White Station High School of Memphis Wins 3rd Straight State Mock Trial Competition

16 teams from across the state competed in Nashville for the honor

NASHVILLE, March 24, 2011 — White Station High School of Memphis recently claimed its third straight state mock trial championship, defeating McCallie School of Chattanooga in the 31st annual Tennessee State High School Mock Trial Competition. The team now will represent Tennessee at the National High School Mock Trial Competition in Phoenix May 5-8.

The two-day state competition involved 16 teams and 200 volunteers, including lawyers, law students and paralegals. In addition, sitting judges in the state presided over the trial rounds at the Metro Davidson County Courthouse in downtown Nashville, and Tennessee Supreme Court Chief Justice Connie Clark presided over the championship match.

This year, the teams put their skills to the test arguing the case of United States of America v. Kiffin van der Lame -- a federal criminal case involving wire fraud and extortion. The defendant, Kiffin van der Lame, a citizen of Atlantica, was accused of extorting funds from the Anderson family in exchange for information about the Anderson's daughter, who had visited Atlantica on spring break and went missing. Teams had to prove whether van der Lame did or did not commit the alleged crimes, and if he did, what role possible mental health problems played in his decision-making.

TEAM RANKINGS
To reach the state competition, each team had to win its respective district competition, where were held throughout February. The top 10 teams are listed below. In addition, a "Most Valuable Player" was named for each team. Those students are listed below as well.

1st Place: White Station High School Green Team, Memphis

MVP Sandhya Sridhar

2nd Place: McCallie School, Chattanooga

MVP Austen Smith

3rd Place: White Station High School Gray Team, Memphis

MVP Stephanie Kim

4th Place: Kingsport Area Christian Home Education Association

MVP Jonathan De Troye

5th Place: Chattanooga Southeast Tennessee Home Education Association

MVP Stephanie Fast

6th Place: Jefferson County High School, Dandridge

MVP Tadd Minton

7th Place: Martin Luther King Jr. Magnet School, Nashville

MVP Kannan Raju

8th Place: Montgomery Bell Academy, Nashville

MVP Will Stewart

9th Place: St. Mary's Episcopal School, Memphis

MVP Sarah Jemison

10th Place: Dyersburg High School, Dyersburg

MVP Sean Stapleton

AWARDS
Individual awards for best advocate and best witness were given as well. Recipients are below. In addition, Sam Snider with the White Station High School Gray Team of Memphis was recognized with an honorable mention for best overall competition witness.


Best Advocate for the Prosecution
1st Place: Blaine Coyle, Knoxville West High School
2nd Place: Allison Montague, Clarksville High School
3rd Place: Joe Saulsbury, Kingsport Area Christian Home Education Association

Best Advocate for the Defense
1st Place: Elizabeth Saulsbury, Kingsport Area Christian Home Education Association
2nd Place: Brandon Holt, Martin Luther King Jr. Magnet School, Nashville
3rd Place: Alexis Adams, St. Mary's Episcopal School, Memphis

Best Witness for the Prosecution
1st Place: Alex Button, Signal Mountain High School, Chattanooga
2nd Place: Margaret Frank, Beech High School, Hendersonville
3rd Place: Sarah McEvoy, Ravenwood High School, Brentwood

Best Witness for the Defense
1st Place: Katherine Cloar, Dyersburg High School
2nd Place: Aaron Broder, Martin Luther King Jr. Magnet School, Nashville
3rd Place: Priyanka Moolchandani, St. Mary's Episcopal School, Memphis

Sportsmanship Award

The competition's team Sportsmanship Award went to Beech High School of Hendersonville. That award recognizes the school that best embodies the values of the mock trial experience and demonstrates that commitment through the competition weekend.

VOLUNTEERS
The competition would not be possible without the hard work of the Tennessee Bar Association Young Lawyers Division's Mock Trial Committee, the hundreds of lawyers who volunteer their time, and the support of the Tennessee judiciary. Members of the Mock Trial Committee are:

  • Chair Marisa Lee Combs, Lewis, King, Krieg & Waldrop PC, Nashville
  • Vice Chair Troy Weston, Eldridge & Blakney PC, Knoxville
  • Kristen Corn, City of Franklin
  • Josh Dougan, Rainey, Kizer, Raviere & Bell PLC, Jackson
  • Candi Henry, Dodson, Parker, Behm & Capparella PC, Nashville
  • Matt Kroplin, Frost Brown Todd LLC, Nashville
  • Rachel Ralston, Hunter, Smith & Davis LLP, Kingsport
  • Thomas Santel Jr., Cope, Hudson, Reed & McCreary PLLC, Murfreesboro

In addition, the following judges volunteered for the competition:

  • Judge Bill Anderson Jr., Shelby County General Sessions Court
  • Magistrate Judge Joe B. Brown, U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Tennessee
  • Judge Byron D. Bryant, Municipal Court of Knoxville
  • Chief Justice Connie Clark, Tennessee Supreme Court
  • Judge Paul B. Conley III, Crockett County General Sessions Court
  • Judge Richard H. Dinkins, Tennessee Court of Appeals
  • Judge John T. Fowlkes Jr., 30th Judicial District Criminal Court
  • Judge Phyllis Gardner, Shelby County General Sessions Court
  • Judge Michael R. Jones, 19th Judicial District Circuit Court
  • Judge Carol L. McCoy, 20th Judicial District Chancery Court
  • Judge Camille R. McMullen, Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals
  • Judge Betty Thomas Moore, Shelby County General Sessions Court
  • Judge Robert W. Newell, Gibson County Juvenile Court
  • Judge Robert W. Wedemeyer, Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals
  • Judge Thomas T. Woodall, Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals

ABOUT THE 2011 COMPETITION

A complete list of team rankings, award recipients, participating judges, attorney coaches and photos of the competition are available on the 2011 State Competition webpage

ABOUT MOCK TRIAL
Each year, the Tennessee Bar Association Young Lawyers Division (YLD) develops a fictional case in which students play the roles of attorneys and witnesses. The YLD also supports local tournaments across the state, recruits judges and lawyers to volunteer at competitions, and coordinates the state contest -- which brings district winners to Nashville for an intense two-day competition. The Tennessee High School Mock Trial Competition has been in existence for 31 years. It provides high school students an opportunity to learn about the law, court procedures and legal system and improve their public speaking and reasoning skills. For more information about the program visit www.tba.org/mocktrial.

 


The Tennessee Bar Association (TBA) is the largest professional association in Tennessee with more than 13,000 members. Founded in 1881, the TBA provides opportunities for continuing legal education, professional development and public service. The TBA’s dedication to serving the state’s legal community is evidenced by its membership roll, which represents the entire spectrum of legal practice: plaintiff and defense lawyers, corporate counsel, judges, prosecutors, public defenders, government lawyers and legal services attorneys.

For More Information

Stacey Shrader Joslin
Tennessee Bar Association
(615)277-3218
221 Fourth Ave. N., Suite 400
Nashville, TN 37219