Mastering the Art of Public Speaking: What I Learned from Sir Lynden Pindling

By Spence Finlayson

NASSAU, Bahamas – The Right Excellent Sir Lynden Pindling KCMG, is widely regarded as the “Father of the Nation” of the Bahamas, having led it to majority rule on January 10th, 1967 and to independence on July 10th 1973.

I was 10 years old when then Lynden O. Pindling, led the Progressive Liberal Party to a stunning victory at the polls in 1967.

He was very charismatic and of course, a very good public speaker who knew how to reach persons at all levels of society.

I can vividly remember my late father Alpheus Finlayson Sr, speaking about Sir Lynden in glowing terms saying on one occasion that’ God gave him a great voice as a gift. He was compelling on the podium, at international conferences and of course at political rallies.

Sir Lynden Pindling
What I learned from former PM of the Commonwealth of the Bahamas, Sir Lynden Pindling about public speaking:
  1. Know Your Audience – Sir Lynden always knew who his audience was. He had the ability to speak to the lower class, the middle class and the upper class reaching each one of them where they were at the heart. He walked with kings but never lost the common touch.
  2. Speak with passion – he was a very passionate speaker that could whip up a very large crowd of thousands. When he came on stage, you had to listen to what he was saying. He totally captured everybody’s attention. I can recall one of his party’s convention on Paradise Island at the Holiday Inn Hotel in the late seventies. He had a large following of rabid, enthusiastic supporters. One of them kept saying “Go Moses, Go Moses, Go Moses all night long as Sir Lynden spoke. He certainly knew how to whip an audience into a frenzy.
  3. Know your subject matter – Sir Lynden’s speech delivery was so powerful, you had to feel that he knew what he was talking about. I learned from him that I should be fully conversant with my topic that there should never be a scintilla of doubt from my audience about my intimate knowledge of my subject .He was very comfortable giving statistics while he spoke.
  4. Command the platform – He was in total command of the platform when he spoke, although short in stature, he appeared towering of his audience. He was the picture of confidence. He owned the stage.. He had presence. You knew when he entered a room. He had showmanship. He was sure of himself.

I admired Sir Lynden greatly as a leader and a gifted public speaker.

One of his more popular quotes is “If Bahamians are not prepared to stand up and defend their own Bahamas, then you don’t deserve to have it.”

I was chosen to be the motivational speaker for Sir Lynden Pindling‘s Progressive Liberal Party Convention in 1992 and when I started speaking to the delegates, Sir Lynden was one of the first persons to stand up and cheer me on. He was followed immediately by the Hon. AD Hanna and Sir Clement Maynard.

A few days after my monumental speech at the convention, Sir Lynden called me and said, ”Boy that was a great speech eh?”

I will cherished his comments and faith that he had in me as a young motivational speaker. He was simply one of the best orators in the Caribbean.


Spence Finlayson

Spence M  Finlayson, is an international conference speaker and the Founder & CEO of Master Motivator Spence Finlayson Speakers Academy. He is  a much sought after motivational speaker and has spoken in over 26 Foreign countries with 30 years experience. He can be reached at 242-677-0418 or by email at

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