Roy Romanow


12th Premier of Saskatchewan


"As a student, I represented the University of Saskatchewan in championship debates. I learned to organize my thoughts, to put my points across in a clear and concise manner and to concentrate on the key elements of my opponent's arguments. Through this process I gained confidence in my ability to effectively make a case for what I believe."

"The proficiency in debate that I gained as a student has served me well in my poliltical career, particularly in the often passionate arguments in the Legislature, and I would wholeheartedly encourage all young people to participate in the debate and speech arts. The communication skills learned will benefit you in any walk of life."


Rex Murphy

Newfoundland Broadcaster and Columnist

"Debating is a sport. It trains the mind in readiness, agility, and precision. It is also the most intense 'venue' for the exploration of words arranged and deployed for their argumentative and persuasive force. Logic, Rhetoric, two odd companions, meet in debate."

"It has a subsidary value, which I am reluctant to mention because it might be thought 'relevant', and that value is debate's ability to inject confidence and self assurance. Mainly, though, I would emphasize it is fun."


Dr. Morris Shumiatcher

O.C., Q.C., D. Jur.

"Of all the gifts that man enjoys, none is so precious as speech. It distinguishes us from all other living creatures. It is the expression out of which our personality in its most intimate form emerges and it works its wonders or wreaks its havoc upon the world about us.

If our eyes are the windows of the soul, our lips and tongue are the light that illuminates it, so that our spirit may be perceived by others.

In Prometheus Unbound, Shelley and of that great gift -

"He gave man speech, and speech created thought

Which is the measure of the universe."


All of us who speak have come to know what Shelley meant: that while we speak, we generate new and unexpected ideas. This does not mean we should start talking without knowing something about the things we have to say - like the student, who, when asked a question, said, "I don't know what I think until I have heard myself saying it." Along that road lies disaster. But having thought what we might say, the very act of speaking what we have thought, often generates new ideas and fresh expressions that are born out of the very words we utter.

When thoughtful people debate, debate creates new thoughts. That is why, for millenia, men and women who reason, have embraced debate as among the greatest and most rewarding of the arts."

November, 1982


Willis S. McLeese

CSDF Founder and Patron

"it is obvious that Saskatchewan is a leader in this wonderful system, and I am very much in admiration of your great work. Hopefully, debate will continue to develop and flourish across Canada with your great support."

Read more about Mr. McLeese at the CSDF website.

Read more about SEDA members who have received the McLeese Award.

SEDA's Honour Roll recognizes the outstanding achievements of its members.

Visit the Centennial tab to learn more about SEDA volunteers honoured with the 2005 Centennial Medallion.

Who won top speaker in...? Check out the 1985-2007 Honour Roll for a trip back to the olde glory days!

Do you know a debate alumnus who is doing something amazing? Let us know! We'd love to recognize their contributions to their current communities and highlight how debate has helped them meet their goals.

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