Climb the Mountain
Staff Bios





Jim Hanson

Executive Director of Climb the Mountain Speech and Debate Foundation, Jim Hanson is one of the most successful coaches in forensics. He has won four different Coach of the Year awards, two awards for environmental protection with paperless debating, and a Mellon grant for diversity. He has directed six different national championship teams/squads, 167 teams that advanced to CEDA or NPDA elimination rounds or qualified to the NPTE or NDT (an all time record), and he is the author of nationally acclaimed debate and individual events textbooks.


​Angie Tinker

Angie is the assistant debate coach at Pacific Lutheran University, where she has coached teams into finals consistently. She has taught at debate camps for two years, both at the Women's Debate Institute and at Climb the Mountain. During her time as a debater, she has cleared consistently at highly competitive tournaments, notably the Whitman Remy Wilcox tournament, Berkeley Invitational, and Idaho state debate championship in high school level policy debate. At the collegiate level, Angie has cleared and defeated top teams in the National Parliamentary Debate Association format at the Mile High Swing, and in British Parliamentary debate, she has regularly been in finals elimination rounds and won the Mark O. Hatfield Invitational.


Kinny Torre

Kenny is a coach at Western Washington University who debated for seven years (three years of policy in high school and four years of Parli in college). Kenny double majored in Critical Legal Studies and Philosophy at Western Washington University. For the past two years, he has consistently advanced to elimination rounds in the open division at both local and national tournaments including Lewis & Clark, University of Puget Sound, Linfield, Mile High and the National Parliamentary Tournament of Excellence. Kenny’s favorite arguments tend to be kritikal with an emphasis on Biopolitics, Neoliberalism, Post Colonialism and structures of debate. Kenny has helped with coaching for the past two years including two different high schools in Washington that placed within the top 8 at the state policy tournament.


Serena Fitzgerald

Serena did LD on both progressive and traditional circuits for 4 years in high school, and advanced to elimination rounds in bid tournaments and at state. She also did some private coaching online via video chat (for mostly LD and PF) in the last few months. Serena did various IEs all throughout high school, and won (WA) state in oratory 2015 and tried nearly every IE offered in Washington. She was team captain for 3 years of high school and responsible for training novices in all events (especially oratory, expository, impromptu, and extemp).

​Russell Skorina

Russell qualified for semifinals of nationals in congressional and repeatedly was ranked among the top congress competitors at tournament after tournament he attended.  He coached a group of novice debaters to great success, including one top 15 finish at the state tournament. He qualified for the state tournament every year he attempted. He coached a team of novices to regional success at every different style of IE event. He is an active member of the Colorado College Speech and Debate Team. He created, from scratch, introductions to speeches for every kind of speech and debate event.


Tiffany Wilhelm

In her first round of coaching, Tiffany Wilhelm coached both policy and LD at Auburn High School. Her students won first place in LD at The Glenbrooks, The Barkley Forum, and Berkeley, with numerous LD students qualifying for Nationals and TOC. Her top finishing LD debater took 13th place at Nationals. She has coached many IE students including sending a Duo Interp team to Nationals as well as many successful Oratories. Now back to the activity, she currently coaches in Congress, qualifying a student to state in 2015 and earning state bids in individual events the last two years.

Sarah Sherry

Sarah Sherry is one of Washington state’s most respected and successful coaches. She is a triple diamond NSDA coach. Sarah won the 2013 WSFA Coach of the Year Award, was a select NFHS Coach in 2006, and her teams regularly advance into elimination rounds at local and national tournaments including placing 4th at the state tournament. She has developed extensive and excellent coaching resources and is ready to help you build your program.


See more of our Staff at our Camp Bio Page.