The Joys of the Contest Season by Gerry Fryer
While remaining somewhat above the fray as the clubs and areas in my division held their contests this fall, I noticed several things which reinforced my belief in the Toastmasters program.
On the communications side,
- Members aged from 20 to 80 showed up as contestants.
- There was one Table Topics contestant who was completely thrown by the topic. Nevertheless, her speech let us in on her struggles with it and her thought processes, and she won the hearts of a highly empathetic audience.
- Toastmasters from some clubs that were chartered in 2014 won at the area level and did well at the Division Contest.
- Unexpected things happened. Some inexperienced Toastmasters gave wonderful speeches and won prizes, while there were veteran members who just had bad days and were left to fight another day.
- The final winners of the Humorous and Table Topics contests had to be and were brilliant in order to emerge as representatives of Division A at the District 86 Fall Conference.
As for leadership, contests provide an opportunity for members to go beyond their comfort zones and do something they have not attempted before. With the material on the District’s website and assistance from other members, there is more support for these members than ever before.
The members who step up at contest time become the club officers, area governors and other district officers of tomorrow, because they prove something to themselves. Some examples:
- Toastmasters who are somehow transformed into calm and authoritative personalities when they are at the contest podium.
- Others who exercise their natural talents in finding resources, bringing people together and making decisions within a given timeframe.
- Those who gain confidence just by the discovery of their capabilities.
Contests are fun and sometimes mildly stressful. The payoffs, it seems to me, are the growth both in Toastmasters spirit and the capabilities of our members.
Farewell to a Great Speakeasy Toastmasters Member Malcolm Jones
Dear Toastmasters, dignitaries and former Toastmasters,
On Thursday, former Brampton Speakeasy Toastmasters President Malcolm Jones will be sharing his last Toastmasters meeting with our club. We invite all of you to attend the Thursday October 30th meeting to honour Malcolm Jones.
Malcolm will be moving to Tillsonburg shortly, a small town outside of London ON. A jolly, heart-warming Toastmaster, Malcolm is one of the founding members of Brampton Speakeasy. His personality is highly reflected in our club culture, which has, arguably, driven the success of this club.
Malcolm joined Toastmasters in 2009. He was the original VP of PR for Brampton Speakeasy, and was elected SAA soon after. As President, led the club to President's Distinguished before December of his term. His speeches were thought-provoking and endearing. His comments are witty, and he is absolutely hilarious. Malcolm successfully launched the Brampton Gavel Club, which has grown remarkably through his leadership. Many youth are completing the leadership programs and actively participating in the Gavel Club because of his mentoring and his fantastic management. Truly, if anything else, Malcolm is a polished manager. He is always on-time, on-point and dedicated to his role.
Last but not least, he always provided a helping hand. Malcolm frequently visited clubs and contests around District 86, either to fill a role or simply, say hi. Most recently, he was spotted in Milton supporting our contestants at the Division B contest. Malcolm is a mentor, he is a leader, and he embodies the values of a Toastmaster and a good friend. For anyone that has ever met Malcolm Jones, you know that his presence is memorable. He starts with a big hello, gives a sweeping hug or a solid handshake, and he makes you feel engaged, involved and welcomed into the family.
So, please come out and join us as we celebrate Malcolm Jones and his legacy with Toastmasters.
Time: 7:00 pm sharp
Location: Brampton Speakeasy Toastmasters, the Upper Floor Community Room at Fortinos Brampton, 35 Worthington Ave, off of Bovaird and west of Chinguacousy
Contact: Radha Tailor 647 407 9877 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mark McKenzie Rhb, DTM Shares his 90th Anniversary Experience
At the start of 2014 I had 2 simple related goals. One was to complete the requirements for DTM and the other was to break into the professional speakers' space/market. In May 2014 I was awarded my DTM by Toastmasters International. Today I spoke with about 300 grade 6 students at Sunny View Middle School in Brampton. This for me is both monumental and memorable as my accomplishments coincide with Toastmasters 90th Anniversary. So today like hundreds of thousands around the globe in more than 116 countries I say, "Here's to the vision of Ralph Smedley and the mission of Toastmasters."