Darren Tay, a 27-year-old lawyer from Singapore, who became the World champion of public speaking 2016, selected Sri Lanka as his first overseas destination after winning this prestigious title. This was when TM Sudath Fernando from Omega Line Toastmasters met him in Singapore and invited him, soon after he returned from the US winning the finals.
He won this title competing with over 30,000 Toastmasters commencing from his home Club in Singapore and then with Toastmasters from all over the world at different stages and finally with the 10 finalists in the US.
Omega Line Toastmasters organised a gala event at Galadari recently where the stage was set glamorously for his presentation. The audience was stunned when they saw the arrangements for the world champion speakers event in the Grand Ballroom at Galadari.
Toastmaster Tay told the audience of over 500 Toastmasters and non-Toastmasters, how he was able to win the world championship of public speaking. At the outset, Tay explained what obstacles he had from his childhood when it came to public speaking and presentations and how he overcame those. He clearly explained what he did and why he did those, to get rid of the obstacles on his path and finally how he achieved his goals and became the world champion. He gave many useful tips and advices to the audience with his own experiences, which was very educative and useful for all aspirants of this title and for those who are craving to be good communicators and leaders in Toastmasters.
He elaborated on the dos and do nots of public speaking and explained how to use the stage impressively. Tay touched on body language, voice variation, vocal variety, eye contact and all other skills required to be an outstanding speaker during his presentation. He also did his semifinals speech there, which was a treat for the audience. Finally there was a question and answer session where many pertinent questions were asked and Tay answered all questions on the dot, which showed his skills. At the end, Tay autographed his book where all copies were sold out. He had to spend a quite a lot of time after the event where many queued up to have a photograph with him.
Tay was interviewed by a few TV and radio stations where he went on ‘live’. Omega Line Toastmasters arranged a sightseeing tour for him where he visited Kurunegala and Nuwara Eliya. In Kurunegala, he met the members of the Wayamba Toastmasters.
Tay was a guest at the Pinnacle Advance Toastmasters Club and he was at the Omega Line Toastmasters Club meeting, which was a treat to all members. Tay participated in all club activities, explained his winning speech while it was shown on a wide screen. He also evaluated two prepared speeches of club members, which is a once in a life time experience for any Toastmaster. At the conclusion of the meeting he was hosted to dinner by the Omega Line Toastmasters where he enjoyed many Sri Lankan dishes.
He praised the hospitality of Sri Lankans and said that Sri Lanka was a beautiful country and that he saw smiling faces everywhere he went. The friendly, humble, down to earth World Champion of public speaking, Tay left the island after a very successful tour of Sri Lanka sponsored by the Omega Line Toastmasters Club.
Omega Line Toastmasters consists of members from Omega Line Ltd Sandalankawa, Sirio Ltd in Badalgama, Alpha Apparels Ltd in Polgahawela, Benji Ltd in Bingiriya and Vavuniya Apparels in Vavuniya, which are associated to Calzedonia S.p.A, Italy. Omega Line Toastmasters Club was charted on August 2, 2009, a brainchild of Omega Line Group Director Toastmaster Felix A. Fernando, who is also the Charter President of the club.
Since its charter, the club has had many achievements to its credit. It became a Presidents distinguished club for five consecutive years and has produced many champion speakers at division and district level. The club also has three area directors one division director to its credit. This year is unique as Area Director H 2 TM Sudath Fernando and Division Director Division H DTM Chethiya Subasinghe both being members of Omega Line Toastmasters Club. The club has always raised the bar and improved every year. The current Club President TM Charman Dep has taken many initiatives to introduce new concepts to the club, which has made the club vibrant and energetic on the upward path. The current Executive Committee along with TM Manjula Alagiyawanna, TM Chamikara Perera, TM Sudath Fernando and DTM Chethiya Subasinghe were the steering committee who organised Tay’s programme in Sri Lanka.