National Programs  /  URBAN DEBATER OF THE YEAR



The Urban Debater of the Year is awarded to a debater who:

  • Demonstrates commitment and dedication to debate
  • Improvement in their performance, in debate
  • Improvement in their performance in school
  • Academic excellence
  • Leadership in their school, urban debate league, and community.

 To be eligible for nomination, the debater must be:

  • A high school senior graduating between January-June 2019
  • An active competitor in their urban debate league this school year
  • An active competitor in their urban debate league last year
  • A student with a minimum cumulative GPA of at least 2.0. 


Nomination Process


Anyone (coaches, parents, league staff, judges, students, etc.) may nominate a debater. An individual may nominate more than one debater. Nominations must be submitted by web form on the NAUDL website. All leagues are strongly encouraged to nominate at least one urban debater for this award.


Selection Process and Scholarship


A selection committee of NAUDL board members and supporters will review the nomination materials and supplemental materials for each debater and judge the debaters on the selection criteria. In addition, the committee will consider each debater's communication skills, as demonstrated by the personal video. The winner, runners up and finalists will receive college scholarships. NAUDL will feature all finalists in its annual dinner book, on its website and in other promotional materials. 

UDNC Tournament


The Debater of the Year and their partner will automatically qualify to the 2018 Urban Debate National Championship Tournament.  The Debater of the Year will also deliver the Key Note address at the Annual Dinner preceding the tournament.

Application and Timeline


The Debater of the Year Application is available here.


January 3, 2019 – Application opens

February 8, 2019 – Application due

February 15, 2019 – Finalists announced and supplemental application opens

March 1, 2019 – Finalist applications due

March 11, 2019 – Debater of the Year announced

April 11, 2019 – Annual Dinner

April 12-14, 2019 – Urban Debate National Championship

If you have any questions please email: debateroftheyear@urbandebate.org

Previous Honorees

Renae Salunga- 2017 Urban Debater of the Year
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Renae’s address the 2017 NAUDL Annual Dinner after receiving her award.