Since this is a competition, you can't have photography during the speeches (too distracting) so Becky took my picture next to the lectern after my speech. I chose the last speech slot, so I got a chance to listen to all five speakers before I gave my speech. I made a lot of people cry. The funniest thing is that I didn't do a lot of schmoozing with people I didn't know. But as soon as I did my speech, LOTS of people wanted to stop and ask me questions.
The interviewer had a strange sense of humor and thought it would be funny to use an Anti-Semitic joke during my interview. I tried to just let it pass, but it upset a lot of the audience, which made me feel better. They came up and apologized to me for her.
I have definitely learned alot from this process. I can say that I've done my best. There isn't anything I would have changed about my speech. Not one thing.
There was a gentleman with a cleft palate in the audience. He didn't speak to me until after my speech, and then we talked a lot. So if my speech was only for him, it was worth it. Trophies gather dust and mean little in the grand scheme of things, but if he was touched... I won first place.
Thank you to all that helped me get to this conference and who cheered me on, attended my contests and practice speeches. This has been a great weekend.
Now off to dream land! Amarillo by mornin'...