Georgia Speaker of the Year

Frankling Smoltz

2012 Georgia Speaker of the Year recipient Mayor Shirley Franklin and Hall of fame pitcher John Smoltz with Atlanta Urban Debate League students.

Every year since 1967, the Barkley Forum has honored an outstanding communicator with the presentation of the Georgia Speaker of the Year Award. The recipient is honored at an annual banquet. The banquet is attended by administrators, faculty, and staff from the Emory community, the high school forensics community, and Barkley Forum students and alumni, to honor the power of communication in intelligent, responsible, and effective civic speech. The Georgia Speaker of the Year represents these skills in the public sphere.


1967 Charles Longstreet Weltner 1968 William H. Burson 1969 Ralph E. McGill
1970 Elliot H. Levitas 1971 Bishop John Owen Smith 1972 Grace T. Hamilton
1973 Ellis McDougal 1974 Andrew Young 1975 Jimmy Carter
1976 Benjamin Elijah Mays 1977 Robert Shaw 1978 Horace T. Ward
1979 Zell Miller 1980 Gudmund Vigtel 1981 Mills B. Lane III
1982 Wyche Fowler 1983 Lewis Grizzard 1984 Ted Turner
1985 John Portman 1986 Fletcher Wolfe 1987 Thomas Glenn Pelham
1988 Robert Stephen Kahn 1989 Jane O. Hansen 1990 Robert DeHaan
1991 Edward Turner 1992 Leah Sears 1993 Frances Pauley
1994 Kenny Leon 1995 Robert Benham 1996 David Satcher
1997 Austin Ford 1998 Johnetta Cole 1999 William Chace
2000 Roy E. Barnes 2001 Jane Fonda 2002 Rosalynn Carter
2003 Renee Glover 2004 Max Cleland 2005 Thurbert Baker
2006 Mike Lukovich 2007 Bob Barr 2008 Arthur M. Blank
2009 Vacated 2010 Andrea Young 2011 Sig Moseley
2012 Shirley Franklin 2013 Rev. Dr. Bernard Lafayette, Jr. 2014 Doug Shipman
2015 Melissa Maxcy Wade 2016 City of Decatur 2017 Carol Anderson
2018 Jeff Graham 2019 Sally Q. Yates 2020 Keisha Lance Bottoms
2021 Dr. Carlos del Rio 2022 Gabrielle Claiborne 2023 Jon Ossoff