History

Tufts Mock Trial was founded in 2003, and officially recognized by the Tufts Community Union Judiciary in 2004. To find out more about how Tufts Mock Trial works, explore our FAQ. To read more about Tufts Mock Trial’s history, continue below.


2003 to 2005

Tufts Mock Trial was founded in 2003 by then-sophomores Sam Bookin (’06) and Lindsey Lautin (’06). Both had competed in high school mock trial, but were dismayed to find that there was no mock trial program at Tufts University. During that first year, Sam and Lindsey established the foundations for the organization that would become Tufts Mock Trial and visited a Regional Tournament at Princeton to learn how collegiate mock trial was conducted. The following season, Tufts Mock Trial competed in its first regional at Clark University.

2005 to 2006

TMT competed at Clark University again in 2006. That year, however, TMT was beset by bureaucratic and financial difficulties. These were surmounted by the time regionals began. Upon the completion of 2005-2006 season, Hailey Fitzgerald (’08) and Jeffrey Kiok (’09) were elected as incoming Co-Presidents, and began a plan of expanding the program to two teams.

2006 to 2007

TMT went to its first invitational tournament, the Crimson Classic, in the fall semester. In the spring, TMT sent two teams to the Jamaica, Queens Regional in New York City. During the off-season, TMT went through a significant re-organization, creating the forerunner of its present Constitution, as well as solidifying its financial position with the Tufts Community Union.

2007 to 2008

TMT attended various invitationals, and sent two teams to the New Haven Regional and one team to the Bristol Regional. The program ran a Quidnunc Course through the Tufts Experimental College, allowing members to advance their skills and receive academic credit for the significant work done throughout the year. This year, TMT achieved its first bid out of New Haven to the Hamilton, Ohio Opening Round Championship (ORC), having placed third overall at New Haven. In Ohio, the Tufts team ranked well against the high-caliber competition.

2008 to 2009

TMT elected two new Co-Presidents, Jim Wright (’09) and Rebekah Sokol (’10), while outgoing Co-President Jeffrey Kiok (’09) graduated early and became an alumni coach. The program expanded to four teams after competitive tryouts. Co-President Rebekah Sokol and coach Jeffrey Kiok co-taught an Explorations Course (an advising option for incoming Tufts first-year students) in the fall semester, while Rebekah and Jim taught the annual Mock Trial Quidnunc course in the spring semester. Additionally, in November, the program hosted the First Annual Mumbo Jumbo Invitational Tournament, which was quite successful. TMT had a very successful season, expanding within the Tufts community. TMT won two bids out of the Boston Regional to the Memphis, Tennessee Opening Round Championship (ORC). Furthermore, two additional Tufts teams competed in the Bristol, Rhode Island Regional, winning another bid there to an ORC in Greenville, South Carolina. TMT ultimately declined its third bid, and sent two teams to Memphis. At the 2009 Memphis ORC, team 1402 garnered 5 wins, receiving an honorable mention and coming up 1 win short of qualifying for the National Championship, while team 1401 won 3 ballots. 

2009 to 2010

In 2009-2010, under the direction of Co-Presidents Rebekah Sokol (’10) and Jon Lautin (’11), TMT continued to improve. The second annual Mumbo Jumbo Invitational proved to be a huge success, with more teams in attendance, better competition, and an improved judging pool. This year’s tournament laid the foundation for Mumbo Jumbo to be regarded as one of the best invitational tournaments in the Northeast. In the spring, TMT won one bid at the Providence, RI Regional, as well as four individual awards. An uneven reshuffling of regionals kept TMT from picking up at second bid. Team 1602 then went on to compete at the Boston ORC, where Tufts finished with a 7-1 record, qualifying us for the NCT for the first time in our short history.

2010 to 2011

Under the leadership of Tomas Garcia (‘12) and Jon Lautin (‘11), TMT continued to grow. Tufts won its first two invitational tournaments in the fall, finishing 8-0 at UNH’s Wildcat Invitational and our own Mumbo Jumbo Invitational. The depth of talent TMT’s members began to show, as members of all classes began picking up personal awards at every invitational Tufts attended. In the spring, Tufts qualified two teams to ORCs, finishing 6-1-1 and 6-2 at the Worcester Regional. This marked the improvement of Tufts as a program, solidifying the status of our B team as a competitive entity. For the second year in a row, we attended the NCT, having placed 4th at the White Plains ORC. After receiving supplemental funding to compete at the National Championship Tournament, Team 1602 flew to Iowa and competed against multiple former National Champions in the Conlin Division. We finished with a record of 6-2, resulting in a third-place finish and earning Nicholas LoCastro both an All-American Attorney award and an All-American Witness award. As a result of this NCT finish, only 5 years after our first appearance at a regional tournament, TMT was ranked 5th amongst all programs in the nation.

2011 to 2012

Nicholas LoCastro (’12) and Lindsey Wright (’13) became Co-Presidents in 2011 following the departure of Tomas Garcia (‘12), who was elected TCU Senate President. After selecting the biggest new-member class in its history, TMT expanded to four competing teams for the first year. TMT took first at the Mumbo Jumbo Invitational, and then first again at the Thanksgiving Classic at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. For the first time, Tufts took first place at the Yale Mock Trial Invitational, widely regarded to be the most competitive invitational in the Northeast. In the spring, the teams took two bids out of Boston, MA, for their second appearance at the White Plains ORC. There, TMT won a bid to their third consecutive National Championship Tournament, this time in Minneapolis, MN. The team flew to Minneapolis and finished 3-4-1, and Nicholas LoCastro picked up another All-American Attorney award.

2012 to 2013

In 2012, Lindsey Wright (’13) was re-elected to the presidency, alongside newly-elected Anna Lyons (’15). This semester, TMT’s fall invitational schedule expanded past the Northeast for the first time. Tufts began the season with our second consecutive first-place win at the Thanksgiving Classic at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. TMT followed up that win with impressive second place finishes at both Penn State’s Happy Valley Invitational and the Inaugural Boston College Invitational. In the spring, TMT earned an unprecedented four bids to ORCS from the Manchester, NH and Boston, MA Regionals, with each of its four teams placing among the top seven at each tournament. TMT travelled to Easton, Pennsylvania for one of the most challenging ORCs in AMTA’s history, and won two bids to Nationals with second- and third-place finishes for the A and B team, respectively. TMT had won the maximum possible number of bids for a single school at each level of competition, and for the first time, Tufts brought two teams to the NCT in Washington, D.C. Tufts finished 4-8 and 3-9 in the three-judge tournament, earning Mario Feola (’15) his first All-American Witness award.

2013 to 2014

Brian Pilchik (’14) and Nicholas Teleky (’15) were elected as Co-Presidents in 2013. The fall semester started with a strong showing at Brandeis, with Tufts teams placing third and fifth. Next, Tufts placed fifth at Columbia University’s Big Apple Invitational, third at American University’s WONK tournament, and third at our own Mumbo Jumbo tournament. The fall season ended with a second-place victory at Yale. In the spring, Tufts earned three bids to the Philadelphia, PA ORC, and at ORCS, Tufts earned one bid to the National Championship Tournament in Orlando, FL.  Tufts won one bid to the NCT in Orlando, FL. The team went 5-7 in the three-judge tournament, earning Nicholas Teleky his first All-American Attorney award and Samantha Sokol (’14) double-sided All-American Witness awards. Samantha Sokol was the highest-ranked witness at the tournament. 

2014 to 2015

Nicholas Teleky (‘15) returned to the presidency, alongside former Co-President Anna Lyons (‘15). TMT started off the season with a 3rd-place win at Penn State and a 5th-place finish at Brandeis. Following an unexpected wait-list invite one week before the tournament, Tufts built an impromptu A-team to send to Washington, DC for its first appearance at UVA’s prestigious Great American Mock Trial Invitational, where the team came in 4th out of 22 top-ranked teams with a 8-3-1 record, and brought home four individual awards, including the tournament’s highest-ranked witness and its highest-ranked attorney. TMT then competed for the first time across the country, at the University of California – Irvine’s Beach Party tournament. At Beach Party, which uses an unconventional bracket system, two unstacked teams made the quarterfinals, making Tufts one of the first schools to ever make the quarterfinals on their first appearance. Nic TMT ended the fall semester with a first-place finish at Yale. In the spring, Tufts won three bids to the State College, PA ORC, and from there moved onto the National Championship Tournament in Cincinnati, OH, with a record of 6.5 wins. In Cincinnati, the Tufts team placed 5th with a record of 7-5, the highest number of ballots won by Tufts at an official AMTA 3-ballot tournament, and the best performance by a Tufts team since 2011. Senior Benjamin Kurland brought home his first All-American Witness award. 

2015 to 2016

Katie Grosch (’16) and Sara Weiss (’16) were elected to the presidency. TMT began the season by winning UMass Amherst’s Commonwealth Classic with an undefeated 8-0 record, and followed up the win with a 2nd place finish at the Brandeis invitational.  As a result of TMT’s 5-place finish at the National Championship Tournament last year, Tufts A started the spring season with its first appearance at the prestigious Downtown Invitational, which boasted 16 elite teams competing in two brackets. With a record of 5-4, Tufts placed 5th. The spring season started with a bid out of the Central Islip, NY Regional for Tufts A, and a bid out of New Haven, Connecticut for Tufts C. TMT sent two reshuffled teams to the Opening Round Championship in Wilmington, DE, and both teams fought hard throughout the weekend against the top teams in the Northeast region. The Tufts teams ultimately did not qualify for a bid to the 2016 Bell Tower Championship in Greenville, North Carolina. 

2016 to 2017

Shashank Jejurikar (’17) and Caroline McBrien (’18) were elected to the presidency. Tufts began the season by sending a Captain’s Team to Columbia’s University’s prestigious CUBAIT regional, where TMT competed with the top teams in the nation. Following CUBAIT, Tufts sent two teams to Penn State, and for the first time in its history, fielded teams in tournaments hosted by Cornell University and Berkeley University. Through the invitationals season, TMT earned numerous individual and team awards, including first-place finishes at the Brandeis Invitational and the Yale University Invitational. For the spring season, TMT re-shuffled into an A, B, and two C teams. After traveling to D.C. to compete in the Georgetown University Invitational, Tufts A earned a second-place bid at the Boston College Regional, with a 7-1 record. Tufts B followed up soon after with a 6-2 regionals record, earning two bids to the program. TMT’s season ended in the Open Round Championship Series in Central Islip, NY, after 8 rounds from Tufts A and Tufts B.

2017 to 2018

 Ben Reytblat (’18) and Ellie Powers (’18) were elected to the presidency. Tufts began the fall season by sending two to Columbia’s University’s Big Apple Invitational Tournament. After competing against the nation’s top teams, TMT won the tournament and both teams placed within the top 10 (1st and 9th). The following weekend, Tufts sent teams to Penn State’s Happy Valley Invitational and Duke’s Tobacco Road Invitational, placing 5th and 6th, respectively. Tufts then placed 5th at the Brandeis Invitational and 7th at the UPenn Quaker Classic Invitational. TMT’s fall season culminated with a 4th place finish at the Yale Invitational, marking the end of one of the most successful seasons in Tufts Mock Trial history. In addition to team awards, TMTers won outstanding attorney and witness awards at almost every single fall tournament. This led to TMT being named a “2018 Team to Watch” by a popular commentator on a mock trial ranking website: Perjuries.com. During the spring semester, Tufts competed at NYU’s Downtown Invitational in the SDNY Federal Courthouse and the Georgetown Invitational in downtown Washington D.C., facing off against top ranked teams in the year’s most challenging invitational tournaments. This helped prepare the program to win three bids out of the Princeton and New Haven Regionals, the most bids out of regionals since 2015. At the Central Islip ORCS, Tufts A won a bid to the National Championship Tournament. Tufts B was just a half ballot away from a second bid. TMT also won the Spirit of AMTA Award, presented to the nicest and most sportsmanlike team at the tournament. At the National Championship in Minneapolis, TMT placed 6th out of 48 teams. Freshman Will Porter won an All-American Witness Award for his portrayal of a Joker character witness.
 

 

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