About NFA

 In 1971, Dr. Seth Hawkins, concluding that the needs of the forensics community warranted a National I.E. Tournament  invented a national championship in individual events, declared it official by fiat and sent invitations.  The tournament featured Prose, Poetry, Extemporaneous, Impromptu, After-Dinner Speaking and Oratory.  The following 23 schools were in attendance:  American University (DC), Ball State University (IN), Defiance College (OH), Eastern Kentucky University, Eastern Michigan University, Evangel College (MO), Georgetown College (KY), Heidelberg College (OH), University of Kentucky, Lehigh University (PA), University of Southern Maine, University of Maryland, Miami University (OH), Niagara University (NY), Ohio University, Ohio Northern University, Purdue University (IN), Sheperd University (WV), Southern Connecticut State University, St John’s College (NY), St. Rose College (NY), West Chester University (PA) and Wright State University (OH).
In 1973, A draft constitution for the National Forensics Association was written in January to create a governing body for the I.E. Tournament.  The constitution was accepted at the tournament in April at Eastern Michigan University.

Governing Documents

Member Schools

National Council

PositionNameAffiliationTerm datesTerm lengthTerm
PresidentMegan KochIllinois State University2021-243 years1st
Past PresidentKaren MorrisUniversity of Wisconsin Eau Claire2021-24Until new president is electedN/A
Tournament DirectorJohn BoyerLafayette College2020-233 years1st
VP for AdministrationDawn LowryGeorge Mason University2020-233 years1st
VP for Professional RelationsNikki FreemanUniversity of Central Missouri2022-253 years2nd
SecretaryJulie WalkerSouthwest Minnesota State University2022-253 years1st
TreasurerSade BarfieldUniversity of Northern Iowa2021-243 years1st
At-largeJennifer TalbertOhio University2022-242 years2nd
At-largeJohn StanleyNorth Central College2022-242 years1st
At-largeDavid BowersMissouri Valley College2021-232 yearsCompleting vacated term
At-largeJoe GanttLewis and Clark University2021-232 years1st
Lincoln-Douglas Justin KirkUniversity of Nebraska Lincoln2021-243 years1st
Graduate Student Damon MitchellSan Diego State University2022-231 year1st
Sr. Student RepTerrence MayfieldIllinois State University2021-232 years1st
Jr. Student RepEm MarlowOhio University2022-242 years1st
Journal EditorDr. Justin RudnickMinnesota State University Mankato2021Until New Appointment
ParliamentarianDr. Jonathan CarterGeorgia Southwestern University2021Until New Appointment


Positions up for Election or Re-appointment in 2023.

  • VP for Tournament Administration
  • At-large – 2 open positions
  • Lincoln-Douglas Committee – 3 open positions
  • Graduate Student
  • Jr. Undergraduate Student
  • Student rep to the LD Committee
  • Tournament Director

*A national council member may be a non-forensic coach as long as that person is a member of the association. Please considering serving.


Standing Committees

Awards: The Awards Committee is charged with the following tasks: overseeing the selection of professional awards such as the Eddie Myers Distinguished Service Award, managing the cost and ordering of the National Championship Awards, and evaluation and implementing award changes for the Championship Tournament.

Constitution: The Constitution Committee is responsible for monitoring the NFA Constitution and Bylaws through the following activities: advise the NFA Executive Council and Membership on Constitutional and Bylaw concerns as they emerge; conduct regular audits of the governing documents to determine if current organizational practice is consistent with these documents; propose Constitution and Bylaw amendments when necessary; assist NFA members wishing to draft proposals (both general and Constitutional and Bylaw amendments) to help contextualize the proposals within the current governing documents

Elections: This Committee shall be responsible for ensuring that a full slate of qualified candidates runs for each office, verify elections and ballot results.

Ethics: This committee shall oversee the Code of Standards and the Code of Ethics that is enforced by the NFA National Council and NFA Tournament Committee. When necessary, the committee shall consider and propose changes to both codes

Equity, Diversity and Inclusivity: This committee is charged with monitoring and promoting NFA’s policies on equity, diversity, and inclusivity. We advise NFA on issues regarding bias and accessibility from the concerns of the membership. The Equity, Diversity, and Inclusivity Committee has created documents to help coaches and students navigate issues of access.

Extemporaneous: This committee shall create the extemporaneous topics for the National Championship Tournament.

Hall of Fame: This committee shall oversee the nomination and selection process for Hall of Fame membership, as well as the publicity and promotion of the Hall.

Impromptu: This committee shall create the impromptu topics for the National Championship Tournament

Research: This committee shall oversee all research to be conducted at the National Championship Tournament.

Social Media: This committee is charged with maintaining an NFA presence on social media channels.

Tournament: The constitution dictates the membership of this committee as the Tournament Director (chairs), the President and the Vice President for Administration

Lincoln-Douglas:  Elected from membership to oversee NFA LD Debate

Ad hoc Committees

  • Ad Hoc Committee on Student Wellness
  • Ad Hoc Committee to create survey on the relationship perception of NFA LD/IE
  • Ad Hoc Committee on Judge Training
  • Ad Hoc Committee on Program Promotion
  • Ad Hoc Committee to Review Octafinals and President’s Sweepstakes
  • Ad Hoc Committee on Online Tournaments


The National Forensics Association sponsors two prestigious awards:the Eddie Myers Distinguished Service Award and the Hall of Fame Award. 

Eddie Myers Distinguished Service

The Eddie Myers NFA Service Award in name in memory of Dr. Louis Edward Myers, NFA Tournament Director from 1997 to 2003. Nationally prominent as a forensics coach, he was awarded the NFA Distinguished Service Award by the NFA in 2003 and the NFA President’s Award for dedication in Service in 2002.   
DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSIONS: The deadline for the Eddie Myers award is March 15, 2023.
Eddie Myers NFA Distinguished Service Award Nominations must be sent to the chair of the Awards committee- Megan Koch.  

Hall of Fame

The Hall of Fame honors those students that made an impact while competing in forensics and continued to make an impact after leaving the activity.  Areas to consider are: forensics competitive excellence, forensics community citizenship, and forensics ambassadorship.
DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSIONS:The nomination deadline for the NFA Hall of Fame is January 15, 2023.

NFA Hall of Fame Nominations must be sent to Jennifer Talbert, Chair of the Hall of Fame Committee.

Equity, Diversity and Inclusion

The NFA embraces human diversity as a core value. We express this value best in the inclusion and affirmation of the various identity groups to which our members and participants belong. This commitment to inclusiveness embraces identities and social roles that arise from but are not limited to race, color, ethnicity, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, religion, or ability status. We affirm and uphold the right to basic human dignity and respect across these diverse forms of human expression.

NFA Social Groups