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1999 World Champion of Public Speaking

Internationally-Known Speaker (have spoken in Taiwan, Jamaica, Bahamas, Canada, England, Qatar (Doha), United States, and Hong Kong

Author of the Bestseller "Nuts and Bolts of Public Speaking" book

3-Time Salesperson of the Year (Mid-Atlantic Division of Glencoe/McGraw-Hill) with 3 out of 4 years exceeding 150% of goal

Congressional Achievement Award from the United States Congress

Sold more than $8 million of educational materials in one year

Helped United Way exceed a $45 million fundraising goal by training their Loaned Executives on their presentations

Have given upwards of 160 speeches per year

MBA Johns Hopkins University

When I was 10 years old, my friend's father changed my life when he said these words to me: "Craigy, don't talk anymore, because every time you open your mouth, you remind me of Daffy Duck." He was referring to the severe lisp I had when I talked. I was crushed, and for the next 5 years, you could not get a word out of me.

Now fast forward 18 years to the date of August 21, 1999. Despite my humble beginnings, that day I stood alone as I was crowned the 1999 World Champion of Public Speaking.

That begs the following question: what happened in between? Well, in 1994, frustrated with life and filled with questions, I entered a bookstore without knowing why. Suddenly I saw a man staring and smiling at me. Normally when this happens, I run! However, this man was different. Why? Because he was smiling at me from the cover of a book. His name is Les Brown and the book is called "Live Your Dreams." Les is a Motivational Speaker.

I felt compelled to pick up the book and then I walked over to the cashier. This was the only time in my life when I actually KNEW something special was happening AS it was happening. I felt my life changing as I approached the cashier. She rang up my purchase and just as I turned to leave, she said to me knowingly, "Good luck living your dreams."

At that moment I knew the universe was on my side. I understood the decision I made to take my life by the horns would be aided by the grace, serendipitiy, and providence this world has to offer. From that moment on, I became an avid reader.

With all this new information I learned, I started succeeding in all phases of my life including work, relationships, and even finances. However, I felt a deep need to share what I learned with other people. Les planted the motivational speaking bug in me and I began studying the ART feverishly. I read everything I got my hands on concerning public speaking and recorded all of my thoughts and possible topics for several years before giving even one speech.

Then, in 1998, I read a book that mentioned Toastmasters International and gave me a list of numbers to call to find a club. In March of 1998 I walked into my first Toastmasters Meeting. By March of 1999 I reached my Competent Toastmasters Designation (CTM). By the end of August, I was the World Champion! I believe all those years of studying and preparing, mixed with the knowledge I found in Toastmasters, created a combustible combination that propelled me to the top.

Now here is the interesting part. When you become a World Champion in something, people generally want to learn that "something" from you. I had no desire to teach public speaking skills. Instead, I had other life messages to get out to people. Well, now I do both and I love both. I get to help people learn how to master the art (and business) of public speaking so that they too can touch lives. After all, everybody has a story to tell. I'm simply helping them tell it. This is great because the impact is exponential as each of my students reaches people I may never reach.

Since 1999 I have worked with thousands of speakers and managers in 8 countries and 44 of the United States. I have spoken and worked with speakers in England, Taiwan, Jamaica, Bahamas, Canada, United States, Qatar (Doha), and Hong Kong. I even lectured at MIT!

In my sales profession, I have been the 3-time Salesperson of the Year for the Mid-Atlantic Division of Glencoe/McGraw-Hill and have had 3 (out of 4) years exceeding 150% of goal. I have used presentations to personally sell more than $8 million in educational resources in a single year.

Whether you want to sell products or services, get people involved in your business, or simply desire to get your message out, this blog will teach you the processes to keep your next audience on the edge of their seats while you make a lasting impact on their lives. Let's talk about it. Here are the rules: Be informal. Be real. Be you!

You can reach me directly at 800-682-5063 or via e-mail at info at craigvalentine dot com. Surely you can put this e-mail address together in the correct way. I just want to keep the scammers from grabbing it and drowning me in e-mails.

Welcome to my blog. Whatever you decide to do, make sure you KEEP SPEAKING UP!

Craig Valentine
Columbia, Maryland 21045

"Edge of Their Seats" is a service of The Communication Factory LLC . Copyright 2004-2007 The Communication Factory LLC.


running, reading, and writing are my favorite hobbies, although playing with my kids tops them all! here are some of my specific favorites: favorite book: "the way of the peaceful warrior" by dan millman;