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“I don’t get it”, she said, adjusting her sunglasses to better guard against the sweltering Tel Aviv winter, “why did nobody comment on my Hegel reference in that last article?” Under-thinking is something Rosie Halmi, Austria’s most accomplished adjudicator and Vienna EUDC’s Communication and Resource Officer/ Firefighter, has never been accused of.
As a dedicated cosmopolitan plagued with insatiable wanderlust, following Rosie’s story is intensely confusing and requires an advanced cheat-sheet with charts, graphs and formulas. It goes something like this: Born in Vienna, attending French elementary school, moving to Geneva for high school, passing GO to collect $200, studying in Israel, back to Vienna for work and studies, completing a quick law-degree in Hong Kong before going back to Tel Aviv, then Vienna, then Tel Aviv then Budapest and some other places, we lost track. While earning enough frequent flyer miles to buy a small Caribbean island, Rosie somehow also managed to get a BA in government, study philosophy, get two Master’s degrees (in law and jurisprudence) and work as head of distribution to a global broadcasting corporation.
Phew, okay. So: debating. Rosie joined DK Wien in 2009 and it has been her home ever since. Between debating, adjudicating and making friends, Rosie found life to become that thing that happens between the tournaments she regularly attends. Indeed, it is said that she’s just missing Iceland, San Marino and Lithuania to have visited every country in Europe through debate. Two adjudicator breaks at EUDC (Manchester and Zagreb) and one at WUDC Chennai later one even has to conclude that she’s quite good at it too.
But Rosie has contributed more than just her debating skills to DKWien. As someone who genuinely believes that debating can be beneficial to every individual as well as society as a whole, Rosie has been an active member of DK Wien’s board, served as its Press Officer and has taught debate in high schools in both Austria and Israel. Her dream is for debate to become a part of mainstream culture in the future – with families watching debates on primetime television and probably gasping “oh no she didn’t!” when a particularly sneaky POI is asked.
Rosie’s role in Vienna EUDC is twofold – though she would probably say that she simply portrays the philosophical notion of the duality of man and the different demeanors that one shows when responding to the societal construct of ‘self’ as defined by the Other depending on what that ‘self’ needs to be to abide by the requirements of the Other when Sartre Sartre Camus Kierkegaard Hegel Kant Hegel.
By day, our intrepid protagonist serves as Vienna EUDC’s Communication and Resource Officer. In this capacity, she directs communications. This includes writing marketing material, setting agendas, communicating with EUDC sponsors and donors, editing and copyediting material produced by other OrgCom members and lots of other things that sound important and complicated but certainly employ the full range of Microsoft Office products.
By night, however, Rosie puts on a pink mask and a flame-retardant cloak and runs around as EUDC’s unofficial Firefighter extraordinaire – swooping in when needed to help others in the OrgCom crush the challenges that arise before fading back into the darkness, lurking until the next hiccup.
That said, Rosie can be quite boring too. When asked what she would do at Vienna EUDC with unlimited funds, she responded “make reg free for everyone and pay the OrgCom for their hard work”. But that’s lame, so we’re going to pretend she answered “build a giant, rotating statue of me in the center of WU that shoots laser beams from my eyes to incinerate all PM speakers who Squirrel while ominously saying ‘FEAR ME!’ to all debaters in attendance”.
Rosie enjoys long walks on the beach and likes to relax with a nice glass of wine.
This article was contributed by Alon van Dam. Thank you very much and best wishes from Vienna!