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Ethos Community,

If you are reading this, first of all, thank you!

I will go ahead and address the elephant in the room: Isaiah McPeak the debate deity, has left the building.

I get it – you’re probably a tad confused, and cautious about the change Ethos is undergoing – mostly because Isaiah is LEAVING. To be honest, I feel the same way, but I also get to let you in on a cool little secret: Ethos isn’t changing!

Before we jump ahead though, I need to introduce myself. My name is Thaddeus Tague and I have been a dedicated part-time coach with Ethos Debate for the past 4 years or more. Next week, I’ll update you a little bit more about myself and who I am.

I am positive that you guys all have some very legitimate questions that need answering like:

  • What is happening with Ethos?
  • Is anything major changing?
  • Is Isaiah gone for good?

So here’s the deal. I didn’t want to write this and make it a reader’s digest style company switch, with dry questions and answers. Rather, while I have your attention I wanted to make the most of it. If you have questions that are just burning inside you, email us at contact@ethosdebate.com You will receive a partly scripted, partly personal response that we have written which should answer all your questions. We’d also love to hear your thoughts about where YOU think Ethos should go in the future. Because, even though we have some way cool stuff lined up, it’s always a good idea to incorporate feedback. Also – if you did high school debate, and maybe want to help out now that you are out of the circuit, shoot us an email with your resume! I can’t promise we will have a position for you, but who knows!

Tuesday, Emily will post an in-depth bio and description of what she plans to bring to Ethos. Friday, I will do the same. Right now, we are busy finishing off the details of legally transferring Ethos, and the ensuing financial minutia.

I write all of this in order to update, you, a member of the Ethos community, on what is going on. So no – this post doesn’t have a massive, glaring “point” other than to help you get your bearings and orientation on the change that is happening. I am super confident in the team of coaches, assistant coaches, bloggers, and consultants that Ethos has at its fingertips.

What’s Next?

We’re looking to expand our markets in the upcoming 2-4 years. We will expand camp offerings, expand Ethos XL, start publishing a sourcebook again (which, I will remind you, used to be the best sourcebook available for years in a row).

First – ask yourself – what does Ethos do and what does Ethos stand for. The answer has been the same ever since Isaiah started the company.

Ethos coaches don’t tell their debaters what to think, but rather how to think. The Ethos style of coaching has always been to teach the student how to be a winsome and persuasive communicator in real life, and then also, how to win rounds. Empathetic, endearing communication is an art form. Teaching debate for the sole purpose of winning rounds does only one thing ( maybe): win rounds.

Teaching debate from a holistic standpoint allows our debaters to grasp the larger concepts of what makes an idea persuasive, and why presentation matters so much. Winning the judge isn’t the end goal. Winning the judge is a byproduct of coming to a true understanding of what real, authentic, persuasive communication is. That is what Ethos stands for.

Ok – so blah blah blah, company vision, change, yadda yadda. I get it if you skipped ahead. What does this mean to you? All this means is that things are going to be getting better and better for you.Pretty much nothing. Ethos is ready and willing to continue its debate services, in a better capacity than it could before. We want to help you achieve communication nirvana AND we want to help you win. We’ll go into this more in-depth on Friday.Stay tuned for more updates!

Once, when I was in high school (2013), I told Isaiah, that if he ever came to California, he could stay at my family’s house in Escondido. He took me up on the offer, mostly because my house was like a 3-minute drive away from a NITC camp that Training Minds had invited Isaiah to speak at. After a few very pleasant days of hosting him, and after he had endeared himself to my family, Isaiah took his leave back to Virginia. My mom had cleaned up my own room, and used it as a guest room for Isaiah, and stuck me on an air mattress with my younger brother for a few days. I walked back into my room, and on the dresser were two books – left intentionally – for me.  Isaiah didn’t make a big hoopla about how or why he did it – he just acted on instinct – and knew that I would benefit from what he had to offer.Anyone in the multiplicity of high school debate leagues (seven I think) that has met Isaiah, or even had one conversation with him knows what I am talking about. He just gets debate like no other coach out there.

That instinct – the ability to diagnose and assess the input a debater needs – he instilled in all the ethos coaches. It’s something we are striving to teach our assistant coaches as they get more experience coaching and teaching. I am excited to be at this position, and even more excited for the growth Ethos will be doing in the future.

Stay tuned,

Thaddeus Tague

Head Coach and Owner

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