Summer 2019 Newsletter

A Message from the Chair

Welcome to our new Board Chair – Carrie Klypchak!

A note from Carrie:

I’d like to start by taking a moment to, again, formally say “thank you” to Mark Pickell for his outstanding leadership of our organization for the past two years. There are truly no words to adequately describe the magnitude of his contributions. I am humbled to have assumed the role of Chair of TTAO, and am so very grateful that he will be continuing offering his vast knowledge, energy, and creativity to our organization and community as Past Chair during my tenure.


Summer Board Meeting Round Up

The board had a busy but productive meeting in June. Many different topics and items were covered and decided on. To find a summary of everything discussed please see the meeting minutes on the TTAO website here:

We increased the amount of evaluations FOR adjudicators this year – yay!!! BUT we didn’t receive very many evaluations FROM adjudicators evaluating the contest. Let’s make that a goal this upcoming season. (we’ll send reminders during contest time)

And remember that your social media posts are open for all to see. Continue to be mindful of what you share across your social media channels during the school year and during contest season.

Area/Region/State Assignments

Congratulations to those that were selected! All assignments can be found on the UIL website.

Connect System Updates

1. The time limit for an agreement to be auto-rejected is 72 Hours. Adjudicators should accept any agreements within that time frame so the CM knows whether or not to move on to contracting someone else. Adjudicators please check your email regularly (and your spam folders!)

2. Adjudicators now have the ability to clear rejected contracts which will allow a CM to resend it if they so wish. From your home dashboard select the 3 line icon next to the pending agreements header and click “show rejected”.

3. There are new fields for CMs to input District Executive Committee Chair/ Payment contact information (required) and Secondary Payment Contact Information (Bookkeeper, Admin Assistant, Principal) (optional).

4. Contracts no longer can be created with a base fee “per play”. There will now just be a single base fee agreed to and paid out.

Many of these changes are based on your feedback of what was/wasn’t working. Thank you for supporting the system and bearing with us as we continue to improve it!


YouTube Tutorials:

*Remember we have a lot of tutorial videos created for different aspects of the Connect system including Connect renewal, creating a contest, inviting adjudicators, accepting contracts and more. View our channel here:


*Please do not “save the date” on your availability calendar. When the CM goes to send you a contract, they will not be able to find you in the system.

*Please remember that you can only agree to 6 contests per season. Keep this in mind, as some upper level agreements/judging offers for contests that you may have been assigned by UIL are still being sent out. As well, remember that if you judge 2 Zone contests (or on rare occasions 3)  deriving from the same District, that will only count as 1 contest toward your 6 (as Zones contests are essentially “sub-contests” of a District). Middle School & State contests do not count against your 6.

* The following rule must be followed: “Eligible judges MAY NOT be involved in the direction of an official UIL One-Act play entry during the 2019-2020 academic year at ANY level (high school or middle school).” If, for any reason, your status has changed regarding this rule since you became a certified adjudicator and you are therefore not eligible to judge this season, you may maintain your membership in TTAO, but you must mark all dates as unavailable in TTAO Connect for this year. Please do this immediately if you have not already done so. (We are currently exploring ways in the future to more readily designate “active” from “inactive” judges from year to year in TTAO Connect.)

Contest Managers:

*The option to “add an adjudicator” will not appear until you input a location for the contest. This is the setup of the Connect system.

*Please remember that all panelists must be paid the same judging fee at a specific contest.

*Also, please be sure to put in the correct alignment when creating contracts. (We’ve altered this section of the contracts a bit which should help moving forward!)

Region1-4 (I-IV)


*Please join us for TTAO events at the Texas Educational Theatre Association Convention: TheatreFest 2019 on Sept. 26-29 at the Dallas Hyatt Reunion!


1. TTAO Executive Board Meeting (Board only)

Thursday 11-3:30

2. TTAO Presents: The Jargon of Adjudication (Yvonne Dupree, Travis Springfield, Rick Garcia, and Jill Ludington)

Thursday 5pm

3. TTAO/UIL OAP Contest Managers Training 101 (Robin Robinson and Craig Hertel)

Friday 8am

4. TTAO/UIL Theatrical Number Sense: How OAP Tabulation Works (Robin Robinson and Craig Hertel)
Friday 9:30am

5. TTAO/UIL Contest Managers Training II: New Rules and Procedures ( Robin Robinson and Craig Hertel)
Friday 11am

6. TTAO Presents: How to Get More Contests (Ray Newburg, Mandy Epley, Kim Hines, Ezekiel Morgan, and Kathy Harvey)
Friday 12:30pm

7. TTAO New Adjudicators and Contest Managers Meet & Greet (For NEW Adjudicators and newly certified TTAO Contest Managers, TTAO Leadership, and State Judges/Contest Managers) *This is happening OFF SITE – digital invitations will be sent with more info in the coming weeks*
Friday 3:30pm – 5:30pm

8. TTAO: Meet the State Adjudicators and Contest Managers (Mark Pickell)
Saturday 9:30am

9. TTAO: Open Forum (Carrie Klypchak)
Saturday 11am

10. TTAO Business Meeting (Carrie Klypchak) 
Saturday 12:30pm 
*All members are encouraged to attend! In addition, anyone who is being nominated for a position on the Board or Standards & Practices Committee MUST attend the Business meeting.*

10. TTAO Presents: Diversity (Omar Laos, Yvonne Dupree, and Freddie Buckner)
Sunday 9:30am


Join TTAO on Facebook

Did you know that TTAO is on Facebook? Join us in one of our groups for the latest updates and tips related to OAP!

If you are an adjudicator, join us here:

If you are a contest manager, join us here:

Upcoming Important Dates

Sep 26 – 29 – TETA in Dallas
Nov 2nd – First day to complete your District & Zone panel

Issues or Questions?  

Contact for the fastest way to get problems alleviated.