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Cari Corbet-Owen won first place in the Speech           loved the Q & A section when I’d never know

     Evaluation contest by providing Joe Anthony, target      what questions I’d be asked—it felt like an
     speaker, with excellent feedback. You can view Joe’s     exciting challene. I’d no sooner given one talk,
     speech, I Learned A lot about Myself That Day,           when invitations to speak at other clubs and
     by clicking here.                                        schools would arrive, or a newspaper reporter

                                                              would call me to do an interview or be on TV.
     Why did you originally join Toastmasters?                Every time this happened I remembered feeling

     Mrs. Torr, my teacher when I was eight, was this         how unexpected and magical it seemed.
     neat-as-a-pin, itty bitty little lady, but she was           When I heard about Toastmasters, it felt

     a giant in my life. When she chose me to read            like I’d come home and found my place in the
     a poem for a record the school was making, I             sun. Here was a place where I could not only
     could barely contain my excitement. I remember           practice something I loved, but where I could
     how her prim writing looked and how juicy that           get feedback and improve. I would come home

     dry piece of paper of invite felt when I held it in      from meetings so excited I could barely sleep
     my hand. Years later, I would take it out of my          and prepare speeches deep into the night.
     treasure box just to feel the magic it held.
         Many years later, as a Rotary Exchange               How have you used the skills learned

     Student in 1980, (a year when I did 65 speeches),        to advance your communication and
     I realized how much I loved public speaking as a         leadership skills over the years?
     way of sharing information and discovered that           I was lucky to receive unusual promotions
     people seemed to enjoy my talks. I especially            at an early age. I have absolutely no doubt it

                                                                                 was because of Toastmasters.
                                                                                 Leadership didn’t scare me,
                                                                                 I’d held many Toastmasters
                                                                                 leadership roles. Things like

                                                                                 job interviews never scared
                                                                                 me—they were just table topics
                                                                                 in disguise.
                                                                                    Doing presentations in

                                                                                 front of groups didn’t scare me,
                                                                                 they were just another semi-
                                                                                 prepared speech.
                                                                                    In 2009, I was being

                                                                                 interviewed for a 6-figure
                                                                                 income job I really wasn’t
                                                                                 qualified for when to my shock
                                                                                 I realized, I’d managed to leave

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