By Kris Freeman for White House High School
White House senior Danielle Williams took home first place in poetry in the National Speech and Debate season opening tournament at the University of Kentucky on Sept. 11-13.
The students competed in a virtual competition from Sumner County, gathering together as a speech team with Coach Emily Higdon. The University of Kentucky held the tournament virtually due to COVID-19 restrictions. White House finished third overall as a speech team, conducting speeches and ceremonies via pre-recorded video and Zoom.
Williams won the poetry competition, but classmates Madison Freeman and Rebekah Langford joined her as top three finishers in their respective categories. Freeman placed third in informative speaking and Langford placed third in humorous interpretation.
As a result of their finishes at this national tournament, all three seniors qualified for a spot in the National Speech and Debate Tournament of Champions in the spring of 2021 in the category of their placement in this event.
Williams competed in the National Speech and Debate National Tournament as a sophomore, and Langford as a sophomore and junior, and Freeman as a junior. Langford and Freeman are coming off an All-American recognition as juniors, and Freeman was a state champion as a sophomore. The Tennessee state tournament was cancelled this spring, and nationals were held virtually.
Rebekah Langford, Danielle Williams and Madison Freeman (L-R)