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Eagan debate coach Chris McDonald inducted into MSHSL Hall of Fame

Eagan High School speech and debate coach Chris McDonald was one of 13 members of the Class of 2022 to be inducted into the Minnesota State High School League (MSHSL) Hall of Fame during a ceremony held April 24 at the Minneapolis Marriott Northwest.

Chris McDonald

McDonald started coaching speech and debate at Eagan in 2002. He implemented a no-cut policy that gives all students the opportunity to participate if they want, even when team sizes approach 100. “From whatever walk of life you come from, there’s a place for you here,” McDonald says to his students. He has led dozens of students and teams to success at the state and national levels during his 24 years coaching at Eagan High. He is also a member of the National Speech and Debate Association’s Hall of Fame, inducted in 2020.

The MSHSL started its Hall of Fame in 1991 to recognize the achievements and contributions of athletes, coaches, officials, administrators and contributors to their programs. Of the 245 current members of the MSHSL Hall of Fame, 16 are from District 196. Of these 16, eight coached or are still coaching speech and debate. There are four administrators and three athletic coaches, all who started programs when Apple Valley High School opened in 1976 and built them into state sports powers. And two were inducted as athletes, both women, one in basketball and the other in hockey.

MSHSL Hall-of-Famers from District 196

  • James Boesen, administrator, Apple Valley High School, Class of 1997
  • Polly Reikowski, speech coach and administrator, Eagan High School, Class of 2003
  • Pam Cady Wycoff, speech and debate coach, Apple Valley High School, Class of 2004
  • Carol Ann Shudlick, athlete (basketball, graduated in 1990), Apple Valley High School, MSHSL Class of 2004
  • Joni Anker, speech coach, Eagan High School, Class of 2006
  • Wanda Manther, speech and debate coach, Rosemount High School, Class of 2006
  • Walt Weaver, volleyball coach, Apple Valley High School, Class of 2007
  • Bill Demaray, wrestling coach and administrator, Apple Valley High School, Class of 2009
  • Geri Dirth, track coach, Apple Valley High School, Class of 2011
  • Nancy Grimes, administrator, Apple Valley High School, Class of 2011
  • Chuck Scanlon, soccer coach, Apple Valley High School, Class of 2011
  • Dennis Swanson, theater director and speech coach, Eagan High School, Class of 2013
  • Cort Sylvester, speech and debate coach, Rosemount High School, Class of 2015
  • Todd Hering, speech and debate coach, Eastview High School, Class of 2017
  • Natalie Darwitz, athlete (hockey, graduated in 2002), Eagan High School, MSHSL Class of 2019
  • Chris McDonald, speech and debate coach, Eagan High School, Class of 2022