Inside the Story: Champion public speaker taking his skills to the world stage

Inside the Story: Champion public speaker taking his skills to the world stage (Photo: KUTV)

(KUTV) — A husband and father of three is taking his skill of public speaking to the world stage.

"I'm hoping to become the world champion of public speaking," said Jesse Parent.

Parent, 44, is one of 100 competitors heading to a world competition in Chicago.

"Honestly, I feel very confident. If there's nerves it's really about I'm excited to go out there and try my best and to also just see a lot of the best speakers in the world," Parent said.

Parent has been mastering the art of public speaking for years.

He's always loved improv, comedy, and getting up in front of an audience, and "that emotional connection, being able to tell your story and figure out if anybody cares."

Parent gets his ideas from life experiences, including a very difficult time in his life when his wife was diagnosed with cancer.

"Julia called me crying from the hospital," Parent recalled. "She'd gone to get a lump checked and it was cancer."

Suddenly this master of words was speechless.

"I searched for anything to say. What do you do when words fail you? When the only thing you are good at is not enough?" Parent said while reciting a speech during a Toastmasters meeting.

But somehow, it was the silence that changed everything for the better.

"And in that year in quietly being by my wife's side, that was enough for her," said Parent.

It was enough for Parent, too.

He hopes a message of silence might be the key to a world championship in public speaking.

Parent practices at least a couple hours a day to get to his level of speaking.

He says the key to a great public speech is to speak naturally and move with a purpose.

For more about Jesse Parent, you can visit his Facebook page or website.

Parent's wife survived the cancer and is now in remission.