Rotary Youth Speaking Contest

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Overview & Purpose

The Rotary Clubs of District 5170 sponsor the Richard D. King Annual Youth Speech Contest each year with three goals in mind for the Club Members and each Speech Contest Participant:
  1. To increase personal knowledge and awareness of the importance of being able to speak effectively before a group.
  2. To increase public knowledge of what Rotary is and does throughout the world, especially among young people. Through this knowledge, we hope that they will learn, as we have in the past, “He profits most who serves best.”
  3. To increase participation in the contest and to provide all high school contestants an opportunity to win prizes as top public speaker, or runner-up, in District 5170. 

The prizes (see brochure below) are awarded with “no strings attached.” However, it is hoped that the award might be used to further the student’s education. Our goal as Rotarians is to recognize and to support these young people who are tomorrow’s leaders.


Contest Dates & Locations

A competitor who wins at the Club Level, advances to the Area Level. Successful Area Level winners advance to one of two Regional Level contests. The top two (2) speakers from each Regional Level contest will go to the District finals held at the District Training Assembly.

All contests take place at noon.

Round/Level Date Location
Club Friday, February 28 Papillon Restaurant, Fremont
Area Thursday, March 5 Washington West, Fremont
Regional Thursday, March 27 Four Points Sheraton, San Jose
District Final Saturday, April 18 University of Silicon Andhra, Milpitas


How to Enter the Contest

  1. Register for the contest
  2. Download, fill out, and turn in the Student Bio Form

We can take up to four entries to the club level of the contest. In the event that there are more than four students who sign up, students will audition their speeches to select which four can compete. There is no entry fee.


Writing the Speech

Students must write a four-to-five-minute original oratory that incorporates the theme and at least one point of the 4-Way Test (see below for both of these).

Do not identify yourself or MSJHS by name. For the first contest you will be allowed to use a 3"x5" index card for notes, but your performance will of course be vastly better if you are completely memorized.


This Year's Theme

** Use of this theme in the speech should be clear and unmistakable. **

Rotary International President Mark Daniel Maloney , chose “ROTARY CONNECTS THE WORLD” as his theme for 2019-2020. President Maloney asks Rotarians to inspire change in the world and in each other: “I ask all of you to ROTARY CONNECTS THE WORLD to help Rotary move from reaction to action – to take a hard look at the environmental issues that affect health and welfare around the world and do what we can to help.”


The Rotary 4-Way Test

** All speeches must address at least one of the four points of the 4-Way Test. ** 

Of the things we think, say or do:
      1. Is it the TRUTH?
      2. Is it FAIR to all concerned?
      3. Will it build GOODWILL and better FRIENDSHIPS?
      4. Will it be BENEFICIAL to all concerned?


Official Brochure: