F. Brooks Quimby

Professor 1927-1967Class of 1918, Speech Professor, Debate Leader

F. Brooks Quimby, Class of 1918, Speech Professor 1927-1967, Debate Leader.

Frank Brooks Quimby was born in 1897 in Turner, Maine. A 1918 Bates graduate, Quimby had been involved in debate since high school. Traditionally, Bates underclassmen did not compete in intercollegiate debates, but the talented Quimby was the first chosen to compete all four years. After graduation, Quimby volunteered for service in World War I, became a chicken farmer upon his return from the war and then turned to teaching. As a teacher and the coach of the debate team at Deering High School in Portland, Quimby led the team to several state championships.

In 1927, he returned to Bates as a professor and eventually chair in the speech department. Quimby made Bates a world debate power, organizing more competitions than ever before and promoting international debate travel. He coached the first three U.S. national teams as part of the Committee for International Debate.

Quimby published several essays and two books for high school debaters and coaches. Teaching his students to argue with sincerity, Quimby once said, “We have plenty of lawyers in this country who will defend any position for a fee; we need more men and women who speak effectively in support of their convictions.”