by taking the initiative needed to make a new, untested position succeed. I shaped the Novice Mentor Position by doing the following:

Organizing and Running Novice Training Workshops: Throughout the semester I led workshops that were focused around improving Novice debaters in debate practicum. It was an endeavor that I took upon myself and believed them integral to the success and improvement of the novice class.

Reaching out to High School debaters: The future of our team relies on getting a continuing stream of members once they enter Rutgers. Over my tenure, I took active steps to achieve this goal by personally visiting High Schools in the Fall of 2011, organizing an Open House for interested students, and taking charge of summer recruiting efforts, including manning the Summer Orientation fair interest table.

Introducing Novices to the Team: One of my favorite aspects of Novice Mentor was connecting with the new members of the team and making sure they felt acclimated to the team atmosphere as well as removing any obstacles they may have had towards learning debate. This was evident in my proactive behavior at tournaments, where I made sure to check in with every novice after rounds and would prep and cheer on novice teams that broke to novice out rounds. I took a similar approach at meetings, where I would forgo my own practice rounds to teach new members the basics of debate. This is perhaps the most integral role of the Novice Mentor and it’s a role that my personality and experience make me uniquely suited for.

In addition to solidifying the Novice Mentor position, I tried to take advantage of my position on the-board in ways that benefited the whole team. One of my favorite additions to the team traditions is the Senior Banquet. From inception to implementation, I organized and planned every action, from making the menus, renting the space, collecting the money, and creating the activities.

You will find no other candidate that has accomplished what I have done as Novice Mentor. I have proved, above and beyond, my ability to fulfill the position. Not only that, I also have the approachability needed for someone who deals with making new people feel comfortable. Also, I make sure to look out for everyone on the whole team, from our most active varsity to the newest member. It means that if I’m elected I’ll always be able to advocate for what’s in the best interest of the team instead of my own selfishness or the advocacy of select friends.

If you elect me for Novice Mentor, you’ll get someone who won’t just sit in place and only do the bare minimum. You’ll get someone who has shown they have the initiative, the experience, and the right attitude to get things done and make the Rutgers Debate Union even better than before.

(Still not convinced? Here is a list of Kurt’s lesser known, but still worthwhile accomplishments)
-Was born in a log cabin in the foothills of suburban New Jersey
-Decided to become a Religion Studies major for the money
-Commutes to Rutgers by sailing down the Raritan on a converted 1967 Buick
-Was the lead ukulele player for a polygamist-lesbian-folk-glamrock band called Slippery Slope but quit over creative differences
-Related to that, Kurt also coined the term “Slippery Slope”, but not for the reasons that you would guess
-Still believes that Mother Night will become a major world religion after his violent martrydo…..um…..I mean peaceful death of natural causes
-Has such an adverse fear of snakes that he has minor trouble eating spaghetti because the resemblance of the noodles to the reptile is just too uncanny

Sean Leonard
The office of Novice Mentor requires a select set of attributes in order to fulfil it’s entire responsibility. This responsibility is not one to be taken lightly, as it arguably determines the success of the entire team, even if that success manifests a year or two after the actions of the office itself. To be an effective Novice Mentor, you have to adequately balance training, recruitment, and retention of new people. If any of these factors are neglected, then the team, as a whole, will suffer as a result. Understanding this, I, Sean Leonard, would like to declare my intent to seek the position of Novice Mentor, promising to fulfill the three attributes of being a novice mentor to the best of my ability.

As a novice myself, I have a unique perspective of recently joining debate, with the memory of my first tournament, or even my first round, still highly prominent in my mind. This not only allows me to relate to the people I would be helping in a beneficial way, but also be able to pinpoint certain issues that I remember going through in the beginning. In addition to this, although my total time in Debate has been short, my participation has been the maximum I could possibly muster. I’ve been able to participate in every tournament, the novice retreats, while only missing one meeting the entire semester. From the practice rounds at the debate house, to participating in the debate class, to volunteering in the debate team public recruitment opportunities, I’ve done my best to participate 100% in the club, and that same work ethic will be replicated if I’m elected here.

Considering there are three main attributes of a good Novice Mentor, I’d like to talk a bit about why I can easily fulfill and excell at each of them. Firstly, I am obviously more than capable at training novices in the basic rules of debate. There have been multiple times where I had to help out other novices or partners with learning, or casing, or whatever was required at the time. Due to the fact I’ve been working alongside novices the entire semester, I’ve acquired some valuable experience. However, I must admit that there is much I still do not know about Debate. Whatever short falls that I have in that capacity will be made up by the wealth of experience held by the remainder of the team. Obviously, the role of the novice mentor is not to teach everything, but rather, to facilitate basic understanding.

Secondly, the recruitment of new novices is highly important to team efficiency. I feel as though our current recruitment methods are more than adequate for the needs of the team as it stands now. Through a combination of the novice retreats, standard recruitment at activity fairs, as well as a little bit of press regarding our accomplishments, we can achieve the steady flow of people required to support the team in the long term.

Finally, retention of new recruits is arguably as important as the recruitment of them in the first place. Retention, in my opinion, is the area where the most potential good can be done. The reality is, a lot of people simply cannot be swayed to join debate, or even in some cases, try it out. Call in fear of public speaking, or simple disinterest, but we’ve all met the person who simply won’t entertain the idea of joining. Therefore, we need to focus highly on the people who show interest in the start, and try to facilitate a common image that incorporates them, and puts them in a position where they want to succeed. Having a novice mentor who is a novice themselves probably contributes to this, but additional measures are obviously required to ensure that more people stay on, ensuring a high overall skill level of the team itself.

In summation, I pledge to show the same amount of activity as Novice Mentor as I portrayed as a simple novice. Also, Vote Communist.

Thank You,
Sean Leonard
☭☭☭☭☭☭


ALUMNI COORDINATOR

Gordon Morrisette
Dear RUDU,

Our debate team has greatly developed over the past four years. We now have two coaches, half a house, and we take more teams in a single weekend that we would send in a semester. The dangers we face, as we grow and change, are that alumni no longer feel the debate team is the same club they were part of and that RUDU as an organization become unsustainable.

As a fifth-year senior next year, I will be one of the only members of the team who personally knows the alumni from my freshman year. A familiar face, while not a panacea, can help create a sense of continuity and will aid in outreach. As Alumni Coordinator, I would advocate for the alumni on the e-board in order to bring back the traditions they held dear and to support their interests.

RUDU’s most pressing concern over the next year will be diversifying its income streams to insure sustainability. We should be looking for companies to sponsor our tournament, connecting with Rutgers alumni to fund our team or trips, and applying for more grants. I’m running for Alumni Coordinator because I feel this position which offers the greatest opportunity to give back to the team and help build a stronger and more lasting financial foundation for the years to come.

Fall 2011 E-Board

With the election of the 2012 Executive Board, this information the Fall 2011 E-Board is being archived here.

The Fall 2011 EBoard, here pictured as stylized into The Wizard of Oz, will be running for re-election against a full slate of challengers. Elections will be held Tuesday, December 6th at 9 PM in Murray 210. The Executive Board will be expanded from four to six members in 2012 with the addition of a Novice Mentor and Alumni Coordinator.

The Fall 2011 Executive Board of the Rutgers University Debate Union

Chris Bergman is the President of the Debate Union. A rising junior majoring in Electrical and Computer Engineering, Bergman joined RUDU in 2009. He finished 2010-2011 as part of two teams in the top forty in the APDA rankings, ranked 17th with Ashley Novak and 36th with Farhan Ali. Between the two partnerships, he made the elimination rounds at six tournaments that year and qualified for the 2011 National Championships. He served as Tournament Director of the 2011 Rutgers tournament. Chris is undecided on his career plans after Rutgers.

Nisha Kumar is the Vice President of the Debate Union. A rising junior in the School of Arts and Sciences, Kumar joined RUDU in 2010. She finished 2010-2011 as the 65th ranked novice on APDA and finished in the top five novice teams thrice over the year, all with regular partner Adam Bomeisl. One of the few science majors on the team, she is known for bringing copious homework and textbooks to tournaments while also finding time to ruthlessly outwit opponents in all manner of card games. Nisha plans to pursue a career in medicine after graduating from Rutgers.

Ashley Novak is the Treasurer of the Debate Union. A rising sophomore in the School of Arts and Sciences, Novak started debating for Rutgers in 2010. The highest-ranking first-year woman on APDA in five years, she finished second in the prestigious 2010-2011 Novice of the Year (NOTY) rankings, the highest finish in any annual APDA ranking for a Rutgers debater in history. She was also ranked 17th as a partnership with Chris Bergman and broke to varsity out-rounds six times as a novice, qualifying for the 2011 National Championships. Ashley is undecided on her future path after Rutgers.

Stephen Yellin is the Public Relations Chair of the Debate Union. A graduate student in the School of Communications, Yellin joined the team in 2010. He won two tournament novice division championships in 2010-2011 and placed in the novice team and novice speaker rankings at several more. He has also been known to speak in a variety of accents during debate rounds and is the reigning APDA Scrabble champion. Stephen seems destined for a career in politics after completing his degree at Rutgers.

Adam Bomeisl is the Co-Tournament Director of the Debate Union’s annual tournament, to be held this year on February 17-18, 2012. A rising sophomore in the School of Arts and Sciences, Bomeisl joined RUDU in 2010. He finished in the top five novice teams at five tournaments in 2010-2011, both with regular partners Nisha Kumar and Stephen Yellin. He also won some novice speaker awards and represented Rutgers at the National Championships in 2011. He has never ever been sarcastic. Adam is undecided on his career plans after Rutgers.

Bhargavi Sriram is the Co-Tournament Director of the Debate Union’s annual tournament, to be held this year on February 17-18, 2012. A rising junior majoring in Finance, Sriram joined the Union in 2009. She made the elimination rounds for the first time in 2010-2011, finishing the year ranked on APDA with regular partner Krishna Kavi. She also received back-to-back 26.5’s at a tournament and represented Rutgers at the National Championships in 2011. Bhargavi plans to enter the business world after Rutgers, possibly to manage a franchise of her favorite restaurant, Taco Bell.

Storey Clayton is the Coach of the Debate Union. A graduate of Brandeis University in 2002, Clayton began coaching at Rutgers in 2009. During his APDA career, he won the North American Championship (2001), was the 2nd ranked speaker (2002), part of the 3rd Team at the National Championships (2001), 4th ranked novice (1999), and part of the 5th ranked team (2000). Prior to coaching debate, he worked in non-profits in the Bay Area, including the Seneca Center for Children and Families and the Glide Foundation. Since his arrival at Rutgers, the team as a whole has gone from unranked in the prior eight years to 24th in 2010 and 5th in 2011. Storey is currently coaching full-time and writing novels on the side, one of which was published in 2003 and two more of which have been completed in the last 18 months.

2012 Executive Board Candidate Statements

The Fall 2011 EBoard, here pictured as stylized into The Wizard of Oz, will be running for re-election against a full slate of challengers. Elections will be held Tuesday, December 6th at 9 PM in Murray 210. The Executive Board will be expanded from four to six members in 2012 with the addition of a Novice Mentor and Alumni Coordinator.

Positions and Candidates Summary
President: Chris Bergman*, Adam Bomeisl, Bhargavi Sriram
Vice President: Nisha Kumar*
Treasurer: Ashley Novak*
Public Relations Chair: Stephen Yellin*, Henry Phipps, Dongyi Zhuyan
Novice Mentor (new position): Archana Babu, Kurt Falk, Arbi Llaveshi, Quinn Maingi
Alumni Coordinator (new position): Jason Boyle, Alex Jubb

*incumbent
Please note: drop-downs are permitted for those unelected to higher positions.


The President is the leader of the team, responsible for running meetings in conjunction with the Coach, communicating with the team and other member schools of APDA, and coordinating and submitting all registrations for tournaments in a timely fashion. The President must also attend all APDA Meetings as the voting member for RUDU, or designate someone to do so in the case of their absence. The President may have many additional duties arise over the course of their tenure in the same capacity of representing the team both within and outside of the university.

Chris Bergman (incumbent)
Hey everyone, I’m Chris, and I’d like to continue being your President. Being President of the team requires several things—being able to lead the club, serving as the club’s representative to the rest of the circuit, and working with the members of the team. I think I’ve demonstrated through the past 6 months that I am capable and successful as President.

First, I have a great deal of experience on the E-Board—I’ve been President this past year, and was our Tournament Director the year before (back when TD was still part of the E-Board). Having seen how different people run the club has helped me learn how to lead the team, especially by avoiding some of the mistakes from the past. Additionally, from high school, I was the President or Vice President for 5 clubs. Most importantly, everyone has seen how I and the rest of the E-Board have run meetings, and can see for themselves how meetings actually run on time—a first for RUDU.

Second, I am someone the entire league knows. When people from other schools need something from Rutgers, they usually text me or send me a facebook message because I’ve built friendships with people from almost every team. As President, I can use this to the club’s advantage as our representative in APDA meetings as well as talk to other teams about waiving judge requirements or hybriding with someone whose partner dropped. Most other members of our team may not have the phone numbers or friendships to make these work out.

Finally, I can work with the team. I can talk to anyone on the team, and I usually do. When it’s time to recruit more people, most of you remember me from the novice retreat where, in addition to helping out, I also was friendly and welcoming. I also try to be enthusiastic about debate to serve as an example of what debate can mean for each of us.

I think it’s clear: RUDU has expanded and been successful because the E-Board has worked, and I’d appreciate if you vote for me to keep doing what I’ve been doing.

Adam Bomeisl
My name is Adam Bomeisl and I will be running for President of the Rutgers University Debate Union. For those of you who don’t know me I am a sophomore, History/Political Science major who is in his second year of debate. I have been with the club since the beginning of my freshman year. Throughout my debate career I’ve made it a point to come to as many meetings and tournaments as possible. In fact my freshman year I only missed 3 APDA tournaments and North-Ams; also I attended Nationals. I’ve broken a few times to novice out rounds during my freshman year, gotten to multiple varsity bubble rounds, won novice speaker awards, and won the West Point novice division with Stephen Yellin as my partner. This year I have been to every tournament and every meeting except one. I broke at four tournaments and got to bubble rounds at almost all of them this semester. I’m almost always available to help people with any debate related questions: cases, rules, knowledge related to debate, etc. Also, I am never ever sarcastic under any circumstances.

I am a good leader who is unafraid to take charge and make decisions. I devote a lot of time to the club and am always looking for ways I can help the team. I also have e-board experience as this year’s Co-Tournament Director. I assure everyone that my responsibilities as Tournament Director will not interfere with my ability to be President. I am very responsible and manage my time well. As an added bonus my schedule allows me to go to bed pretty late (around 1 or 2am), be available for most of Tuesday and Thursday, and I live about 100 feet from the debate house, so I can keep the debate house open pretty late for things such as rounds and game night. However, if the team does decide that I am not presidential material, I plan to drop down to run for other e-board positions. Ultimately it is up to the club to decide collectively where they think my devotion and experience ought be utilized on the e-board. Of course if any of our team members have any questions for me feel free to message me on facebook or e-mail me at abomeisl.eden.rutgers.edu.

Bhargavi Sriram
Hi Guys!! Please vote for me. I really care about our team and I promise to be a very dedicated and efficient officer. I also promise that I will always be open to criticism and take all of your concerns and/or ideas into account. I have had plenty of leadership experience at other clubs( Treasurer of Roosevelt Institute, Busch campus representative for RUSA, Mentor at RU-Tv). Give me a chance to put all those experiences to good use. 🙂 I have also been a very effective and active contributor to RUDU over the past three years and I will continue to do so in the future. Lastly, I ask you to vote for me because I will always bring a lot of enthusiasm to anything that the club requires of me and I will also always be there for you guys. Contact me with any further questions . Thank you. 🙂


The Vice President is responsible for all paperwork related to the team, in addition to taking over for the President should they be unable to serve for brief or extended periods of time and supporting the President in all their duties as needed. This person is also responsible for all internal team communication, especially bi-weekly reminders about upcoming meetings and tournaments to all members of the RUDU mailing list. Timely submission of forms each week and corresponding attention to detail are a must. This person is also be responsible for keeping attendance at each meeting.

Nisha Kumar (incumbent)
This part semester RUDU has been going through many changes. Our team has expanded greatly in size, we have acquired a house, and a much more expansive budget. In order to make sure these transitions continue smoothly second semester, it is extremely important to have someone with experience. Here are some qualities to consider

Punctuality: I am always on time and always present at meetings, and at tournaments when I can be. There has never been an occasion where I have forgotten a responsibility or failed to complete something on time, or have backed out of a responsibility at the last minute.

Time Management and commitment: I am capable of handling many responsibilities at once, something a VP must be able to do. I have even molded my crazy chem classes around debate!

Organized: VP has to be able to handle attendance and forms well. Both of these things have been done this semester.

I also have the ability to work well with all other members of the team, as well as the ability to set up good relationships with the administration. I have can handle stressful situations without getting stressed and have the ability to get things done under pressure.
That is all. =)


The Treasurer is responsible for all financial matters related to the team, including and especially registration fees for tournaments, reimbursement of team members for gas and tolls, income from tournament hosting and possibly other events as they may arise, and submitting the semesterly budget to RUSA. This position carries an immense amount of responsibility and timeliness and attention to detail are critical.

Ashley Novak (incumbent)
I’m Ashley Novak and I’m running for treasurer. I was treasurer for RUDU during the fall semester. I believe that I’ve done the job well and would love to continue doing it. As of today, no individual is owed more than $100, and no tournament competed at this year is owed any registration fees. The job requires a lot of hard work and devotion, and I have demonstrated both of these.


The Public Relations Chair is responsible for communicating the success of the team to the outside world and the internal world of the Rutgers campus. This position involves regular communication with the Targum and other media outlets and involves discussion of the team’s activities and accomplishments in an exciting and nuanced way that promotes an interest in the team. This position is also responsible for recruiting from the student body through printed materials, direct communication, and events.

Stephen Yellin (incumbent)
As your current Director of Public Relations, I am asking you to support in keeping that job. I want to remain your PR Director for 3 reasons:

1) The PR Director’s job these days is primarily to increase our visibility with the media and pursue good publicity opportunities. I have been doing this exact type of work in politics and with multiple school clubs for the last several years, as well as regularly sending out press releases on our success this semester.

2) As a member of the E-Board with Chris, Ashley and Nisha, I have worked well with them and Storey to make sure RUDU runs as smoothly as possible. I want to keep working with them to make our club as efficient as it is fun.

3) With our upcoming tournament and other great activities, I want to make sure we get the maximum positive press possible out of these events. You can count on me to actively urge the local and regional news outlets (print, TV and Internet) to cover our events, possibly in person.

As part of my commitment to RUDU, I have organized a weekly Game Night and bought bagels on Friday mornings for tournament goers (on my own dime). I love our group and would be honored to stay on as PR Director in order to put that love to good use in the year ahead!

Feel free to e-mail me at stephenyellin@yahoo.com if you have any questions or concerns. Thanks! – Stephen

Henry Phipps
Hey RUDU, it’s been a true pleasure to work and debate alongside you in the past three months, this team has given me a lot of joy and experience. It would be a true honor, with your support, to allow me to contribute something back to the team by electing me your Public Relations Chair. I believe, in the past months, I’ve demonstrated my dedication to the team and will be more than effective in bringing a dynamic voice to the Rutgers student body on behalf of RUDU. Let me start off by giving you a picture of what I would do as Public Relations Chair then talk a little about my experience.
1. I will consistently update the team on results and triumphs at tournaments along with making sure people are recognized for their personal achievements and goals being met. Because of how often I attend tournaments and check apdaweb I more than able to easily bring these results to attention to the team quickly.
2. We as a team, and a successful one at that, need to establish a rapport with the Targum. This will be one of my first priorities as Public Relations Chair. I believe this is a crucial move in order to be a larger presence in the Rutgers community. Whether it be weekly updates, or just a few a month, either way we should be recognized, and I would strive to get said recognition for your accomplishments.
3. The Targum is not the only way we can grow closer to the Rutgers community. In my experience, it is important to showcase our abilities and involve the community. I aim to plan more consistent public events for exhibition, and make ties with other clubs and organizations by coordinating events together. These events give us presence, school-wide interest and have fun while doing it.
4. Finally, I want to bring onto the table ideas from everyone on the team, come up with more innovative, dynamic ways to involve ourselves with the Rutgers community with your help, involvement, and creativity.

I’ve had my share of experiences running and organizing clubs in the past. In High School I was a senior member of an internationally ranked robotics team and helped plan public showcases with groups around the city. But more importantly, during my Freshman year at Temple we helped host multiple public debates against groups like the Temple Feminist club. I helped advertise and organize the club which grew over time. Although I may not have the most experience, between what experience I do have, and my strategies to involve everyone’s ideas to further the team’s image, I feel I can contribute greatly to the team.

At the end of the day, you’re going to have to vote for someone. I will be first to admit that there are multiple qualified candidates to choose from. And as a voter, on behalf of RUDU, you have an obligation to vote for the people who you think will best represent you. It would be an honor to be considered for the position of Public Relations, and have an opportunity to bring our team further into the Rutgers Community. I believe that I, Henry Phipps, am the best candidate for the position, and will work tirelessly as your Public Relations Chair of the Rutgers University Debate Union to make your voice heard. Thank you.

Dongyi Zhuyan
Hey there! I’m Dongyi Zhuyan and I running for the position of Public Relations Chair. Take note. I go by the name Austin or Dongles, because it flows better like a flow pad.

This Public Relations Chair is a demanding position that requires one to be mobile around campus and have connections with the media. It also requires the person to be able to advertise to the people the various accomplishments adventures the team has and most importantly what it does.

Here are some points that prove my case to you.
1. I travel a lot across the New Brunswick Campus. I’ll have class on Busch, Livingston, College Avenue and Cook/Douglass. Yes it is a hectic schedule but it allows me to be able to access bulletins every where so I can post all the info of the club anywhere.
2. I am rather open minded to new ideas and propositions. I can adapt and manipulate words enough to grab attention in press releases. I have gotten some reviews for my manipulation of some writings done back in high school. Some of these were also posted as advertisements for clubs such as Computer and Chess club. I work well with it.
3. Finally, I am a people’s person. I am able to connect with people and get info passed along by mouth. I am more of a team effort of a guy, working to help a group in the long run. Its rather my preference and combined with your input will make broadcasts and announcements through the people. In addition, being a team member brings forth a huge more amount of effort into work. It brings effort that turns into something synergetic, something even more. I listen well, able to take in a lot and get everything. I’ll be very proactive as the Public Relations Chair.
I end with a smaller note. I find RUDU to be a nice little relief my engineering major. It a nice way to get involved in the world, taking in ideas and debate too. If I become the Public Relations chair, I pay back the club with a lot more than I would if I was not on it. Choose wisely!
Dongyi “Austin” Zhuyan


The Novice Mentor is responsible for working with the Coach to maximize the involvement, excitement, participation, and improvement of the novice class. This will also involve recruiting over the summer, including participation at involvement fairs. The person in this position will spend extra time judging novice practice rounds and following-up with novices to ensure their feeling welcome on the team.

Archana Babu
Hey homies! My name is Archana, better known as Archie, and I hope to be elected as the Novice Mentor for the upcoming school year. Firstly, I’d like to thank RUDU for welcoming me into its family, and to return the gratitude, I want to contribute in a way that’s best for the club: by becoming your Novice Mentor. The position is a perfect fit for me—it requires dedication, communication skills, and leadership. Not only do I meet these standards, but I exceed them in many ways.

Dedication: To put it simply: I love RUDU. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed myself at every tournament I’ve attended, and I’ve made a group of eccentric, hilarious friends that all of my suitemates know about because I talk about you guys so much. I’ve attended numerous meetings and enough tournaments to be considered a varsity member next year, and I view RUDU as a way to let-loose and relieve my stress when I’m not thuggin’ on the streets. This semester, my schedule has been quite demanding, preventing me from attending Game Night and other social events, but even these sacrifices are an investment into the club. Why? This means that my workload will greatly diminish next year (boo yah!), leaving me time to completely dedicate myself to the club. Next year, not only will I be able to attend almost every tournament, but I will have time on the side to help novices and judge extra novice practice rounds, and of course, eat with the team and kick everyone’s butt during Game Night.

Communication Skills: Being a Novice Mentor requires that I am able to take direction from those that want to teach me, and to convey information in a way that’s easily accessible to others. If any of you have spoken to me, you’re already aware that I’m very outgoing and approachable. I’m always willing to help my friends succeed, and if elected, will do my best to work with novices and help them with their transition into RUDU. As a novice this year, I still remember the doubts and questions I had before my first tournament, and my questions were slowly answered over time from attending tournaments. I want to teach these things to novices earlier, so they can start at an advantage that I never had. I remember what it was like attending my first tournament—with literally no training (I had no idea what a POI was)—and I want to make this transition more comfortable for others. I’m also very patient, and with the extra time I’ll have next year, I’d be willing to work with each and every novice as much as he/she needs. With my patience, willingness to help, and outspoken nature, my communication skills make me an ideal Novice Mentor.

Leadership: When assuming any position, one must be a good leader. I’ve already had experience with this. In high school, I was an editor for my school yearbook, and was the Editor-In-Chief my senior year. I had to make deadlines, communicate with the publishing company and my school, monitor all of my staff members, and delegate tasks to others. I’m good at thinking on my feet—especially minutes before a deadline—and I am composed in stressful situations (actually, I love stressful situations!). In addition, I led my school’s tennis team and was captain of an Odyssey of the Mind team for eight years—a team in which 7 of my peers competed at the regional, state, and international level against other teams. I also led a clarinet ensemble and managed school work on the side. I can not only do my job efficiently and effectively, but I can multi-task and handle more than one thing at once in an organized fashion. Luckily, I am willing to devote 100% of my time to RUDU next year, so I can channel all of my efforts towards leading RUDU Novices toward success. Despite being a great leader, I also know when to take direction. Being in different musical ensembles, sports teams, and staffs in high school, I was able to contribute as a team member to bring the most optimal result. I’m willing to do both, contribute a part and assume leadership, to help RUDU as a whole.
Those of you that know me are already aware that I’m a baller, but if you elect me, I can be your Novice Mentor, too.

Kurt Falk
I’m running for Novice Mentor because I feel that it is the position I’m best suited for and it will give me a chance to create beneficial good for RUDU. Novice Mentor is a new position and thus if done well in its inaugural year can set a standard for the position in years to come. This is why I feel it’s important that you elect me to this position. In a surprising move, I have three reasons why I am the ideal person for Novice Mentor.

Personable: Novice Mentor is an open-face position. Every duty of Novice Mentor, from recruiting to teaching novices to giving critiques, requires someone who is personable and agreeable. If a Novice mentor is too shy or sheepish, new members will never be able to engage with the mentor in a way that’s meaningful. On the other end, if a Novice Mentor is too intimidating or outward new members will be scared away, afraid to ask for help, and never be able to view the mentor as an equal. I strike the perfect balance between the two, being able to connect with new people while talking to them in a way that doesn’t intimidate and make them quit the team forever.

“Okay, so you think you’re some kind of reincarnated Citizen Kane. Let’s say you’re not making this up and you’re as personable as you say. What’s this going to get me if after you’re elected you elope to Costa Rica, never to be seen again?”

That’s a good question, Disembodied Voice. You bring me to my second point:

Dedication: One of the primary traits that you want to see in any E-board member is dedication. My dedication to the team has been seen throughout my entire time with RUDU. I’m going to go into policy mode for a sec (forgive me) and blitz some facts: Only ever missed one meeting, have gone to nearly every tournament (even more then most varsity), been on time for every tournament, almost always stay for late rounds, still come to meetings if not going to tournament that weekend, volunteered my car, have driven people to tournaments, at the debate house nearly everyday it’s open, and most importantly of all – bought colorful bendy straws for the debate house!

My proven dedication and love of the team shows that I won’t pull a no-show when it comes to the team’s most important events and responsibilities.

“So you’re dedicated. Big fucking deal. If a 2×4 goes to every meeting, he’s just as dedicated as you. How do I know that this dedication will lead to something a little bit more important…RESULTS!”

Disembodied Voice, sometimes your questions act so well as transition mechanisms that it almost seems like I wrote them for you. You lead me to my next point, Goals.

Goals: RUDU is on the brink of a new era, one where we are the supreme team. The Novice mentor is in a unique position to affect the most long-term change out of any other member of the E-board. Through careful recruiting and nurture of the novice class the Novice Mentor can sow the seeds of greatness.

Or, they have the terrible power to screw it up.

Because of this responsibility, I want to outline a few goals that I hope to achieve as a Novice Mentor:
Create recruiting pipelines in debate clubs throughout New Jersey high schools
Many of us did debate through High School and we need to stay in contact with these clubs to motivate their graduates to go to Rutgers. I have seen this work with my high school Model UN club, whereas almost every person from that club who went to Rutgers then became involved in Rutgers Model UN through some form or another. I even went to their introduction meeting at the beginning of the semester, simply because I knew they existed via my high school experience.
Create Debate Clubs in high schools that do not have one
Not only will this help for the same reasons outlined in the first point, it’s also an effective form of community service. We all enjoy debate and we should take up the responsibility to get as many people involved in the activity as we can.
Holding a Novice workshop at the Debate House at least once a week
Those who got to go to the Novice Workshops over the summer got a great introduction to debate. But many people joined after the fact, midway (end of 750-word limit)

Arbi Llaveshi
Hey Everyone, I’m going to keep this short and to the point since I personally dislike long, drawn out campaign statements.
I’m currently running for the Novice Mentor position within the team. I desire this position because it represents the fundamental future of our team. In my mind the success or RUDU is not just entrenched in the present but also in future prospects. So when I think about it, being the novice mentor is extremely important; the mentor is essentially responsible for the team’s current and future growth and if the team’s quality stagnates or recedes then the Mentor can be held responsible for this.
In my mind, RUDU is still in its formative years, and I want to help shape a team which consistently maintains a great image and legacy within the community. I want to help new recruits succeed in any way I can, and I believe that the novice mentor position puts me into an excellent place to shape the future of our team for the better.
So inevitably the question you’re asking yourself becomes simple. Why pick Arbi? Well to start off, currently I have five years of experience in debate. I think I am well versed in discriminating between good and bad arguments, determining the quality of a newbie’s speaking, and extremely dedicated to this activity. I also have connections to coaches within the High School speaking community, many of my High school friends are now coaches for different teams, and this allows me to help the team find “diamonds in the rough” which could be prospective SOTY or TOTY contenders.
At the end of the day I believe these factors and my overall positive attitude towards the team and the novices we bring in prove that I am the best candidate for this position. I hope to receive your vote in the near future!
-The Arbiter

Quinn Maingi
Hi everyone, I’m Quinn, and I’m running for the position of novice mentor. Being a novice mentor requires several important skills: dedication, experience, and perspective. Here’s why I’m good at all three:

Dedication: Dedication is an attribute that is required of a novice mentor because it requires a great deal of time investment over the summer and at times when others may or may not be willing to work, as well as simply investing time in preparation of novices for tournaments. This is the most essential facet for any novice mentor to be successful at either recruitment or instruction, as a lack of invested time signifies that responsibilities will not be fulfilled. I’m probably the only person in the debate union who can legitimately claim to have never missed a tournament, and to have almost always been on time to meetings. I plan to continue this precedent through the spring semester, and thus will be able to invest necessary time to be a successful novice mentor.

Experience: A novice mentor requires a different kind of experience than simply being good at debate: it requires experience and an understanding of how to instruct novices in skills and in basic skills of debate. Although I am also a novice, I have a great deal of experience in this field from high school during which I held several positions of comparable stature. These positions led me to understand methods of teaching that can work for different learning styles in such a way that will allow for me to be successful. As an example to illustrate my success in this field, I often prepared freshmen well enough for competitions that they were able to actually win a 1st or 2nd place award commonly, which really did not happen more than once or twice in all of my clubs from high school during the 3 years before I took these leadership positions.

Perspective: It’s important for a novice mentor to be able to understand the problems that novices will have, as well as an ability to understand. I have faced just about every single technical mistake that a debater can commit, and almost immediately afterwards figured out why it was a mistake. Furthermore, I can understand the biggest problems that novices will mistake as I commonly make them as well, which allows for me to preempt these mistakes such that they will further aid novices in participation. Finally, I can bring a unique perspective to the E-Board as I am closer to the novice class, and can thus provide a fresh perspective at all meetings of the E-board.


The Alumni Coordinator is responsible for maintaining a working relationship and contact with former members of the Debate Union. This will involve relaying the success of the Union to those interested in hearing about it, involving alumni in the tournament each year, and generally developing ways to get alumni involved in the current life and events of RUDU.

Jason Boyle
I wish to carry out the duties of the Alumni Coordinator for RUDU by proving my ability to succeed in such a responsible position and to keep the graduated Rutgers debaters in touch with the team they dedicated so much of their time to. Therefore, I give you three reasons for why I should be the Alumni Coordinator.

1. Experience: I spent two years as an active member of the Phi Theta Kappa International Honor Society for two-year colleges at Salem Community College. During my time in the honor society, I was elected as Vice President of Leadership, I ran two successful car wash fundraisers and two study group meetings, and my activity within the chapter earned me a 2011 Phi Pheta Kappa Middle States Region Distinguished Chapter Officer award. I actively participated in the emerging Student Government Association at my community college and ran the Earth Day events committee, which ran a successful campus wide Earth Day event with involvement by both students and faculty. All of these experiences have enhanced my ability to work a leadership position and to approach such a position with the responsible mindset needed to get things done.

2. Enthusiasm: My enthusiasm and positive approach to everything I do and everyone I meet leaves a lasting impression. I feel this position requires someone who gets along well with others in order to keep strong connections with RUDU alumni and to work with them to foster their involved with tournaments and keep them informed of current events. I have always been an optimist and have brought a positive atmosphere to any groups and organizations I have been a part of. My enthusiasm ensures my commitment to working this position and keeping a positive outlook toward making successful relationships with alumni.

3. Dedication: I always have and always will dedicate my time and energy on achieving my goals. I take pride in everything I do, no matter how small it might seem, which gives me strong concentration and organization when working on any given task. I take myself and my responsibilities seriously and I always maintain a strong commitment to anything I start until I have completed it. If elected to this position, I will dedicate myself fully to working with the other E-Board members, the Coach, and RUDU alumni in order to keep former RUDU debaters connected and involved with the current activities of the team, whatever they may be.

If elected as the Alumni Coordinator, I can assure you that I will be successful and I will complete the duties of the position with maturity, responsibility, and professionalism.

Alex Jubb
Hey everyone! For those of you who don’t know, my name is Alex and I’m a novice on the team. I’ve been to every meeting and almost every tournament this year. I’m running for an e-board position because I really care about the team and love debate in general. I’m well organized, punctual, and enjoy planning things. I’m a good fit for the alumni coordinator position because I enjoy reaching out to people and I think it will be awesome to have past debaters more involved in RUDU. I get along really well with everyone on the team and am a pretty regular figure at the debate house and other team functions. So yeah, go RUDU!

Rutgers Finishes 15th, 25th at Nationals, Elects New E-Board

RUDU members pose on a scenic overlook at West Point with their Nationals and "OTY" (of the Year) awards, which were distributed at Nationals. Left to right: Farhan Ali (with Rutgers' 5th College of the Year award), Gordon Morrisette, Ashley Novak (with her 2nd Novice of the Year award), Chris Bergman, Dave Reiss (with his 7th Team of the Year award), Kyle Bomeisl (with his and Dave's 15th Team at Nationals award and his 7th Team of the Year award), Bhargavi Sriram, Adam Bomeisl, and Storey Clayton (with his Distinguished Service Award).

The Rutgers University Debate Union (RUDU) completed its most successful season in history with a break to National octofinals, the first break at the APDA National Championships in Rutgers’ history.

Here are the official accomplishments from the 2011 National Championships at West Point:
David Reiss & Kyle Bomeisl – 15th team [break to octofinals] Farhan Ali & Chris Bergman – 25th team
Kyle Bomeisl – 16th speaker

The two teams in the top 25 capped a year of incredible ranking and accomplishment for Rutgers, a team who’d never even qualified someone for the National tournament until this year. Rutgers was joined only by the College of William and Mary as public schools advancing to the 16-team elimination rounds.

Coach Storey Clayton was also honored with one of two Distinguished Service Awards for 2011, the highest honor conveyed by the league for service and dedication to the league’s goals and functioning.

The official season of competition is now over, with debates resuming in just four months at the beginning of September. However, RUDU has a busy week in the meantime with three public debates (Project Civility tonight, King’s/Queen’s at Columbia on Friday, and Rutgers Day on Saturday) and elections yesterday.


Elections for the new Executive Board for Fall 2011 were held last night in Scott 115. Turnout was high and debate was heated as several candidates vied for each of the four mainline E-Board positions.

Congratulations to the Fall 2011 RUDU E-Board:
President Chris Bergman
Vice President Nisha Kumar
Treasurer Ashley Novak
Public Relations Chair Stephen Yellin

Tournament Director, a position ancillary to the Executive Board, will be determined in the near future. At the National Championships, Rutgers was honored with an “unopposed” tournament for February 2012, meaning it will be the only scheduled APDA tournament on its weekend. This is the first time Rutgers will ever have held an unopposed APDA tournament.

Fall 2011 E-Board Campaign Statements & Amendments

Elections are Upcoming for the Fall 2011 E-Board!

Elections will be held on Tuesday, April 26, 2011 at 9:00 PM in Scott Hall 115. The deadline to declare your candidacy for a position has passed. “Drop-downs” will be allowed – if you run for any office and do not win, you may enter the election for a lower position. You may skip a position as you drop-down (e.g. drop-down from President straight to Treasurer). All positions are mutually exclusive from other positions, except for Tournament Director and Webmaster, both of which may be held in addition to any other position. Candidate statements are below.

In addition to E-Board elections, amendments to the Bylaws may also be voted upon and passed on the April 26th Elections Meeting. Coach Storey Clayton is proposing three such amendments.

Here’s who’s running – candidate statements appear below with each position. Please remember that “drop-downs” are allowed:

President: Chris Bergman, Kyle Bomeisl, Bhargavi Sriram
Vice Preisdent: Adam Bomeisl, Nisha Kumar
Treasurer: Ashley Novak
PR Chair: Alex Weiss, Stephen Yellin
Tournament Director: Bhargavi Sriram, Stephen Yellin
Webmaster: None (indicating likely support for the position’s removal – see below)

Here are the E-Board positions, with candidate statements for each:


The President is the leader of the team, responsible for running meetings in conjunction with the Coach, communicating with the team and other member schools of APDA, and coordinating and submitting all registrations for tournaments in a timely fashion. The President must also attend all APDA Meetings as the voting member for RUDU, or designate someone to do so in the case of their absence. The President may have many additional duties arise over the course of their tenure in the same capacity of representing the team both within and outside of the university.

Chris Bergman
Hey everyone, I’m running for President. President is a very demanding position—it requires timeliness, because if you miss a deadline for pre-reg, the team has difficulty sending teams to tournaments. It requires experience running meetings, because the President starts every meeting. It requires being the Rutgers team representative to the rest of APDA. And it requires the ability to learn from mistakes so that if anything goes wrong, it doesn’t go wrong in the future.

Timeliness

I’ve shown I can do things on time in the past and I will continue to do so. To give a few examples, I said I would reg our tournament for spring scheduling, and I did so within 2 hours; I registered rooms for our tournament 2 full months in advance, which is unprecedented (usually it’s done less than a month in advance); I purchased trophies weeks in advance; and I’m always on time for practices and tournaments. Ask yourself: if the Presidency requires meeting a deadline, who on the team would you trust? I’m confident you can trust me with this.

Experience

I have had a lot of experience in managing and running clubs in the past. In high school, I was the president of the Debate Club, Future Problem Solving Club, and the Federal Reserve Challenge Club. Additionally, I was the Vice President of French Club and National Honors Society. Finally, I was on the E-Board as the Tournament Director this year and, with one main mistake in registering for rooms, I ran the tournament pretty well. This shows I’ve run clubs before, I’ve helped manage this club this year, and I’m qualified to run meetings.

Rutgers Representative to APDA

Everyone on APDA knows me, and I have almost as many connections to other teams as Storey. When people talk about the Rutgers team, I’m one of the first people they think of because I take time to talk to other teams, and I’ll be able to represent the team as the President effectively.

Ability to Recognize and Learn from Mistakes

As Tournament Director, I did a good job with one major flaw: although I got rooms way in advance, I didn’t book any lecture halls. I learned from this, and I worked to get lecture halls with Storey and Dave. What does this mean? I’m able to say that I did something wrong, and will work to be better in the future. Ask yourself, will this candidate admit to making a mistake? Will this candidate take responsibility for his actions? If you answer “no” for a candidate for President, don’t vote for them. Vote for me.

Kyle Bomeisl
I’m not crazy about flowery speeches, so I’m just going to lay out the unique things that separate me from the other presidential candidates:

(1) My Role as Treasurer – At the beginning of my term as Treasurer we had a budget of $1,578 per year. We are now at about $30,000 per year plus the fleet of vans, the debate building, and Storey’s package complete with salary, office space, and other amenities. The strategy I pursued as Treasurer was to include evidence of why funding meant debate success by showing how many tournaments, speaker awards, and top finishes we won per dollar. For example, on the Spring Budget Application I attached a chart that showed how many awards we won per dollar (for example: “for the $800 the University spent sending us to George Washington University we were able to win the tournament, place a team 3rd, win 5th speaker and 9th speaker, and advance to 3rd Team of the Year. That’s a drop in the bucket for the greatest honors Rutgers has to show!”.) After submitting such documentation with the budget for Spring Semester, I was contacted by Dean Anne Hull and VP of Student Affairs Gregory Bleming congratulating us on our success and thanking us for Project Civility. I was able to convince them to give us Winnants Hall on Old Queen’s Campus and additional funding for our tournament. I kept them posted on our success and told them exactly how every dollar was spent and showed them our rankings at every tournament to show them the massive returns every dollar yielded. This began a fruitful relationship between the eboard and the Board of Governors that culminated in Mr. Gregory Bleming offering a meeting to David, myself, Storey, and Farhan. It was at this meeting that we were given virtually limitless funding from central to compete at tournaments, a job position for Storey, a fleet of vans, and now an actual debate building. I would like to continue this tradition of representing us to the University administration as a valuable empirically proven asset as president.

It is also important to note here the skill and dedication necessary to perform the job of Treasurer even adaquetely. To reimburse one check the following steps are necessary:

(1) collect and collate receipts by person

(2) verify that the receipts were expended on valid debate activities (otherwise there would be disciplinary action for me)

(3) Fill out a PERR form, attach the receipts after photocopying them and storing them on record

(4) Take the completed PERR form to Kevin Killen at the Busch Student Center and have him approve all expenditures

(5) Take these approved forms to the SAC on College Ave and have the validate and file all of these request, additional paperwork such as invoices are often requested at this step

(6) Come back to the SAC in 14 business days to pick up the checks, and then distribute them

** All this is just check reimbursement, I also have to fill out budgets, go to RUSA appeals meetings, pay for tournaments (which is similar to the check reimbursement procedure), and complete periodic audits from SABO. Unlike our previous Treasurers, SABO considers me to have a “perfect record,” in other words, no errors have been made in performing these tasks and all financial records have been reconciled perfectly whenever I have been audited. You can see all of this information in our facebook group as I have publicly posted it.

(2) Eboard experience- I was webmaster and PR Chair in my sophomore and junior year and Treasurer this year. As webmaster and PR chair, I recruited a large amount of promising novices who now form our sophomore and junior class. I have been to a tremendous amount of eboard meetings, understand how the board functions well, and have a wealth of experience in everything from rechartering to amending our constitution.

(3) Commitment to the Team – I have been part of this team for three years and have participated and sacrificed avidly for it. I have also been a responsible member and eboard member and have not ever been cited for breaking codes of conduct. That not only shows that I am reliable and dedicated, but that I genuinely love debate and the Rutgers Debate Union. Believe me, I live and breathe it. As far as I remember, I only missed 1-2 meetings for things like exams in this entire three year stretch. Throughout my three years, I have
(end of 750-word limit)

Bhargavi Sriram
Hey everyone! I’m Bhargavi Sriram and I’m running for President Of RUDU. I’m asking for your vote for three reasons : I promise to be dedicated, effective and a great leader. (Also, because I’m awesome but we can discuss that later.)

Dedication: Over the past two years, I have been increasingly involved with the Debate Union. I have attended every tournament possible, this year, and I’ve actively attended team activities. I think the dedication I have shown gives me a great advantage were I to become President. I have had two years of experience during when I have seen mistakes being made and two years during when I have learnt from those mistakes. Any decision I will make will be backed by that experience. This is also important because The President will be the voting member on APDA. I have made it a point to drag myself and other team members to every APDA meeting at any tournament I have been to; be it an equity forum or an APDA board meeting. As an emerging superpower (oh yeah) on APDA , it is imperative that RUDU be well represented at meetings. I think it would be fair to say that I’ve shown more enthusiasm about these, fairly long, kinda boring meetings, than anyone else on the club. With me as President, I will make sure that RUDU is never given raw deal.

Effectiveness: Apart from Debate, I have had positions of power at other organizations. I was the Public Relations chair my freshman year and then I was voted in again to become treasurer for Roosevelt Institute. I was always very good at my job and I also learned my way around the RU Screw. Other leadership experience on campus will ensure that I don’t need to be “broken in” once I start as President; my learning will be awesome I have also been a very effective and active contributor to RUDU over the past year. Any opportunity that I come by, that could benefit the club, has been posted on our Forum : application for office space, activities for Rutgers Day etc, I will continue to be as effective and pro-active as President.

Leadership: Lastly, You should vote for me because I will be a great Leader. I have been very encouraging to all Novices this year: I went with Danial and Antonio to their very FIRST tournaments and I have also partnered with Arbi, Nisha and Adam. No other Varsity member has reached out to Novices quite like that. Novice-retention is a very important part of our club’s health and with me, that base will always be covered.

Chris Bergman won the Presidency.


The Vice President is responsible for all paperwork related to the team, in addition to taking over for the President should they be unable to serve for brief or extended periods of time and supporting the President in all their duties as needed. This person is also responsible for all internal team communication, especially bi-weekly reminders about upcoming meetings and tournaments to all members of the RUDU mailing list. Timely submission of forms each week and corresponding attention to detail are a must. (If the second amendment proposed below passes, this person will also be responsible for keeping attendance at each meeting.)

Adam Bomeisl
I, Adam “A-bomb” Bomeisl, will be running for the RUDU e-board office of Vice President. I’m sure most of you know who I am, but if not here you can read a few things about me and the reasons why I’m running for Vice President. I’m a freshman (novice) who has been with the club since the beginning of this year. I have had a pretty successful year, and this was due mostly to the time I gave up for the club with going to meetings, writing cases, and getting valuable experience at tournaments. The point is that I am very much willing to give up my time for RUDU which make me an ideal e-board candidate. Also, I feel that it is important to have qualified, younger members on the e-board and not necessarily have all older varsity members running the team. Younger members can offer a valuable perspective, and we are the future of RUDU. We can be voted in for many terms which offers the club continuity in its administration, and we can collect a good amount of experience which are advantages that older members do not possess. Also it encourages new members to be more involved in the team because it sends the message that we value them quite a bit. Furthermore, we are not a very likely group to have the deadly disease senioritis.

From what I understand, the Vice President has to manage paper work, deal with all inter-team communication (like sending out reminders about meetings twice a week), take attendance (provided that the necessary amendment passes), and fill in for the President if he/she is unable to perform his/her duties. The fact that I’m at nearly every meeting is certainly a plus for taking attendance during the meetings. I would certainly be willing to deal with paper work, and to send out bi-weekly reminders to all of our team members. However, in addition to these responsibilities, the Vice President also has derivative duties (tasks given to him/her by the team). I am certainly willing and able to help out the team in any way, and that includes helping the other e-board members with projects for the debate team. So hopefully you feel that I’m a qualified candidate for Vice President, but in the event that I am not elected to this position, I do intend to drop down to run for other positions. This is because I wish to help give back to the organization that has helped make my freshman year of college be awesome, and I’ll ultimately leave it up to those who are voting to decide which position I would be most fit to serve in. And of course feel free to e-mail me at abomeisl@eden.rutgers.edu, facebook message me, or talk to me if you have any questions or want to know where I stand on proposed amendments that will be voted on at the same time as elections.

Nisha Kumar
I have three reasons why you should vote for me as VP

1. Commitment and Time Management skills: With exceptions on those days I have class, I am on time for all meetings, and for tournaments. I am also great with organizing my time. Even with a crazy science schedule and other activities, I still find a great deal of time to devote to debate, and have made sure I go to every tournament that I have a free weekend. I also believe I’ll have even more time to devote to the extra responsibilities next year due to the completion of orgo and my MCATS (yay!) I’m also great with deadlines and getting things done: never in my college career have I had to pull an all-nighter.
2. Organized and responsible: I am very good at organizing, from schedules, to events, and this could include meetings and other responsibilities with debate. I am also responsible when it comes to getting things done in a proper and timely manner.
3. I <3 people: I work well with everyone on the team, and am pretty easy to work with myself. I also have a certain level of familiarity with the system at Rutgers for organizing trips and such. I also think this can translate into communicating with the team via e-mails and announcements.

Nisha Kumar won the Vice Presidency.


The Treasurer is responsible for all financial matters related to the team, including and especially registration fees for tournaments, reimbursement of team members for gas and tolls, income from tournament hosting and possibly other events as they may arise, and submitting the semesterly budget to RUSA. This position carries an immense amount of responsibility and timeliness and attention to detail are critical.

Ashley Novak
The reason I’m running for treasurer is that treasurer is a difficult position with many requirements. It is one of the most important positions on the team because we do not want a reputation for registration always being late and not being paid, and no one wants to wait months for reimbursements. However, it requires a huge time commitment, organization, and responsibility in order to ensure that both people on our team and other schools are paid on time. I am committed to the team, and have shown the motivation to do this job well: I have only missed one tournament, I spend a lot of time outside of practice casing and working on other things for debate, I drive almost every weekend, and at our tournament I did a lot of things that people neglected to do, like printing out the tournament packets. I also am organized enough to ensure no one’s receipts are lost- have you seen my casebook? It’s color coded and arranged in order of most important to least important (chicken!). Vote for me for Treasurer because I can bring this organization and motivation to the E-Board.

Ashley Novak was elected Treasurer.


The Public Relations Chair is responsible for communicating the success of the team to the outside world and the internal world of the Rutgers campus. This position involves regular communication with the Targum and other media outlets and involves discussion of the team’s activities and accomplishments in an exciting and nuanced way that promotes an interest in the team. This position is also responsible for recruiting from the student body through printed materials, direct communication, and events.

Alex Weiss
Friends, it gives me great pleasure to submit to you my candidacy for Public Relations chair. I have significant experience in public relations and feel I would ably and effectively serve the Debate Union. I have written proposals and managed accounts for my mother’s advertising firm that services such clients as The Promenade. I have also co-created and managed the public relations of a student group seeking to get faster internet, getting a thousand members and many write-ups and interviews with the Targum and culminating in a successful campaign and policy change. I have ideas for the marketing of the Debate Union that I will share with you all on election night and I hope to get your feedback and suggestions before eventually implementing them if I am given the privilege of serving as your Public Relations chair.

Thank you for your interest and I know that together we can field the largest pool of debate talent on APDA,
Alex Weiss

Stephen Yellin
stephenyellin@yahoo.com

Stephen here, aka “That Eloquent Old Guy” (copyright Alex Taubes) and “that British guy” (copyright Emilia Bates). Apparently Sesenu has a nickname for me as well: “That SOB who wrecked my Don Quixote case”.

Anyway, I’m running for Public Relations Chair for 3 very good On-Case reasons:

1. I have extensive experience with PR. I served in a similar capacity in 4 different clubs at Drew University (undergrad), and was very successful in getting students and community members to attend events and get involved. When I was “Publicity Head” for That Medieval Thing (TMT), for example, first-year membership in the club doubled from the previous year, allowing TMT to continue after my large senior class graduated.
2. I am creative and open-minded in my work. I am great at writing press releases and making pitches to groups, based on 6 years of political consulting and similar election activities. I’ve had my writing published in several academic and literary journals (including at Rutgers this spring), so I know how to get a good message out there. I also have a wide-ranging imagination when it comes to cases, and would apply the same creativity to our PR efforts.
3. I am a “team player” by nature. When I’ve been in a leadership role, I listen carefully to what is discussed and offer my thoughts as to what we can improve on as a club. I stay “on the ball” when I have work to do, and can be depended on to be on time with the work assigned me done well. I will be similarly proactive as your PR Chair.

I would now like to address some Off-Case points made by my hypothetical opponent(s) as to why I should not be elected:
1. I make horrible, no-good, very bad puns. I plead “guilty” to this charge, on the grounds that a lesser sentence will enable me to avoid the death PUNalty. 🙂 That being said, I pledge if elected to avoid making bad puns (unless permitted) while in RUDU meetings.
2. I’m not fun to play Scrabble with. This is factually untrue, as Chris Bergman successfully bested me on my birthday at Swarthmore. Clearly, then, I can be beaten by others at Scrabble, meaning that a fun game can easily occur. Plus, you never know what 7-letter word could come up in an APDA round, right?
3. I ‘m running for elected office. This is an actual concern you might have. One issue is that I am not sure if I will be actually running or not come September (I’ll know in June). Even if I do run, however, I will still be here for Tuesday/Thursday practice rounds, and would return to the debate circuit in November. In short, I don’t believe my campaign schedule would interfere with my RUDU duties if elected.
I would also like to add that, if you believe me especially qualified, I would like to serve as one of our Tournament Directors next year. As that post is largely a spring 2012 issue, I would certainly be free to do the job. More importantly, I believe that I can handle the logistical and publicity portions of the tournament with ease, as part of my PR duties. I have organized fundraisers, press conferences and publicity stunts for candidates in the past, and would be able to line all our proverbial ducks in a row well ahead of time. Don’t count on a 4-room GA issue with me (and my partner) in charge.

In closing, I want to say that I love this club a great deal; were it not for RUDU, I don’t know how I would get through the stress of grad school. You guys are friendly, witty, kind and considerate, and you have frequently raised my spirits when they were very low. If you elect me your Public Relations Chair (and maybe co-TD while you’re at it), I will do my best to give back to this club in whatever ways I can.

Stephen Yellin
16th Baron Zwillenberg (e-mail me to find out why I’m a Latvian Baron)

Stephen Yellin was elected Public Relations Chair.


The Tournament Director is responsible for running the annual tournament, usually in February. This involves a great deal of advanced work and planning, including room reservations, housing coordination, recruitment from APDA schools, recruitment of dino judges, and procurement of a good theme and quality entertainment. Multiple people may choose to run for this position together as a joint-ticket.

Bhargavi Sriram

Stephen Yellin

Adam Bomeisl & Bhargavi Sriram were unanimously chosen as Co-Tournament Directors.


The Webmaster is responsible for updating and maintaining the team’s website.*

The amendment eliminating Webmaster was passed unanimously.

Proposed Amendments

Each of these will be voted on prior to the election of E-Board positions. However, any changes enacted will take effect after the E-Board elections and not impact the voting, eligibility, etc. of those running or voting in this election.

Timing of Elections, E-Board Terms
Starting in 2011-2012, RUDU Executive Board terms shall be for one year over the course of a calendar year rather than an academic year. Elections will be held in December for the following year’s term. This will facilitate smoother transitions between E-Boards, enable active freshmen to begin serving the team early, and prevent second-semester seniors from having responsibilities on the team. The E-Board elected in April 2011 would thus serve for Fall 2011 only with new elections in December 2011 for calendar year 2012.
Proposed by Storey Clayton.
This amendment passed unanimously.

Membership and Voting Requirements
In order to be considered a full member of RUDU, an individual must attend at least 5 (five) meetings throughout a semester and at least 2 (two) APDA-sanctioned tournaments throughout a semester. Anyone not meeting these stipulations in the prior semester will be unable to vote in elections the following term. To facilitate this, the Vice President will be responsible for taking attendance at every meeting of RUDU or designating someone else to do so in their absence.
Proposed by Storey Clayton.
This amendment was modified to require 10 (ten) meetings and zero (0) tournaments and passed by a simple majority.

*Reconstitution of the Executive Board
The Webmaster position will be eliminated from the Executive Board since the Coach has taken responsibility for this as part of his full-time duties with the university.
Proposed by Storey Clayton.
This amendment passed unanimously.

2010-2011 Executive Board

The 2010-2011 Executive Board of the Rutgers University Debate Union

David Reiss is the President of the Debate Union. A senior majoring in English, Reiss has been with the team since 2007. The most successful debater in RUDU history, he finished 2010-2011 as the 14th ranked speaker on APDA, and part of the 7th ranked team with regular partner Kyle Bomeisl. He and Kyle have made finals at three tournaments this year, winning two of them. David aspires to write fiction after graduating from Rutgers.

Farhan Ali is the Vice President of the Debate Union. A senior majoring in Political Science and Middle Eastern Studies, Ali joined the team in 2008. The first RUDU debater ever to win a top speaker award at a tournament, he is the 43rd ranked speaker on APDA, and part of the 36th ranked team with regular partner Chris Bergman. He and Chris have made elimination rounds at three tournaments this year, including a 5-0 record at NYU. Farhan plans to work for a year in India before attending law school after graduation.

Kyle Bomeisl is the Treasurer of the Debate Union. A senior majoring in Physics, Bomeisl started debating for Rutgers in 2008. The second most successful debater in RUDU history, he finished 2010-2011 as the 30th ranked speaker on APDA, and part of the 7th ranked team with regular partner David Reiss. He and David have made finals at three tournaments this year, winning two of them. Kyle is planning on taking a fifth year at Rutgers before going to law school.

Krishna Kavi is the Public Relations Chair of the Debate Union. A junior majoring in Economics and Political Science, Kavi joined the team in 2009. She finished the year the 74th ranked speaker on APDA, and part of the 127th ranked team with regular partner Bhargavi Sriram. Krishna intends to pursue a law degree after graduating from Rutgers next year.

Chris Bergman is the Tournament Director of the Debate Union’s annual tournament, held this year on February 25-26, 2011. A sophomore majoring in Electrical and Computer Engineering, Bergman joined RUDU in 2009. He finished the year part of two teams in the top forty in the APDA rankings, ranked 17th with Ashley Novak and 36th with Farhan Ali. Between the two partnerships, he made the elimination rounds at six tournaments this year. Chris is undecided on his career plans after Rutgers.

Gordon Morrisette is the Webmaster of the Debate Union’s website. A sophomore in the School of Arts and Sciences, Morrisette joined the Union in 2010. He finished 2010-2011 as the 11th ranked novice speaker on APDA (by half a point behind 10th!) and part of the 96th ranked varsity team with regular partner Ashley Novak. Gordon has yet to choose a career path for life after graduation.

Storey Clayton is the Coach of the Debate Union. A graduate of Brandeis University in 2002, Clayton began coaching at Rutgers in 2009. During his APDA career, he won the North American Championship (2001), was the 2nd ranked speaker (2002), part of the 3rd Team at the National Championships (2001), 4th ranked novice (1999), and part of the 5th ranked team (2000). Since arriving at Rutgers, the team as a whole has gone from unranked in the prior eight years to 24th in 2010 and 5th in 2011. Storey is currently coaching full-time and writing novels on the side, one of which was published in 2003 and two more of which have been completed in the last 18 months.