A team from Robins took the top spot in the 2017 High School Mock Trial State Championship last week, and will be heading to the national tournament in Harford, Connecticut, next month. Another Cedar Rapids-area team, Marion Home School, was the runner-up. And, three teacher coaches were inducted into the Mock Trial Educator Coach Hall of Fame.
Those were the events culminating the 2017 High School Mock Trial season last week. A total of 32 teams won regional contests around the state in order to compete in the state tournament, March 27-29 in Des Moines. The mock trial program is administered by the ISBA’s Center for Law & Civic Education in cooperation with the Young Lawyers Division and with financial support from the Iowa State Bar Foundation.
This was the sixth time the Robins team, which is made up of students from Xavier Catholic High School in Cedar Rapids, garnered the top state title in the 35 years of the high school program. This year’s team was coached by attorney Tim Semelroth with assistance from Debbie Neumeyer and attorneys Emily Anderson and Chad VonKampen.
Sarah Cooper, Waverly-Shell Rock High School; Heidi Redmond, North Scott High School; and Tim Magill, Pocahontas Area High School, received plaques inducting them into the mock trial hall of fame. They join four other teacher coaches, who have received hall-of-fame status for their work coaching mock trial.
The hall of fame award is sponsored by the Iowa Chapter of the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA). ABOTA President Semelroth conferred the awards during a ceremony at the conclusion of the state tournament preliminary rounds on Tuesday evening, March 28. The hall of fame award recognizes the vital role that educator coaches play in teaching Iowa’s youth about the American jury system. New Hall of Fame inductees will also be recognized at the Iowa ABOTA chapter’s annual dinner in October in Des Moines. At this dinner, each new inductee will be presented a $500 honorarium.