Aliso Niguel High School Debater Named Academic All-American

Regan Grishaber, 17, earns national success in argumentation, rhetoric. He is currently the No. 27 ranked Lincoln-Douglas debater in the nation.

Regan Grishaber, a senior at , has been named a National Forensic League Academic All-American in recognition of speech and debate excellence and academic success.

NFL students may be nominated for this prestigious award if they have a GPA of 3.7/4.0 or higher, and an ACT score of 27 or above or an SAT score of 2000 or more. Academic All-Americans must hold an NFL degree of Superior Distinction or higher, reflecting the attainment of 750 or more degree points earned through competition or service. Finally, they must demonstrate outstanding character and leadership.

“The Academic All-American Award speaks to the fact that a true forensics champion succeeds both in competition and in class,” NFL Executive Director J. Scott Wunn said. “Our top competitors are committed to excellence in everything they do, including school. Our office is proud to recognize the hard work and achievement of our Academic All-Americans.”

Regan, 17, is currently the No. 27 ranked Lincoln-Douglas debater in the nation. His success includes winning the Lexington Winter Round Robin, where he came out on top of a field of the nation’s top 14 individual debaters. In the main tournament, Regan reached the semifinals and was the top speaker. The semifinal appearance gave him four “bids” for the Tournament of Champions, held in May at the University of Kentucky. Just two are needed for full qualification.

Regan has won more than 67 percent of his debates in his short, two-year career, which began his junior year. Most top competitors begin their debate careers as freshmen or in middle school. This season, Regan has reached the octofinals at the New York City Invitational, the quarterfinals at the College Preparatory School tournament in Oakland and the David Damus Championships at the University of Southern California, and the semifinals at the Meadows School tournament in Las Vegas.

This past summer, he organized and ran a summer debate camp for students interested in the activity.

Lincoln-Douglas debate is a one-on-one style of competition that takes after the historic debates that took place between Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas during the 1858 Illinois senatorial campaign. In its current form, students switch between either side of a resolution from round to round, basing their arguments on the values supported by their side of the debate.


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