Donald Dripps (WCAS80)

Don Dripps of St. Louis, Mo., joined the Northwestern debate team in school year 1976-77. Don was on the top two-person team at Northwestern for two years. As a junior, Don reached the finals of the National Debate Tournament with partner Mark Cotham.  As a senior, he won the National Debate Tournament with partner Tom Fulkerson, and was named second speaker.

In his junior year, Don debated with Mark Cotham. They won the Utah tournament by closing out the final round with Northwestern’s Chris Wonnell and Susan Winkler. They reached the final round at both Dartmouth and Baylor and lost in the quarter-finals of Kentucky and several other tournaments. Don and Mark reached the finals of the National Debate Tournament, where they lost 3-2 to a Harvard team they beat 3-0 in the preliminary rounds. Mark and Don went 7-l in the preliminary rounds of the NDT where they were second seed and captured more ballots (22 of 24) than any other team in NDT history.

In his senior year, Don debated with Tom Fulkerson. They finished third in the Kentucky round robin and second at the University of Kentucky tournament. Because of a family illness, Don did not debate again until after the Christmas holiday season. Don and Tom reached the final round at both the University of Southern California and California State-Fullerton tournaments, winning one and losing the other. They lost in the quarters at Harvard and Dartmouth. They then won the Baylor tournament and lost in the quarters at Kansas University’s Heart of America tournament. Don and Tom then went on to win the National Debate Tournament.