Presidential Debate video

The featured video on this page provides a brief tour of Saint Mary’s College of California and showcases academic buildings, open spaces and areas in the surrounding community that would be utilized to host a Presidential Debate in 2012.

The video illustrates how the College would utilize the McKeon Pavilion as a debate hall. The 38,000 square foot pavilion is the home of the 2010 Sweet 16 Saint Mary’s Gaels men’s basketball team and has ample space for the requirements of the Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD).  For example, athletic coaching offices would be made available as Candidate Holding Rooms, locker rooms would be transformed into Candidate Workspaces, a conference room would be made available for members of the White House Press Pool and the office of SMC’s athletic director would be set aside as the Debate’s Moderator’s Work Space.

To accommodate the expected 3,000 media representatives who would cover the presidential debate, the College would erect a temporary 20,000 to 30,000 square foot Media Filing Center on a practice field near the Pavilion. The tented temporary structure would feature technology infrastructure, broadcast services, on-site catering and rest facilities.

Additionally, the College would utilize on-campus facilities, buildings and parking areas to provide the CPD with television production locations and workspaces, reception areas for Ticketed Guests and a football stadium for additional TV production and satellite uplink vehicles. Both the practice and stadium fields would be covered with protective surfacing for the event.

A working partnership with supportive business and government leaders in the town of Moraga have identified off-campus locations that can be used for a Ticket Distribution Center, a Satellite Media Parking area, an Accreditation Center and a Free Speech Zone. These areas include a local cinema, empty commercial parking areas, retail locations and recreational green spaces.

For more information about Saint Mary’s College of California as a location for a 2012 Presidential Debate, please contact Michael Beseda, Vice President of College Communications at 925-631-4060 or