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Posts published in “Day: February 26, 2009

Crosby debaters’ winning matches

CROSBY — The local high school debate team maintained a proud tradition on February 14 by winning UIL District Tournament in Policy Debate on home turf.

The Crosby Debate Team has triumphed in District Championships 15 straight times, according to Jason Courville, the Debate Coach of the last six years.

Matthew Malek, a Senior, and Megan Sanchez, a Sophomore, have won three tournaments this year including their victory two weeks ago. Malek with Nick Jennings made it to the State Finals last year, losing out to Bay City by a single judge’s ballot.

The Bay City team then won the State Finals. Last year the B Team, Ronald Flack and Samuel Marshal took third place in State. In 2002 and 2007 Crosby teams won UIL State CX Debate Championships. Also in 2007 a Crosby team placed third in State.

Crosby sent two teams to the District Cross Examination Debate (Policy Debate) where Dayton and Barbers Hill sent three teams each. The topic this year is “The U.S. Federal Government should substantially increase alternative energy incentives with the United States.”

This year and Malek and Sanchez won October 24-25 at Bellaire High School. On October 31 through Nov. 1 they triumphed at Westside High. At Clear Creek on January 31 they again won. Malek went to Dartmouth Debate Camp in Maryland last Summer and Sanchez traveled to Michigan State for a debate camp.

What makes a successful debate coach? When Courville is challenged to defend his course he seems ever ready to win an argument, “Arguments have conclusions, claims and they have warrants – reasons to support the claims and data to support the reasons. If you have a well constructed argument, you also need to have counter arguments and comparisons between the two so. Debate has statistically, proven to increase scores on standardized tests, increase performance on essay parts of tests, and virtually eliminates a drop out rate. It engages those that are not previously focused at school. It’s hard to explain how it changes your personality, delivery and outlook and on how you assess things and how much quicker your processing time is on the back and forth of presentation. I cannot express how transformative it is to participate.”

When asked what drives a debate coach to spend long hours and extra time on weekends to make winning teams, the easy answer is that he hates to lose but the in-depth answer is much closer to an academic ideal, “I don’t reject things out of hand before I really look into them. I have become less trusting of easy ideological answers and I think as I continue to probe deeper it provides stimulus to my students.”

Crosby-Huffman Chamber of Commerce: Installation and Awards Banquet

Presenters and Awards Receipients for the Crosby/Huffman Banquet included the following:

BUSINESS OF THE YEAR was presented by Venita Smith, to ALLIANCE PROPERTIES and Velma Ellison.

CITIZEN OF THE YEAR was presented by Ginessa Schaper to BENNY BECK.

EMPLOYEE OF THE YEAR was presented by Traci Dillard, to KIM HARRIS of United Community Credit Union.

VOLUNTEER OF THE YEAR was presented by Julie Gilbert to TRACI DILLARD of Community Resource Credit Union.

NON-PROFIT OF THE YEAR was presented by Juli Hain to CROSBY CARE and Lori and Keenan Smith.

PRESIDENT’S AWARD was presented by Dr. Ryan Konarik to WENDY BAILEY.

AMADOR LEGACY AWARD was presented by Susan Armstrong to VENITA SMITH of KMCO LLP.

Chamber Awards to leaders in Community

Monument Inn was the scene of the Annual Crosby/Huffman Installation Banquet and Awards Ceremony, held last Friday night, Feb. 20.

The emcee for the evening was Chamber president Ryan Konarik, who kept the evening moving with banter and awards. The spirit of the event was cheerful and upbeat in spite of the economy, perhaps typified by three caricature artists, who cartooned the likeness of chamber members and guests, to their delight. These three artists were sponsored by Mike Godsey, Godsey Insurance Agency.

New and returning board members were sworn in by Judge Tony Polumbo, with the help of Denise Smith from Judge Parrott’s office.

Board members include Mike Amador, Susan Armstrong, Steve Coon, Don Cox, Traci Dillard, Velma Ellison, Julie Gilbert, Juli Hain, Kim Harris, Mike Joseph, Dr. Doug Killian, Dr. Ryan Konarik, Pastor Larry Koslovsky, Ginessa Schaper, Keenan Smith, Venita Smith, John Sparks, Bob Ward, and Lisa Wright.

In his message regarding the state of the Chamber, president Konarik mentioned the struggles and strengths of the organization, and how working together can help you market your business. He emphasized that participation, more than monetary contributions, is the key to using the Chamber successfully.

Konarik welcomed new staff members of the Chamber. He also thanked Don Cox, Jan Cox, Julie Gilbert and Venita Smith for their help in preparing the banquet arrangements.

Chamber awards were presented to these six special people in our Community: Citizen of the Year, Benny Beck; Employee of the Year, Kim Harris; President’s Award, Wendy Bailey; Amador Legacy Award, Venita Smith; Non-Profit of the Year, Crosby Care – Lori Smith (and Keenan Smith); Business of the Year, Alliance Properties – Velma Ellison. Not pictured, Volunteer of the Year, Traci Dillard. Each award was given by a special presenter related to the award, see story.

A silent auction was also held as part of the evening’s events, with a good deal of money raised for the benefit of the chamber. A humorous turn came when one item, a buffalo painting that was not bid on, became an instant live auction item, with great success. In turn, Steve Coon auctioned off live a team for the chamber golf tournament donated by Velma Ellison.

Dressing for retirement

Sure is nice beginning the third month of retirement and not having to dress up each day and make sure my brogans are shined up. Actually I wore Florsheim shoes most of my banking career, but ended up wearing some SAS uglies.

It’s a sight over the years how some executives dress. Have seen them with baby slobber on their shoulder to shoes that looked like they had been out milking before they came to work. Some have no clue as to what a shoe brush does with shoe tops covered in dust.

SAS shoes are ugly as sin but are as comfortable as some of the men’s exotic shoes are tacky. Got one buddy who wears nothing but khaki pants. I asked him once if he had any other colors and he said no.

One of my former bosses used to wear hundred dollar ties every day and silk, I suppose. Have seen the high dollar clothing store van pull up, and the driver walks in the bank with five suits on hangers over his shoulder taking them to the big boss’s office.

With all the free time, one has time to read the New York Times online and read with interest about an article last week about Saks Fifth Avenue. Saks is now stocking off the rack suits for $7000.00. Can you imagine? That is to go with their $1395 sunglasses, slacks for $1195 and jeans for $795. All one needs with those threads are a pair of tacky exotic gator shoes. Is that what they call, “dressed to the nines”?

Have seen people come to work without their belt or with different shoes, buttons buttoned in the wrong hole, and the list goes on. Some even come to work in their house shoes and forgot to put on their dress shoes. That’s as funny as wearing two different colored shoes. One even had their pullover shirt on inside out.

No plans to wear any of the many long sleeve white shirts in the closet. One good thing about them, they will come in handy and that is repelling heat and the ‘skeet’s when working outside and in the garden.

The Mrs. is now into resale stores, especially Blue Bird Circle resale shop in the big city. She got PO’d yesterday when she came home with the granddaughter and showed me one of two casual shirts she bought me. I said one of them looks like it has marijuana leaves all over and I ain’t wearing it. I had to Google marijuana to see how many leaves it has and she was correct… again.