Internal Honours Recognizing our most extraordinary members

At each annual Closing of the House, the Queen’s Debating Union recognizes the achievements of some of our most dedicated members with the presentation of our five internal awards:

The Robert Sutherland Award

Named for the first known Canadian university graduate of African descent and former treasurer of the QDU Robert Sutherland (B.A.H., Classics and Mathematics, 1852), this award recognizes a member of the Union who has achieved significant cumulative competitive success during their time with the club. Past winners include:

  • Kaya Ellis (2012, 2013)
  • Adam Hetherington (2011)
  • Christine Wadsworth (2009, 2010)
  • Sarah Sahagian (2008)
  • Steve Dickie (2007)
  • Laura Kustisto (2006)
  • Nick Shkordoff (2005)
  • Eric Szmurlo (2004)
  • Michael Saposnik (2003)

The Debating Blue Award

Given to a graduating member of the club who has demonstrated extraordinary commitment to the QDU, the Debating Blue Award is named for the official colour of our Union. As a show of the club’s gratitude for their enduring dedication, the recipient of the award becomes an honourary lifelong member of the QDU. Past recipients include:

  • Kaya Ellis and William Gibson (2013)
  • Ryan Tolusso (2012)
  • Megan Van den Hof (2011)
  • Michael Portner-Gartke (2010)
  • Ben McNelly (2009)
  • Lisa Jorgensen and Sarah Sahagian (2008)
  • Steve Dickie (2007)
  • Frances Ue and Laura Kustisto (2006)
  • Nick Shkordoff and Aron Seal (2005)
  • James Fenske (2004)
  • Alex Dutton and Tamara Kagan (2003)
  • Michael Saposnik (2002)
  • Will Hutcheson and Nicola Matthews (2001)

The Lorna Breckon Novice Award

Lorna Breckon served two terms as the QDU’s first female treasurer in the 1940s concurrent with her acting as President of the Levanna Debating Society, then the all-female equivalent of the QDU. Named in her honour, the Lorna Breckon Novice Award recognizes a novice member of the club who has proven both their dedication and competitive potential, in addition to demonstrating strength of character. Past winners include:

  • Kate McNeil (2013)
  • Holly Kallmeyer (2012)
  • Katherine Fu (2011)
  • Kaya Ellis (2010)
  • Jenny Zhang (2009)
  • Megan Van den Hof (2008)
  • Robin McNamara (2007)
  • Joanna Adams (2006)
  • Lisa Jorgensen (2005)
  • Johsa Manzanilla (2004)
  • Laura Kustisto (2003)
  • Nick Shkordoff (2002)
  • Sharon Tikiryan (2001)