Friday, May 26, 2006

Fall Conference & 50th Anniversary Celebration Announced !

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Share this message with all Toastmaster Clubs and their leadership team.

What: District 53 Fall 2006 Conference and
District 50th Anniversary Celebration

When: Friday/Saturday, November 3 - 4, 2006

Celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the formation of District 53 on the evening of Friday, November 3rd. The Fall Conference with educational sessions, evaluation and humorous speech
contests, and much more, will be all day Saturday, November 4th.

205 WOLF RD,
ALBANY, NY 12205

Hotel Reservations: 1 888 HOLIDAY (888 465 4329)
Hotel Front Desk: 1-518-458-7250

The Fall Conference is hosted by Division F.2006

Fall Conference Co-chairs:
Theresa Thiel Phone: (518) 434-1217 or 800-258-3582 Ext. 104
Jabbar Fagan Phone: (518) xxx-xxx Email:

2006 Fall Conference Program Chair or Co-chairs:
TBD Email:

50th Anniversary Celebration Chair:
PDG Frank Kane, DTM Phone: 860-228-3261 Email:

Thursday, May 18, 2006

OPEN CALL for ....

There are at least three ways that you can become more involved in this blog ....

1) By adding your thoughts or ideas related to the posts in the comments section, or

2) Sending us your idea to It can be a link to an article or photo or anything (Toastmasters-appropriate, of course) that you would like to share with your fellow toastmasters. Depending on what we receive, we may post all of your email or edit it slightly if needed. Please indicate whether or not you want us to include your name and email address on the post entry.

3) Send us a link to your Toastmasters-related websites or presentations or other resources that you think could benefit other Toastmasters.

There are probably more ways that you could participate and I hope to hear them !

Speak UP!

Dave Wheeler

Early Start on the next Toastmasters Year (2006-7)

Walter Beveridge has offered to give an inspirational speech at your club to kick off the upcoming Toastmasters Year and help the new club officers "Reach Their Peak" in 2006-7. "Reach Your Peak" was the theme of the District 53 Spring Conference last weekend and I've attached Walter's email below explaining his speech idea.
Anyone who has heard Walter speak at Toastmaster contests knows that he is an excellent speaker and his "Toastmasters Resume" even included some awards that I was not aware of ! I'm sure he would be a great addition to your calendar !
If you would like to schedule Walter as a speaker at your club, please email him directly (address below). It would be great if he could speak right after the new officers are elected, but I'm sure he would understand if your schedule is packed with speakers trying to finish awards before the end of June. If Walter is available, the summer months (July & August) are usually a slow time and his inspirational speech could help keep the excitement going so we head into the new year with positive momentum !
Let me know what you think !
Dave Wheeler
Area A4 Governor, 2005-6
Division A Governor, 2006-7

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Walter W. Beveridge <>
Date: May 18, 2006 12:00 PM
Subject: Early Start
To: Dave Wheeler
First, let me congratulate you on being elected Division A Governor. It is a wonderful District Office to hold and I know you will do a remarkable job.
Would you like some assistance wtih motivating the new Club Officers in Division A?
As I anticipated speaking to my Club about the Spring Conference, I decided not to make it a report. Instead, I used the Conference Theme (Reach your Peak) as the title and theme of an inspirational speech, covering all aspects of the Toastmaster program from the Ice Breaker Speech to District Conferences and District Offices.
It was well received at Putnam Speaks Toastmaster Club and I would be happy to present it to any other Clubs in our Division. The perfect time would be after Club elections (which are supposed to be held this month) and before July 1 (when the new Club Officers need to apply their inspiration). Even if I can't get to all the Clubs in our Division in June, I would speak to as many as I can of those who express interest (I would welcome the experience/stage time).
I have attached a biography that can be used to "sell" the idea of my visit to the Club Officers. Let me know if you are interested in pursuing the idea further.
The future of the world depends on our ability to effectively communicate .. and so does yours. That's why we have Toastmasters!
Walter W. Beveridge, DTM

Learning from the High PRESSURE World of Venture Capital presentations !

I came across a post by Guy Kawasaki (author of The Art of The Start among other books) and thought you might find it worthwhile ....

Some of the suggestions could obviously apply if you are doing a high pressure business presentation while others may (or may not) apply to Toastmasters Contests!

Speak UP!

Dave Wheeler
Area A4 Governor, 2005-6
Div. A Governor, 2006-7

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

55 Questions... used by WestConn Toastmasters !

Following email sent to Scott Ginsberg (the nametag guy who is also an expert on approachability). Here is his blog website: (there are links to some of his free eBooks in the right margin of the web page).

Email ****************************************************


I just thought you might get a kick out of the fact that we used your "55 questions" as the basis for our TableTopics session at our Toastmasters meeting last night.

I was the TableTopics Master and, as you know as a former Toastmaster, I had to come up with impromptu questions for the members to answer in 1-2 minutes (without prior knowledge of the questions). I introduced the session by explaining how you are "the nametag guy" and an expert on the subject of approachability.

Many of the members in our club are business professionals and they all could appreciate how the 55 questions would help them in their networking efforts.

The evening was alot of fun and I'm sure you will be getting some new visitors to your blog. (I gave out your address to a number of people.)

Let us know when you head to the East Coast !

Best Regards,

Dave Wheeler
WestConn Toastmasters, club 599
Danbury, CT
Area A4 Governor, 2005-6
Division A Governor, 2006-7

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Rob Ferrucci (from Area A4) places 3rd in District Intl. Speech Competition

Rob Ferrucci of WestConn Toastmasters, club 599, gives his speech as part of the International Speech Contest at the D53 Spring Conference. Rob was the 2nd Runner up (and brings home a trophy bigger than the Kalley award he is holding here).

Congratulations to Rob for "Making the Lesson Real!" (which also happened to be the title of his speech).

Croix Sather places 3rd in D53 Tall Tales Contest!

Tall Tales Winners at the D53 Spring Conference (left to right), Croix Sather-2nd Runner-up, Nancy Green-1st Runner-up and Gilda Bonanno-1st Place. Croix is from Area A4 (WestConn Toastmasters, club # 599).

Elmo was not in the contest, but he never misses a chance to get in a picture! (He is in the background looking over Croix's shoulder.)

District 53 Leadership Team at Spring Conference...

District 53 Leadership team is recognized by Bob Bradshaw, former Toastmasters International Director. D53 leaders include (left to right) John Lynch (Lt.Gov.Educ/Training and District-Governor-elect), Paul Young (current District Governor), Will Ryan (Lt.Gov.Marketing and Lt.Gov.Educ/Training-elect), Karin von Kaenel (Lt.Gov.Marketing-elect), Ute Brinkman (Conference Co-chair), Norm Thibodeau (Div.Governor), Ray (i forgot his name and title, sorry).

Chief Judge at D53 Spring Conference

Chief Judge, Joel Garcia, provides a brief overview of the rules prior to the Tall Tales contest at the Spring Conference held at Mountainside Resort in Wallingford, CT on May 13, 2006.

Media Center & Contest Co-chair at Spring Tall Tales Contest

Ute Brinkman, District 53 Spring Conference Co-chairman, poses in front of the "media bar".

A number of people realized that the bar offered a perfect vantage point for videotaping the contestants!

Joe Zafian practices prior to contest.

Toastmaster Joe Zafian practices his International Speech prior to the meeting.

Elmo was not part of his speech. He was just trying to get in some extra "stage time". (Big Bird is always hogging the spotlight on Sesame Street.)

Monday, May 15, 2006

District Contest Results ....

Congratulations to Croix Sather and Rob Ferrucci !

Croix represented Area A4 (and his club, WestConn Toastmasters) at the District Tall Tales contest on Saturday May 13th and brought home a trophy for 2nd Runner-up (3rd place). This was Croix's first contest season and we look forward to seeing him in future contests. Certainly with the birth of his daughter, Mackenzie, he will continue to have plenty of material for speeches !

Rob also represented Area A4 and WestConn Toastmasters and drew the last speaking slot of the evening in the International Speech Contest. The competition was tough and the general consensus (of all the people I spoke to) was that only a few points separated all the contestants. Rob's speech, "Making the Lesson Real", earned him a trophy for 2nd Runner-up (3rd place).

Both speeches were videotaped and I'm sure both speakers are already thinking about their next contest (Evaluation and Humorous Speech Contests will be held in the Fall of 2006).

Congratulations again to Rob & Croix !

Friday, May 12, 2006

Re: Charter for Cartus Magnus !


CHECK OUT THE Toastmasters International website:

Congratulations to Cartus Magnus Toastmasters !

And a BIG THANKS to all the people who helped get them started !

Dave Wheeler
Area A4 Governor, 2005-6

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Regional Conference Info

For immediate release to all Toastmasters

The International Speech contests have been completed at the Division level and will proceed to District 53 Conference on May 13th in Wallingford, CT. Next month, the International contest climbs a level higher to the Region 7 Conference on June 16-17th in East Rutherford, NJ. Region 7 information is included in this email message.

The International Speech competition culminates at the Toastmasters International Convention. The convention will be held in August 2006 in Washington, DC and at that convention, 10 speakers representing 8 Regions and 2 "overseas" contestants will vie for the title of
"World Champion of Public Speaking."

2006 Region VII Conference
Hosted By: District 46
The Date: June 16-17, 2006
Website for the Region VII Conference:
The Place: Sheraton Meadowlands Hotel & Conference Center
2 Meadowlands Plaza, East Rutherford, New Jersey
The Sheraton Meadowlands Hotel & Conference Center is conveniently located eight miles from Midtown Manhattan (NYC). Nestled in the heart of the Meadowlands area, we are also only 15 minutes from Newark Liberty Airport (EWR).
Call the Sheraton Meadowlands Room Reservations by 5:00pm, May 26, 2006 for the Special Toastmasters Room Rate of $129.00 plus tax per night single/double occupancy (subject to availability). Call directly 1-800-325-3535 (Must mention Toastmasters International to guarantee the quoted rate). For more on-line information about the Sheraton Meadowlands Hotel, visit their web site at and to book a room on-line go to the Hotel web link for the 2006 Region VII Toastmaster Intl.

Conference Registration: Discounts apply if your Registration form is complete and postmarked by May 22, 2006. The Conference Registration Form is online at

Preliminary Conference Agenda:
Meet and greet Immediate Past President of Toastmasters International, Jon Greiner, DTM

Friday: Educational Workshops, Social Hour, Fun Night and Dinner; Humorous Showcase (See the top Humorous Speakers from Region VII)

Saturday: Past District Governors (PDG) Breakfast, Educational Seminars and Workshops, Communication and Leadership Awards Luncheon, Region VII Business Meeting, Banquet & International Speech Contest (semi-finals) Area & Division Governor Training and District Treasurer & PRO Training Candidates Corner (Greet the candidates for International Director)

Educational Programs:

  • "Energize, Educate, and Entertain Your Audience" by Ed Tate, ATMB, Toastmasters International 2000 World Champion of Public Speaking
  • "Evaluate with Excellence" by Jim Heeren, DTM, PDG-45
  • "Developing Your Leadership Skills in Toastmasters" by Jim Kokocki, DTM - Past International Director 2002-2004
  • "YOU Can Make A Difference - The Power Of The Toastmasters Youth Leadership Program" by Heike Estey, DTM
  • "What Every Trainer Should Know-"A Train The Trainer" Workshop" by Sandy Schussel, CTM
  • "Goal Setting: Finding the Direct Line from Point A to point B" by Catina Payne, ATM-S/CL
  • "Leadership and You" by Fran Gedra Greene, DTM Past International Director
  • “Using Improv Techniques to Help You Become a Better Speaker” by The World Class Indifference Improv Comedy Team
Region VII Conference Chairs:
Conference Chair: International Director, Rodger D. Baker, DTM
Co-Conference Chair: Rose Martino-Gerhard, DTM, PDG46
Educational Chair: Neal Gerhard, DTM, PDG46

Look for updates on the Region VII Conference Web Site -