The Pell Public Speaking Competition
The Madison County Education Foundation hosted the Pell Public Speaking Competition on January 25 in the Madison High School Auditorium. The number of entrants—15 in all—was the largest number of student participants ever engaged in this competition.
The first-place winner, Michael Broyles, delivered Harold Ickes’s speech, “What constitutes an American?” Broyles was awarded a cash prize of $700. The second prize was awarded to Ben Butterworth, who delivered Winston Churchill’s speech, “Blood, Sweat, and Tears” and was awarded $500. Molly Thomas delivered Nellie McClung’s speech, “Should Men Vote?” She was awarded third prize of $300.
Kevin Nguyen and Eli Priest both gave strong presentations of Ronald Reagan’s “Tear Down This Wall.” Steven Franklin reprised Martin Luther King’s inspirational, “I’ve Been to the Mountain” address; the speaker was featured at the Martin Luther King Commemoration at the Culpeper NAACP.
Hailey Helm delivered stirring words of Clara Barton’s “Women’s Suffrage Speech,” and Caleb Mayer shared Theodore Roosevelt’s understanding of “Strength and Decency.” Kathy Dyer spoke on “George Washington,” and Maya Powell delivered Hillary Clinton’s “United Nations Women Plenary Session Remarks.”
Samuel Decowski gave renewed energy to Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address, and Hannah Gessler showed us Susan B. Anthony’s position in “Women’s Right to Suffrage.” David Miller offered an interpretation of “What Constitutes an American.”
The time-span of these speeches captured one historical landmark after another. Kaitlyn Adams gave John F. Kennedy’s “Inaugural Address” and Drake Truman delivered Richard Nixon’s “Farewell Address.