Sri Lankan crowned ‘World Champion of Public Speaking 2014’

Tuesday, 26 August 2014 01:58 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

Sri Lanka’s Dananjaya Hettiarachchi was crowned as the World Champion of Public Speaking 2014 at the Toastmasters International Speech Contest held in Kuala Lumpur Malaysia, making him the world’s number one public speaker. Each year, the Toastmasters International Convention culminates in the International Speech Contest, where over 120 countries and 30,000 contestants compete to win the title of ‘The World Champion of Public Speaking’. This is the first time a Sri Lankan has achieved this victory and Dananjaya represented both India and Sri Lanka at the World Championships this year. The journey to the top was a long one. Having joined Smedley Toastmasters Club 10 years ago, Dananjaya took part in the Club, Area and Division competitions held in Sri Lanka and also in the District competition held in India in order to qualify for the World Championship rounds. At the final round a panel of experienced Toastmasters judges evaluated nine contestants from different parts of the world, all of whom have advanced to the finals following a year-long process of elimination. A speaker, trainer and HRD specialist by profession, Dananjaya is also currently involved in many projects with Sri Lanka’s public sector. He has won many awards in his Toastmasters career including the World Taped Speech Contest in 2006 and the All Island Best Speaker award in 2007 and has also been adjudged Sri Lanka’s Best Competitive Speaker by Toastmasters International for four consecutive years from 2009 to 2013. His winning speech at the finale titled as ‘I see something in you’ made the world eventually see and realise that a country such as Sri Lanka (where English is only the third language) has the capability of producing a world champion speaker such as Dananjaya Hettiarachchi.