TCC forensics team wins big in Peoria

November 13, 2017

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (November 13, 2017) – Tallahassee Community College’s forensics team maintained their history of success at the L. E. Norton Memorial tournament, the most prestigious fall semester speech competition in the country.

TCC finished as the top-scoring community college for the sixth time in the past seven years at the tournament, held November 4-5 at Bradley University in Peoria, Illinois. Second-year competitors Susan Liss, Samira Taylor and Jesselym Gonzalez swept the top three spots in community college and university novice pentathlon, a distinction reserved for students competing in five or more event categories.

In addition, TCC’s team of six students placed eighth overall in the field of 43 colleges and universities, many of which brought much larger contingents to the 70th annual Norton. The College ranked ahead of nearly three dozen schools, including Northwestern University, the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, the University of Illinois at Chicago, the University of Minnesota and the University of California, Berkeley.

The open division ranking is the second highest the team has ever achieved at the tournament, according to John Schultz, TCC director of forensics.

“These students work tirelessly in their pursuit of excellence,” said Schultz. “Their perpetual dedication to success never ceases to amaze me.”

In addition to winning top honors in pentathlon, Liss was named the tournament champion in Impromptu Speaking. Liss, Taylor and Gonzalez all advanced multiple events to elimination rounds.

Along with the three returning members, TCC was represented by first-year members Karis De Gannes, Kennedy Matthews and Paige Palmer. The team is coached by Schultz and Eva Nielsen-Parks, who serves as assistant director of forensics, as well as several program alumni.

For information, contact John Schultz at (850) 201-8037 or