Dana Moore is one of those brainy types who can turn a sow's ear into a silk purse with words, regardless of the subject.
Debate is one of her skills and she's been carving up the opposition for years as half of the Policy Team -- Alexis Bylander's the other -- that has made it to the state debate tournament two years in a row.
The 18-year-old senior can argue on behalf of renewable energy as a pro-environmentalist, then turn around a few minutes later and take the opposite view.
Art focus: Debate Fine arts activities: Policy Debate, Mock Trial, Symphonic and Jazz bands
Favorite subject: English
Most memorable fine arts achievement: Placing high in Watertown Speech Festival two years running
Favorite movie: No favorite
Favorite TV program: No favorite
Favorite food: No favorite
Future plans: Political science degree from University of Chicago
Parents: Tim and Cindy Moore of Lake Shore
"You have to know how to take into account both sides," Moore, the debater, said in an interview. "In debate you have to be able to move back and forth quickly."
Selected as Fine Arts Student of Week, Moore carries a 4.02 grade point average and an advanced placement course schedule that would choke ambition in mere mortals.
This semester alone she's enrolled in AP microeconomics, AP language and composition, AP statistics and AP Spanish. And she's still had time for a successful year in Policy Debate, Mock Trial and the Symphonic and Jazz bands, where she plays the piano.
Nominated for fine arts recognition by debate coach Doug Johnson, Moore holds a Degree of Distinction from the National Forensic League, which makes the rules for high school debate.
Her debate partner, also nominated by Johnson, was featured as Fine Arts Student of the Week last week.
"Dedication is the key word to describe these talented young ladies," the coach wrote. "Not only have they represented our school throughout the state but they have done so with great class.
"Alexis and Dana are a perfect ending to my 34-year coaching career at Brainerd High School," Johnson said. "They are truly special people."
Moore is headed for the University of Chicago or the University of Wisconsin at Madison next year, expecting to earn a political science degree as a prelude to a career in politics.
"I don't see myself campaigning for office," she said, "but I can see myself working for the government" or as an advocate for a public affairs cause, such as protecting the environment, she said.
A debater for five years, Moore said the experience has taught her how to research complicated topics as well as develop her public speaking skills.
"It helps you put your thoughts together," she said.
Elizabeth Whiting, senior, orchestra: principal first violin in Sinfonia Orchestra, second violin in the all-conference honors orchestra this year.
Jen DuBay, sophomore, speech: red ribbon winner at Bemidji speech tournament in humorous interpretation.
Shelly Bingham, senior, art: "She tackles assignments with enthusiasm and enjoys the creative process as much as the final product," her drawing teacher said, "and she always explores a variety of solutions ... and demonstrates extraordinary technical skill."
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