Your Vote Is Important

The District 86 Council Annual Business Meeting April 13, 2019 starting at 2pm

Hilton Meadowvale Mississauga
6750 Mississauga Road, Mississauga ON. L5N 2L3
Map and Directions | Hilton Meadowvale Mississauga

Click here to register for the conference>> Spring Conference: Saturday, April 13, 2019
There is no cost to attend the Annual Business Meeting only, however you are requested to pre-register by April 8th, to receive your voting ballots at the conference, register here>>> Annual Business Meeting April13, 2019

Pick up your ballots at the credentials desk before 1:00 pm, Saturday April 13. The credientials desk will be open Friday 2 pm - 6:45 pm, Saturday 7:00 am - 8:00 am, 9:00 am -10:00 am and 12 noon - 1:00 pm.

Why Vote?

  • Participate in decisions affecting the members of District 86, including your club.
  • Enable the District to carry on its business and vote for next years elected Directors.

Who Can Vote?

  • District Executive Committee members.
  • Your club has 2 votes: Club president and club vice president education of a club in good standing. (dues paid by March 30). These votes can be assigned by PROXY to any active member who registers to attend the Annual Business Meeting in person and vote.
  • One paid member may carry both votes for the club.
  • A paid member of a club who has been assigned a proxy. Once assigned the proxy holder cannot transfer the proxy to another member.
  • District Executive Committee members have one vote. This vote cannot be assigned via proxy.

Pre-Registration is Requested by April 8, 2019

  • Indicate your attendance at the meeting and pre-register for your ballot by April 8th.
  • Click here to register>>> Annual Business Meeting April13, 2019
  • Why? We need to achieve quorum and prepare your ballots in advance.

Important Documents to Read 

Voting Proxies

  • To assign a proxy, download this proxy form 
  • President and the VP education who cannot attend the meeting complete their forms and assign their proxies to an active member, who will check in at the Credentials Desk at least an hour before the Annual Business Meeting,

Pick Up Your Voting Ballot

  • If you are the president or vice president education, pick up your ballots at the credentials desk
  • If you are a representative from your club, please present the prepared proxy (printed) form, to receive your ballots.
  • Credentials desk closes promptly at 1:00pm Saturday April 13th.
  • Annual Business Meeting begins at 2:00pm Saturday April 13th.

For further information please see Toastmasters International information on credentials / voting / proxy

Cathy Herschell, DTM, IPDD
District 86 Credentials Chair

Your Club Meeting Is Your Product

In January Kristina, Jacklyn and I went to mid-year training. One of the workshops we attended was on branding. 

I really liked the analogy they used to make the point about how important branding is in today’s world.

Think about this. You are in a foreign country and it is lunch time. You are looking for a place to eat but you can’t read the signs on the building. What happens if you spot, in the distance, the “M” of McDonald?  What goes through your mind? Do you keep looking for a restaurant or do you head for the McDonald? How did you know it was a McDonald?

That’s the power of a brand. Anywhere you go in the world, you recognize the McDonald logo and you know you will have food that will be like home. Consistent quality.

What is your “M”? Your banner, your guest kit, your agenda? 

Your Banner: 
A few years ago, Toastmasters International change the colours of the banner to Blue and Burgundy. Your banner should reflect the new colours. If you still have the yellow one, I encourage you to buy the new one. By displaying the yellow banner, you are confusing your guests. That does not mean you need to get rid of the yellow one. No, it is part of the club’s history. But you should not display the yellow banner as the main banner. If you have ribbons, transfer them to the new banner. Those accomplishments deserve to be displayed. It’s part of your success and who you are as a club. Your banner is the first sign that your guests are at the right place. Like the “M” display it proudly for all to see.

Your Guest Kit:
What is in your guest kit? Is your material all from Toastmasters International? If not, is it on Toastmasters International stationary? Are you using the proper font? You can be creative in what you want your guests to take home with them. Just make sure you are using the right stationary. 

Your Agenda:
Does your agenda have the Toastmaster logo? What font are you using? Do you have the club mission on it? Does it list the officers of your club, when you meet, where you meet? Does it have your club name, number and the date of the meeting? If the agenda is the only piece of paper your guests take with them, you want to make sure it has all the information your guests nee to find you again.

You can find all kinds of branded material on Toastmasters International website under “Resources”. 

Your club meeting is your product. Imagine if McDonald had a different experience every time you walk in one of the restaurants. The quality of your meeting, starting with the way you brand your meeting, is what will bring your guests back. You can be creative, change your meeting format, have fun all within the brand’s guideline. 

Become as recognizable as the “M”.

Jocelyne Vezina, DTM

D86 Club Growth Director

Personal Branding @ Toastmasters

When I began my career in a multinational company decades ago, I was asked to attend a mandatory workshop for all employees focusing on the value of the company’s brand and the measures to safeguard it. Those conversations left a strong impression on me as a young manager. After all these years, the core message remains: it takes years if not decades to build a successful brand but it would only take one misuse to destroy it totally. I just googled and found out that my former employer’s brand* is now worth US$34.2 billion. No wonder!

Interestingly, as individuals, we ARE our own brand. Though we may not be able to attach a price tag to it, our personal and professional success depends much on our personal brand. Building and safeguarding it are by default essential life skills for us to master. What follows is a brief summary of personal brand* which I hope helps clarify the concept and prompt us to take necessary actions to insure its equity.

According to the experts, our personal brand is made up of at least 4 elements:

  • Competence: it refers to our knowledge, skills, and behaviors. It is the most obvious and basic quality of an individual and often referred to as the “ticket in the door”. Personally, I don’t believe we need to be an expert to be competent, especially in Toastmasters. However, it is important that we persist in and demonstrate our learning over time. After all, Toastmasters is about growing our competence in communication and leadership through active participation in the educational programs.
  • Image: it refers to how we present ourselves to others. It is primarily about our physical appearance, grooming and our demeanors in different situations, especially under stressful conditions. Our image is often being tested when we are “caught off guard”. Knowing our own hot bottons for stressors is important, as well as developing our capability to manage our emotions under stress. Serena William’s out-burst at the 2018 USA Tennis Open is an example of how a positive image could be tarnished in a matter of seconds.
  • Reputation: it refers to the opinions of others on us. At a glance, our reputation seems to be something beyond our immediate control. However, if we see reputation as a cause, rather than an effect, we would be much more proactive in managing our interactions with others. Being more empathic would be a good step in the right direction as we endeavor to see things from others’ perspectives. For those who are active in social media, perhaps be more discreet in our public posts and comments could be a case in point.
  • Visibility: it refers to the opportunities through which we could be seen. It may have to do with getting involved in larger scale projects and special assignments. Networking, volunteering, and speak-up are a few other ways to become more visible. In Toastmasters, it could mean visiting other clubs, performing different roles in meetings, taking up formal or informal roles at Club, Area, Division or District level, and of course submitting blogs to your District website once in awhile!

*General Electric Company

Philip Lai,

President(2018-2019 Term),

Port Credit Toastmasters Club

What is Your Intent When Conducting a Speechcraft Program?


You probably had it. Maybe there are some fellow Toastmasters that still experience the symptoms of this condition. It’s not contagious…just a nuisance. However, you took steps to address this condition and now look at you! 

Do you know what this condition is? It is called Glossophobia – the fear of public speaking.
To me, the word “public” alone is fearful – speaking in front of a crowd, a large gathering. One definition for the word ‘public’ is “done in open view”. When I hear the word “public”, I envision more than 50 faces before me.

As Toastmasters, we practice speaking to a small audience. We gain confidence in our ability to speak in front of an audience, whether it’s at work as part of a team; a community group; a church committee or at an association meeting.

The number of attendees at these gatherings range from maybe 5 to 10 to 20. A small audience. Speechcraft sessions and club meetings consist of a small audience.

What does this have to do with Speechcraft?

It’s all in the intent to ATTRACT non-Toastmasters to this program.

Generally speaking, Toastmasters International is an unknown entity. By telling the public to join Toastmasters to improve their public speaking skills probably won’t get them even interested in exploring what Toastmasters is all about, let alone sign up for a Speechcraft program or join a Toastmasters club.

Solution? – In your promotional fliers and announcements on social media, why not ask the public some questions about their “fear of public speaking”. Then position the benefits of Speechcraft as the answer to those questions. Your INTENT is to offer a solution to their fear by offering a workshop! For example –

  • Does the fear of speaking in front of a group evoke fear, make you sweat and get your heart pounding?
  • Do you find it difficult to find the words to express your ideas in a clear and concise manner?
  • Do you find it challenging to give effective feedback to fellow co-workers, friends and family?
  • Would you like to learn some techniques on how to make your presentations interesting, informative and interactive?

Here’s the solution: “Consider participating in a 6-8 week Speechcraft Program, where you will present short, effective speeches to a small group while improving your presentation skills with the help from an experienced Toastmaster advisor. All sessions are conducted in a friendly environment, no judgment is made and encouragement is abundant.”

The fear of speaking in front of an audience is all about the non-Toastmaster, not about joining a club to increase your membership strength – that’s a bonus. With the guidance from experienced Toastmasters, you can help them improve their speaking skills.

Sure, as a program host, you want these participants to join your Toastmasters Club...boost membership roster, add more variety to regular meetings, etc. Wait until the last session to make a pitch to join your club. Frequent mentioning of joining Toastmasters could disenchant the participant with the whole concept of Toastmasters and the benefits gained from Speechcraft.

If the program is conducted like an abridged Toastmaster meeting, the participant will feel more comfortable when they attend a regular club meeting…that’s a bonus!

Remember at the last Speechcraft session to INVITE all the participants to your club meeting and assure them they will receive a warm welcome and will be made to feel at home.

I believe as Toastmasters, we want to share our learning experiences; we want to encourage others to gain the benefits that you have gained; and, we want others to experience personal growth and development as they proceed through Pathways.

By marketing Speechcraft as a program to address “What’s in It for Me” (WIIFM) concerns, there is the potential to increase membership numbers, subtly. Continue to be mindful of who is attracted to Speechcraft and focus the benefits of Speechcraft as a solution to their “fears”.

Speechcraft plants the seeds to help grow the Toastmasters exposure to the community. With nurturing, mindfulness and persistence on the INTENT, your Toastmasters club will grow and who knows, maybe it will be responsible for the launching of a new club! That’s a bonus!

Margaret Waechter, ACG, ALB
Speechcraft Chair
District 86


District 86, Division A Toastmasters Expo



Do you have a fear of public speaking or impromptu speaking? Jennifer Hutter, a Toastmasters member, quoted “Interviews were a nightmare for me. My face would get red and my mouth would get dry. Suddenly, I forget how to speak. I join toastmasters 4 months ago because I’m sick of my nervousness getting way of my success.”

If this statement resonates with you, we are extending this invitation to you to attend District 86, Division A Toastmasters Expo. at Markham Civic Centre in Canada the Room on Thursday, January 24, 2019 from 6:30 PM for registration and commences promptly at 7 PM to 10 PM.

We are thrilled to announce that District 86, Division A Toastmasters Expo will commence its very first Toastmasters Club meeting. Jennifer Jones McConnell, District 86 Speakers Bureau Coordinator, Markham Talk of The City Club President, Advance Communication Bronze and Advance Leadership Bronze, will conduct a workshop on the benefits of Toastmasters and a fun-filled Table Topics session.

About Toastmasters International

Toastmasters International is a worldwide non-profit educational organization that empowers individuals to become more effective communicators and leaders. Headquartered in Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif., the organization's membership exceeds 352,000 in more than 16,400 clubs in 141 countries. Since 1924, Toastmasters International has helped people from diverse backgrounds become more confident speakers, communicators and leaders. For information about local Toastmasters clubs, please visit Follow @Toastmasterson Twitter.

For more information:

  • Date: Thursday, January 24, 2019
  • Time: 7:00 PM – 10:00 PM EST
  • Location: Markham Civic Centre | Canada Room | 101 Town Centre Boulevard | Markham | ON | L3R 9W3
  • Admission: Free

register here on eventbrite

Youth Leadership Program Cyril Clark Library Oct 20 to Dec 8th, 2018

CC YLP 14 18

My name is Cal Lockhart and have on several occasions assisted and acted as a judge for Gavel Club (junior Toastmasters) speech contests. On these occasions, those kids are nothing short of amazing! Granted, in the contest arena we are treated to the ‘creme de la crème’ of the genre.
I was told of a previous Youth Leadership Program (YLP) that the Brampton Library had sponsored, where only 12 of the starters actually completed the program. Taking on this YLP I was astounded that of the 26 participants 24 completed the program! I arbitrarily added one whose father told me that his son was on the waiting list and was very anxious to be part of the program.
Our 9 week program was reduced to 8 weeks. I had planned the 9th session to include the representatives from the Brampton Library, Brampton City Council and other dignitaries from the Toastmasters Organization and district 86. The participants however, in one of the Parliamentary Procedures exercises, made a motion which was seconded, that we cancel the 9th session and that a simple Certificate Presentation Ceremony be held instead on the 8th week. The motion was discussed by the group, the question was called and passed by a huge majority. Hence, I "bowed to the will of the people" and cancelled my 9th session plan.
I must add that not since my experience as Assistant Scoutmaster, between the late 1950's and early 1970's, had I ever dealt with teenage boys, and I have never encountered teenage girls at all. To do so, in a quasi-academic situation was enlightening, to say the least! While I tried to treat the group as young adults, I was never certain that the approach was either proper or appropriate. Nevertheless, it was the 'road taken' and my approach never changed.
I was, therefore, absolutely astonished by the program evaluations from 21 of 24 participants of the program. It would appear that they not only heard an 80 year old man talk, they ACTUALLY LISTENED, and apparently learned! That is a measure of success!
With respect to our desire for 100% attendance, I'm very much of the view that such is an 'impossible dream'. Some of the reasons for this included pressing appointments with University of Toronto with possible ambitions to enroll as students for a coming term. Also withe the fast approaching holiday season, with its associated needs for shopping, parties and social events tends to rate much higher on 'Mazlow's Hierarchy of Needs' than the requirement to listen to an old man talk!
In summary, in retrospect I think the program was far more successful than I had imagined to have ever thought possible. I am grateful by the encouraging comments provided by the participants, and I am appreciative of the opportunity afforded me by the Brampton Library and my home club 'Speak To Inspire Toastmasters'.

With my very best regards,
Cal Lockhart ALB, ACG

To view the PDF of evaluations click HERE.

Youth Leadership Program Four Corners Library Oct 20 to Dec 15, 2018

YLP2018 TrinhLu

Photo credit: Lyndsy Johnson

My name is Trinh Lu and have had the pleasure of helping out as Assistant Coordinator twice before for past Youth Leadership Programs but this is my first time running one, and it's definitely not my last.
I am glad I had a chance to plant a 'Toastmaster' seed in these kids' lives. I hope there are more Toastmasters running future programs because I truly believe in its benefits.
I can see first hand how our programs change shy, timid kids to becoming confident speakers. Their eyes light up after completing a speech, or an evaluation, or table topics well done. The joy in their parents' eyes watching their kids' progress at the lectern is all worth it.
These kids now have the tools to succeed, to become the leaders of tomorrow. They now have gavel clubs to join, resources to go to when they need them. They can even become our club members in the future.
The last session we had 20 youth, 4 Toastmasters and 16 parents in attendance. I know I did the right thing when kids asked me to take pictures with them, and send me emails for christmas. Even the parents sent me thank-you notes and updates on their progress.

I also want to thank the fellow Hershaw members whose help was much appreciated: 

David Burt (assistant coordinator), Sue Hopcroft, Alice Siefert, Ron Kosciolek, Sandeep Kainth, Colleen Dotson, Binu Cherian, and Veronica Headley.

by Trinh Lu


Check out the attched feedback from the Library and youth 

Charting New Territory

Are you thinking of chartering a new club? After having been working on the sidelines of the Team that just chartered Clarkson Toastmasters Club, I can say that it is a lot of work. When you look for information in Toastmasters International or within the District 86, there isn’t a lot of published information with best practices or guidelines. This is probably because each club and situation is so unique. There were a lot of things that I learned in this process and I wanted to share what I learned.

Location, Location, Location
Our first launch meeting was May 22 when we were meeting at Christ Church in Mississauga. This Church is located within the Lorne Park community and it is literally nestled within a residential neighbourhood. While we were scouting for locations, this venue had a lot of great features like the grounds which would have been perfect for summer meetings, lots of free parking, storage for our Toastmasters paraphernalia which would mean that we could leave our things there from week to week. After our first few meetings we were having trouble getting people to the meeting because other than our social media forums we had no way to reach out to our audience. In September 2018, we moved our meeting to the Clarkson Community Centre. By the end of October, we reached charter strength. This speaks volumes to the importance of location!

Give Everyone a Role
It can take months to charter and while you work and wait patiently to get to charter strength you can’t afford to disengage the members who have signed up as a member. It is really important to keep them engaged. Since a key success factor for the club is getting members, create a Membership Committee and involve your newest members. You can also keep your members engaged by assigning them roles at the meeting. We encouraged members to present their Ice Breaker and then to deliver the speech again by incorporating their feedback.

There are many social media forums to promote the launch of a new club, but don’t make the mistake of creating a presence in so many forums that you lose track. Stick to the best ones which may include Facebook, Eventbrite, Snapd, LinkedIn. We also did the following to gain exposure:
1. Reach out to the local newspapers and wrote a short article
2. Contact our Ward Councilor and they welcomed an article for their newsletter
3. Contact ratepayer associations (your Ward Councilor would be able to help you find their contact information)
4. Put up posters in the local coffee shops

Chartering a new club is really exciting once you start to see the results. It can be a long process, so don’t forget to celebrate along the way and celebrate each new member you add. The big celebration comes with the official charter party, which we will hold in March (stay tuned for another blog!). Beyond this however, by successfully chartering a club you have left your community a better place than you found it and that is something to be very proud of!

Muktha Tumkur, DTM

Toastmasters International Values:  Respect • Integrity • Service • Excellence
Our Principles:  Lead By Example • Work / Play as a Team 

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