Ralph C. Smedley

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Ralph C. Smedley (February 22, 1878 – September 11, 1965) was the founder of Toastmasters International, an international speaking organization with more than 352,000 members in 141 countries and more than 16,400 individual clubs.

Smedley was born in Waverly, Illinois, a city twenty miles southwest of Springfield. He remained in Illinois most of his youth. After high school, he taught at schools in the countryside[citation needed] before enrolling at Illinois Wesleyan University at Bloomington, Illinois. After his graduation in 1903, he started working at the local YMCA. [1]

Illinois Wesleyan University recognized Smedley's service to mankind by conferring him the honorary degree of Doctor of Humane Letters (L.H.D.) in 1950. Santa Ana named a junior high school after him in 1955.


  • The man behind the rules: An account of the life and work of Henry Martyn Robert, author of Robert's Rules of order (1937)
  • The Amateur Chairman (1939, ?, ?, 1947)
  • Speech Evaluation: The Art of Constructive Criticism (1940)
  • The Voice of the Speaker (1949, ?, 1967)
  • Speech Engineering: 25 Ways to Build a Speech (1952)
  • The Amateur Chairman (Toastmasters International) (1952)
  • The Great Peacemaker (1955)
  • Basic Training for Toastmasters (1956)
  • The Story of Toastmasters: Reminiscences of the Founder (1959)
  • Beyond Basic Training (1961)
  • The Advanced Speaker (1963)
  • Personally Speaking: Selections from the Writings of Ralph C. Smedley (1966)


  1. ^ A Quiet Man With Lots to Say About Speech Retrieved on 23 Jan 2018

External links[edit]