The Minnesota Debate Teachers Association created the Tamar Kaplan Student of the Year Award to celebrate the life and personal qualities of Tamar Kaplan. Tamar was a former Minnesota State High School League state debate champion, Tournament of Champions qualifier, National Urban Debate League Tournament finalist, and 6th place speaker at the National Forensic League Tournament.
Outside of debate, Tamar was a scholar. She excelled in school, graduating high school in the top ten of her class. She understood that her studies were equally important to debate. But her classroom was not just in the walls of a school. She saw the world and understood the importance of living in the world. She spent a semester abroad studying in Australia during her sophomore year of high school and in South America during college. She did her best in her short time here to experience life and the world around her.
Tamar knew what it meant to serve. While she was in high school, she took over the novice coaching her junior and senior years. Also, she coached the Highland Park Middle School debate team. She worked for two summers at the Minnesota Debate and Advocacy Workshop at Augsburg College. Summers, she worked for several different non-profit organizations that helped those less fortunate than many of us. She continued working for non-profits in college.