Meet Our Staff

Among the staff for our institutes will be:

  • Brian Klarman, Associate Director of Debate at Emory University. Klarman has coached at Pace, Harvard-Westlake, North Broward High School, and Dartmouth College. Brian received a First-Round-At-Large Bid to the 2016 National Debate Tournament and qualified to the NDT each of his three years debating at Emory. While debating at Pace Academy, Brian twice qualified to the Tournament of Champions

  • Dr. Ed Lee, III, Senior Director of the Alben W. Barkley Forum for Debate, Deliberation, and Dialogue, which houses Emory’s nationally acclaimed debate team. He is a relentless advocate for public debate and dialogue.  Lee is a national media commentator for US presidential debates and the use of arguments in public discourse and is routinely seen on CNN discussing presidential debate strategies and their impact on national politics. In 2015 he received the Ross K. Smith National Coach of the Year award and is a three-time recipient of the James Unger Award, given to the coach of the best college debate team in the country

  • Dr. Mikaela Malsin, Director of Debate at Emory University. She is the former Director of Debate at Georgetown University.  Malsin previously coached at Wake Forest and the University of Georgia, where she earned her PhD in Communication. In her time coaching, she has worked with several First-Round-At-Large Bid teams at the National Debate Tournament, NDT finalists and other elimination round participants, winners of the Tournament of Champions, and many other successful teams at the high school and college level

  • Lydia Smith, Assistant Director of Campus Engagement at Emory University.  Lydia holds a B.S. in Public Policy with a concentration in Nonprofit Leadership from Georgia State University and a Master of Public Administration degree from Georgia College and State University. She is an Atlanta Urban Debate League alumnae and former Betty J. Maddox Fellow in the Barkley Forum for Debate, Deliberation, and Dialogue. Lydia leads the Emory Conversation Project, advises All Black Emory, and coordinates public debates on campus, and she will be the Director of the Fundamentals of Debate, Deliberation, and Dialogue program this summer

  • Dr. Becca Steiner, Assistant Director of Debate at Emory University.  She previously coached at the University of Georgia (where she earned her PhD in Communication), Wake Forest, and the University of Florida. She has coached several First-Round-At-Large teams to the National Debate Tournament, including the 2019 NDT finalists and the 2019 American Debate Association winner