Board of Management


Paul Hoadley (Chairman)

Paul was a successful secondary school debater in the 1980s, and went on to debate in The University of Adelaide’s competition. Paul was part of the team that assisted Sonja Lowen in setting up the Schools Debating Union, which later became Debating SA, in 1991. He adjudicated frequently in the early years of the competition, and has lately appeared as an occasional guest adjudicator for Debating SA’s grand finals and celebrity debates.

Paul has degrees in medicine, surgery, philosophy, computer science and pure mathematics, and currently runs a software development business in Adelaide.


Jenny Boroughs (Treasurer)

Jenny is responsible for overseeing the Association’s finances, ensuring that we are using our school members’ money for the benefit of schools and students.

Debating SA’s accounts are audited regularly to ensure that we are complying with best accounting practices.

Jenny joined Debating SA as an adjudicator in 2016 and is a Chartered Accountant, having worked as an auditor in accounting firms and as an accountant within the aged care industry She also has an Associate Diploma in piano performance and plays both the piano and the violin.

Jenny was involved in debating in her school years from Years 5 to 11 and is enjoying now being able to use this experience as an adjudicator and Board Member.


Sonja Lowen (Training and Resources Officer)

Sonja has been the Training and Resources Officer with Debating SA since 2006. In this role Sonja is responsible for creating and delivering training programmes for our adjudicators, students, teachers, parents and members of the wider community. She was a debater during her university days, and was the founding Executive Officer of the Schools Debating Union in 1991; the organisation which later became Debating SA.

Sonja brings with her an incredible depth of knowledge and experience of debating, teaching methodology and working with schools.


James Tran (Administrative Officer)

James has been the Administrative Officer of Debating SA since 2005.

As Administrative Officer, James is responsible for the day-to-day running of the organisation, liaising with schools, debaters and members of the wider community, as well as maintaining our website, and managing the Schools’ Competition. He is often the friendly face behind the Information Desk at debating nights as well.

Many of the innovative features you see on our website are James’ own creation as well.

In his professional life James is Manager of Digital Learning, Innovation and Analytics and Teacher at Nazareth Catholic College.


Blake Wadlow (Board Member)

Blake joined our Board in 2019, after having been an adjudicator with Debating SA for many years. Blake works as a Partner at a local Adelaide law firm and brings a breadth and depth of legal expertise to our organisation.


Lachlan Hemsley (Board Member)

Lachlan was first involved with Debating SA as a Secondary School student and has become a valued member of our team having been an adjudicator since 2006. Lachlan is a dedicated and conscientious volunteer who joins the Board in an advisory capacity ensuring that we continue deliver best practice in supporting our volunteers.


Sean Jolly (Board Member)

A debater at Secondary School, Sean has been on the Debating SA Board since 2005 and is one of our Senior Adjudicators. Sean’s role on the Board is in an advisory capacity, ensuring that our Association continues to be innovative in meeting the needs of our programme participants. In his professional life Sean is a Medical Practitioner.