Bob Shurtz has been teaching science and math and coaching speech and debate at Hawken School for over 30 years. He has been the Director of Speech and Debate since 1998. He has received his third diamond from the National Speech and Debate Association and is a member of the Ohio High School Speech League Hall of Fame. He has coached many state champions in Lincoln Douglas Debate, Public Forum, Policy Debate, and Congressional Debate as well as numerous students in the final round. He has also coached a national champion team in Public Forum and in Congress. A graduate of the University of Michigan with a master's degree in physics from Harvard University, Mr. Shurtz has received teaching awards from the Tandy Corporation, MIT, Stanford, and Williams College and has served as the Academic Director of the United States Physics Team. He is currently the Director of STEMM Pathways.
Chase Williams joined the Hawken Community in fall 2014 as Speech and Debate Specialist. Recognized by the National Speech and Debate Association as a one diamond coach, Chase has built an impressive coaching resume across the country. He has coached numerous state champions in Public Forum Debate, Congressional Debate, and Extemporaneous Speaking. He has also coached students to national success, including an Impromptu Speaking national champion, a Dramatic Interpretation runner-up, and the 2016 USA Debate World Schools Invitational runner-up team from the North Coast District, as well as numerous late and final round appearances at national invitational tournaments across the country.
Chase graduated from Arizona State University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science. Prior to coming to Hawken, Chase worked as a research and communications specialist for political campaigns across the country. He is an avid Seattle Seahawks fan and has earned a reputation as Hawken Athletics’ “Super Fan” – attending games of every sport on campus. In addition to his work with the Speech and Debate team, Chase teaches Government and Public Speaking.
Becca Marks attended The Ohio State University and earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in English with minors in Creative Writing; Jewish Studies; and Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. She then attended Harvard’s Graduate School of Education to earn her Master of Education degree in secondary English education. She joined the Hawken community as a 9th and 10th grade Humanities teacher in fall 2015 and loves Hawken for its innovative programming, collaborative faculty, and most importantly, inquisitive and compassionate students.
Becca joined the Speech and Debate team coaching staff in February 2016 after attending the Harvard Invitational Tournament. While she accompanied the team to Boston simply to help chaperone, she quickly fell in love with the program and its hard-working students.