This competition was founded in 1995 as the “Harvard National Congress” (HNC) by Brent Pesola at the behest of Ashley Keller, one of his students at University School of Nova Southeastern University in Florida. At the time, the only national/multi-state Congress tournaments were offered by the NSDA and NCFL. Later, other large tournaments began to offer Congress, and in 2002, Brent Pesola and inaugural HNC champion Jason Wysong (then, coach at Cypress Creek HS, FL) co-founded the Congress Tournament of Champions, which ran for three years in Fort Lauderdale, before being absorbed within the Tournament of Champions (TOC) at the University of Kentucky. In 2013, a record number of participants resulted in something never done before at a Congress tournament: quarterfinals. In 2021 and 2022, the tournament was held online during the COVID-19 pandemic.