Student winners of speech contests at Walnut Hills, School for Creative & Performing Arts, Clark Montessori and Wyoming High Schools will compete in an annual citywide speech competition at The Rotary Club of Cincinnati luncheon meeting on Thursday, Feb 28, 2019.

These four students will incorporate the Rotary 4 Way Test, Rotary’s ethical standard, into topics they are passionate about.  The winner goes on to regional competition in April, at Wright State University. All student finalists receive cash prizes and a letter of recognition from the Rotary Club of Cincinnati.

Rotarians began visiting these four schools in fall of 2018 to work with faculty advisors and encourage students to compete. They also led coaching sessions with students.  Rotarians and faculty judged in-school competitions, and winners will give their speeches in front of hundreds of business executives at the Feb. 28 competition. Students, their guests, principals and faculty advisors from each school will be in attendance.

Media is welcome to film student speeches and interview students, faculty and Rotarians before or after the competition.

To assist media with stories or live show appearances by students after Feb 28th, The Rotary Club of Cincinnati will provide links to the student speeches for media use.  Contact Linda Muth at 513-421-1080

“The Rotarian speech contest empowers our students to speak about issues they are passionate about,” said Clark Montessori High School History & Extended Essay Teacher Craig Rush.  “We are grateful for the opportunity to get input from Rotary Members about making a difference in the world,” said Craig.

“Rotarians love helping students develop the skill that will serve them their whole life — public speaking, said Laure Quinlivan, co-chair of Rotary’s 4 Way Test Speech Contest. “It’s revealing to learn what teens really care about these days.  As we coach students, they make us laugh and they make us cry.”

Rithu Rajagopala from Walnut Hills High School won the 2018 Rotary Club of Cincinnati speech contest and went on to win the district-wide competition at Wright State University, where she was selected as best speaker out of more than 30 students from high schools across southwest Ohio.

Her winning speech can be viewed here: https://youtu.be/jrJoBtZDL-A

Rotary’s 4 Way Test challenges Rotary members to assure everything they think, say or do is the truth, is fair to all concerned, will build goodwill and better friendships and will be beneficial to all concerned.  

Student winners competing in Cincinnati Rotary’s 4 Way Test Speech Contest this year are:

Karrington Rainey, Clark Montessori High School

Rikki Joiner, Walnut Hills High School

Liam O’Shaughnessy, Wyoming High School

Student TBA, SCPA, School for Creative & Performing Arts

The celebrity judges for this year’s speech contest are Ozie Davis, new CPS School Board member and Avondale activist; Ryan Messer, new CPS School Board Member and VP at Johnson & Johnson;
D. Lynn Meyers, Producing Director of Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati and Casting Director for films; and Polly Ann Giblin, President of Cincinnati Toastmasters, Professional Organizer of Thoughts and Things.