"As a full-time state activities association administrator, as someone who coaches and has coached at the middle, high school, and collegiate levels, and as a former NSDA staff member, I bring unique perspective to serving on the NSDA Board of Directors."
"I have heavily promoted Congressional Debate, but I have coached everything from Program Oral Interpretation to Policy Debate, from Humorous Interpretation to World Schools Debate."
^ Family wedding photo, 2015.
Since 1997, Adam has worked in the fields of communication and theatre education, as well as public relations, government affairs and politics. Since 2014, he has been full-time Executive Director of the Wisconsin High School Forensic Association, a nonprofit organization that sponsors programming in middle and high school speech, debate, theatre, and film. In 2018, he was elected to the National Speech & Debate Association Board of Directors, as well as the National Federation of State High School Associations' (NFHS) Speech, Debate, and Theatre Advisory Committee.
Adam volunteer coaches part-time and online for Spring Woods High School in Texas, and is Curriculum Coordinator for Congressional Debate with the nonprofit Harvard Debate Council Summer Workshops, as well curating CongressionalDebate.org. He also previously coached with Cypress Creek High School in Texas.
Adam previously was Programs & Education Coordinator for the National Speech & Debate Association. There, he coordinated development of an international public speaking and debating curriculum, which he helped implement in the People's Republic of China, where he taught for a semester (fall 2013). He coached speech/forensics and taught Public Speaking at Ripon College. He also ran and developed the National Middle School Tournament from a modest, self-contained event to the large-scale one paired with the high school National Tournament. He also organized the National Congress, Student of the Year program, and a number of other educational partnerships. "In each leadership effort," he said, "I aimed to be as inclusive as possible, to overcome barriers coaches and students face."
For 11 years, Adam directed the speech and debate program at Rufus King International School in Milwaukee, WI, serving in leadership and service roles in a number of professional organizations. He also taught International Baccalaureate Theatre and served on the Board of Directors for the Milwaukee Shakespeare Company.
An author of several books, articles and guides, Adam also has led several professional development sessions, as well as academic presentations on the benefits of speech, debate, and theatre education. See "Publications and Presentations," below.
Adam holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Communication -- Public Campaigns from Carroll University, and was licensed to teach at Marquette University. Additionally, he has taken several graduate-level courses, including on the "Teaching for Understanding" framework with Harvard Graduate School of Education's Project Zero think tank.
Adam was married in August 2015, in the First Congregational, United Church of Christ Church in Ripon, WI, immediately next door to Ripon College's East Hall, where the National Forensic League was founded in 1925. He lives in La Crosse, WI with his husband, Scott Baker -- a professor of Educational Studies and former speech and debate coach -- and their son, Ethan.
"I am a speech and debate geek! At left, I am pictured with the granddaughter of Bruno Jacob (National Forensic League founder) and the late Lyn Luce, a coach and educator I admire deeply. To the right is a picture from my wedding day, which included a tour of the National Office in Ripon!"