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Sunday, July 12, 2020

Amy Ren to compete in the Optimist International Oratorical World Championships

Following a successful virtual convention, Optimist International is moving forward to its second major online event, the Optimist International World Oratorical Championships.

The speak-off will be held July 16-17, 2020 via Zoom.

If one remembers, a mere four years ago, the original idea of the Optimist International World Championships was that all contestants would speak online from their home location. As Optimist International partnered with St. Louis University for the activity, they anticipated an at-large segment from a truly international audience. I can recall seeing participants from countries outside the typical boundaries of our clubs; however, Optimist Clubs remained dominant in recruiting and advancing speakers to the championships.

With many districts within reasonable travel distance to St. Louis, they began sending their contestants in person to the event while some in more distant districts, like those on the West Coast and the Caribbean, remained in a virtual setting. Optimist International discovered the joy of hosting the event live and I believe this year was the first year that the organization asked all districts to plan to send their contestants to St. Louis for the finals.

Enter COVID-19. Rendering all activities virtual, Optimist International had to opt for, ironically, its original design. While I'm sad at the reason, I am actually quite happy that the event will finally see its potential in action.

On July 16 and 17, youthful speakers will ask the world to "Just Imagine a World Without Boundaries."

Just go to optimist.org/oratorical on the days of the events to log-in to the Zoom presentations.

The speaking order and agenda are shown in the images. Please click to enlarge.

In the Pacific Northwest District, we are cheering on Amy Ren of British Columbia.
Best wishes, Amy! Speak well.

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