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In 1966, a woman named Wilma Cruz had just arrived home in the Philippines from Detroit, Michigan where she took her Masters in Speech and Drama at Wayne State University for an entire year. It was the turning point in her life and career.

Her studies overseas and exposure to Western culture had drastically changed her personality overnight – no longer was she the painfully-shy Wilma who hid in her bedroom whenever her family had parties at their house. She had become a new woman – strong, vital, and determined to make a difference.


Several months later, after conducting several speech classes in her father’s garage, she opened SPEECH TRAINING CENTER in España, Manila. It was the country’s first speech clinic that was run by a woman. Her fresh and dynamic teaching style, which was infused with all the latest techniques on the art of communicating, was so well-received that her phenomenal rise to national prominence was nothing short of explosive.


Not long after her she became renowned for her accomplishments in the field, she moved the school into her very own three-storey building not far from where she first established herself in Sampaloc, Manila and it eventually housed the country’s largest and most modern speech clinic. By then, her programs which attracted thousands of Filipinos every month, ranged anywhere from Public Speaking to Stress Management and Typing to Jewellery Appraising.


In 1980, an organization called The National Commission on the Role of Filipino Women (headed by then First Lady Imelda Romualdez Marcos) invited Wilma to star in her own television show to further the cause of teaching Filipinos to speak better. Shortly, the show titled “COMMUNICATING WITH WILMA” went on the air. Its impact and influence at the time was tremendous and it only helped boost her authority and expertise in the field.


It was at this time that she and her husband Victor Tapalla (whom she met in one of her classes) were also very busy raising their two children Valerie and Vernon.

Valerie was sent to Europe and the United States to take up courses on Modeling, Personality Development, and Hotel and Restaurant Management. Vernon, on the other hand, went to America near San Francisco, California to pursue his studies in Business Management at the COLLEGE OF NOTRE DAME (now called Notre Dame De Namur University), a small, private Catholic school. He then spent some time on the East Coast and took up Creative Writing at New York University.

Upon coming home to Manila, he indeed started his career as a writer. He worked for publications like Lifestyle Asia, Philippine Business (the official monthly-magazine of the Makati Business Club), and Eve (as regular columnist). Not long after and with his mother’s blessing, he put up his own speech clinic and consulting firm in Makati City in March of 1998.

Because of his hard work and utmost dedication to the craft, his company called COMMUNICATIONS SPECIALISTS became a success too, just like his mother’s school when she first started.

Today, after more than 57 years since Wilma Cruz-Tapalla opened the doors to what would become the nation’s largest and most successful speech clinic and after 18 years since he opened his own school, Vernon has trained thousands of people from all walks of life as well as companies (both private and government) such as Hewlett-Packard, NEC, SIEMENS, HSBC, RCBC, Central Bank, Development Bank of the Philippines, Department of Trade and Industry, and UNILAB.


Nowadays, he is looking forward to helping more people to maximize their fullest potentials and succeed in every aspect of their lives.

He grew up seeing and hearing his mother. Her immense passion and commitment to perfection have influenced him more than he will ever know. These he will carry with him for as long as he is teaching and for as long as he is breathing.


He invites everyone to experience the JOY and PALPABLE ENERGY that each moment of being with him in his classroom brings. All of his students attest to this fact. Call now! 

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