[imagesource: Facebook / Verity Price]
Reigning rugby world champions.
Reigning British & Irish Lions champions.
Three Olympic medals and five Paralympic medals.
And now, we can also boast about having the reigning Toastmasters World Champion, with Verity Price claiming the title this past Saturday.
The 46-year-old Capetonian, who joined Toastmasters nine years ago, becomes the first African to ever win, and the first woman in 80 years, so it’s no small feat.
In order to qualify for the finals, Price tells The Daily Maverick that she had to win a number of contests:
Toastmasters is a non-profit organisation that teaches people public speaking through regional clubs. The organisation has 30,000 members, with 15,800 clubs in 149 countries. It has been around since 1924.
Previously, Price had won the Toastmasters public speaking competition in the Western Cape. Then in May, with a speech about how her mother had taught her to make the world a better place, she won the southern Africa leg.
Her journey to the world championships was long and “gruelling”. At the semifinals, a panel of experienced Toastmasters selected the eight finalists to compete in the Toastmasters World Championship of Public Speaking.
Remarkably, Price’s sister, Kaye Price-Lindsay, came second in the 2017 Toastmasters World Championship.
Getting in a word at the dinner table growing up must have been pretty tough.
Price, a keynote speaker, facilitator, and singer, says her sister helped her prepare for the final, honing her speech, titled ‘A Great Read’.
That speech, which Price says she rewrote 32 times, would win her the competition, and it’s pretty inspiring to listen to:
Price spoke about how she felt that her life was a failure as a 40-year-old woman with no children, no husband and living in her sister’s spare room.
At the core of Price’s winning speech is the story of how she was miserable, but her perspective changed when she read a letter by her late father, which implored her to write a new story if she wasn’t satisfied with her current one.
Take it away, world champ:
Along with the help of her sister, Price also leaned on her coach, Lance Miller, who says her authenticity helped her win over the judges.
Congrats to another Saffa doing us proud.
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