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A new world record: Alum creates signature event

April 9, 2014

Ryan Avery, the 2012 world champion of public speaking and a CSU alumnus, will attempt to sell and sign 5,000 copies of his new book - in one day.

Ryan Avery has been practicing for his world-record attempt, recently signing his name 4,000 times in one day. He's shooting for 5,000 signatures.The event takes place April 16 at the CSU Bookstore as Avery attempts to set a Guinness World Record for largest book signing in history.

Avery (Journalism and Technical Communication, ’09) will be selling and signing copies of his book “Speaker, Leader, Champion: Succeed at Work through the Power of Public Speaking” starting at 8:30 a.m. Between on-site and online sales, he hopes to sign 5,000 copies in 10 hours, breaking the current record of 4,649 set by Sammy Lee last year in China.

Proceeds from sales of the book, published by McGraw-Hill Professional, will be donated to the CSU Alumni Association to support student scholarships.

Passionate Ram

“I’m incredibly excited about this event,” Avery said. “My philosophy is to do things big. When I approached my agent about attempting a world record, she said the event had to be at a big college, like Stanford. I responded by saying, ‘Let’s do it at a better college: my alma mater, Colorado State.’ I wanted to do something to give back to CSU, and they loved that idea.”

Ryan Avery, shown at a football game during his time as a CSU student, is passionate about his connection to his alma mater.Avery, a first-generation graduate of CSU, had never attempted public speaking prior to entering the 2012 World Champions of Public Speaking competition, sponsored since 1938 by Toastmasters International. Avery beat a field of 30,000 entrants from 116 countries to win the title and, at 25, became the youngest champion in history.

Practice, practice

Avery has traveled extensively since winning the World Champions of Public Speaking, making more than 50 appearances worldwide. And he has been busy practicing for his world record attempt.

“I recently made it to 4,000 signatures, so I should be ready,” he said, laughing. “I’ve taken this on like preparing for a marathon. I’ve been doing pushups, practicing smiling and standing up for long periods, and I’ve even taught myself to sign left-handed.

“It might get a little brutal at the end. Some of those folks at the end of the day might get an interesting signature on their book.”

Participate in this history-making event

  • Only orders on April 16 through will count toward the record. You can pre-register for the event by signing up at Books purchased online ($19.95 including shipping) will be signed and shipped.
  • Purchase a book from the CSU Bookstore between 8:30 a.m. and 6 p.m. April 16 for $15.95 and have it signed by Avery in person.

For more information, call the CSU Bookstore at (970) 491-0546.