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A Contestant competes in a contest. There are a variety of rules as to who may compete in a contest. For example, the winner of the World Championship of Public Speaking is restricted from thereafter competing in International Speech Contests.

A Contestant is required to have completed six manual speeches in order to compete in the International Speech Contest. A Contestant will also have to be a member in good standing in order to appear in a contest.

A Contestant may be disqualified for certain reasons described in the Speech Contest Rulebook.

A Contestant may compete in a Club Contest. The winner of a club contest may go on to an Area Contest. Normally only one member of a club will appear at an Area Contest but the runner-up in a contest may appear at a higher level if the winner is not available. In some circumstances where an Area has few clubs, the District may formally authorize more than one contestant per club, as permitted in the Speech Contest Rulebook.