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Performing arts faculty member Debbie Simon was nominated into the Speech Hall of Fame in Massachusetts. A speech coach is nominated by her peers and then voted into the Hall of Fame by the Massachusetts Forensics League Board of Directors.

When she was inducted in the National Forensic League Hall of Fame in 2003, Debbie gave perspective on her accomplishment: “Coaching is not a one-person thing; it is beyond collaborative,” she said.

Her nomination to the Massachusetts Hall of Fame required, officially, at least 12 years of experience or more and significant contributions to the league. Debbie has served on the board for more than 20 years in many capacities— as president, vice president, secretary and treasurer.

“Debbie’s contributions to Milton Academy, especially to her students, dwarf anything on her impressive resume,” former Milton Speech Team member Josh Bone ’04 once said.

To skim the surface of that resume, Debbie has cocoached the Milton Academy Speech Team for 23 years. She has coached more than 20 individual National Catholic Forensic League (NCFL) and National Forensic League (NFL) Champions; she received the Bruno E. Jacob Coaching Award in Forensics, the NFL Double Diamond Coaching Award and the NFL Distinguished Service Key; and she’s received the NFL’s coach-of-year honors.

“One of the best parts of coaching is having one-on one time with students to create something from scratch,” Debbie has said. Debbie hosts more than 35 student tutorials per week, but students flock to her office for more than just tutorials.

Debbie has also spent many summers coaching and directing national speech camps. “For me the joy of coaching comes from the people I work with and their spirit. The whole team knows what they are striving for; but it’s not about winning, it’s about what we can accomplish together as a team,” said Debbie, after being inducted into the National Hall of Fame.

For more on Milton Speech Team, go to, then click on “clubs and organizations” then “speech team.”