Monday, June 25, 2007

Nana wins 1st Runner up at Regional !!!!

Sent in on 6/25/07 by Steve Rock of BI Toastmasters....

Here is a photo of the top two finishers in the Region 7 International Speech Contest (Nana Danso, First Runner-up and Vikas Jhingran , Champion) along with one of the 3 members of BI Toastmasters who were in attendance (Steve Rock, CTM and V-P Education, Nana Danso, CC and V-P Education-elect, Andre White, V-P Membership-elect) .
Here are some comments I shared with our club members :

The 2007 Toastmasters Region 7 International Speech Contest took place on June 23, 2007, beginning at 8:30 p.m. at the Holiday Inn on Arch Street in Philadelphia Pennsylvania. Val Albert, DTM and International Director 2006-2008 was the Contest Master. The Chief Judge was Carol Graves, DTM.
In attendance from BI Toastmasters were (of course) Nana Danso, CC, who represented District 53 in the contest, Andre White and me (accompanied by my infinitely patient and ever-supporting wife Margaret).
The order of the contest speakers was as follows:
1 Shawn Doyle
2 David Romanchick
3 Vikas Jhingran
4 Nana Danso
5 Samuel Conner
6 Michael Futty
7 Charlie Vaughan
8 Clarence E. Featherson
Vikas Jhingran brought his audience out of Philadelphia and transported us to a picture-postcard scene in his native India – the Taj Mahal. His self-deprecating humor earned him plenty of laughs as he convinced us to savor the moments of our lives as we live them. His story included a personal experience and loss that moved everyone and his closing statements were profound. Vikas, I believed at that time, was Nana's only serious competition. That opinion did not change much by the end of the contest, despite some excellent speeches delivered by the other competitors.
Nana was next, and he performed like never before. He opened up by "driving" us along at 90 mph, while being pursued by a police car, which had the audience cracking up almost immediately and wondering how the scenario would play out. From there he proceeded into the meat of his speech, in which he discussed the very serious topic of why dishonesty seems to be so commonplace these days.
His dramatic depiction of a reporter who begs for her life when threatened by Angolan rebels was juxtaposed with some very funny comments about modern day politicians and white lies so common to the rest of us. As he neared his conclusion he satisfied our curiosity about the outcome of his encounter with the police and then challenged us to join him in our own revolution wherein we would steer future generations to a more honest lifestyle and the rewards it will provide. The applause he received was hard-earned and well deserved.
Nana had obviously put many hours of preparation and practice into his speech, incorporating feedback he received not only from his fellow BI Toastmaster club members but also from other clubs and a previous world champion of public speaking. I am certain that you would have been as proud of him as Andre and I (and the District 53 dignitaries) were of him.
Finally, the contest results were announced. The second runner-up was the speaker I'd scored in fifth position, David Romanchick. What did this mean in terms of my assessment of the top two speakers in the contest, Nana and Vikas?
As it turned out, nothing – they were indeed the top two finishers in the judges' collective opinions. Nana was announced as the First Runner-up, and Vikas as the Region 7 International Speech Champion. Should Vikas for any reason not be able to compete at the World Championship of Public Speaking on August 18, Nana Danso will represent Region 7 in that contest.
Nana Danso, after only one year as a BI Toastmaster, took first place in the International Speech Contest at the Club, Area, Division and District levels and represented District 53 at the Region 7 competition, at which he defeated 6 of the 7 representatives from other Districts in our Region.
He took home not only the beautiful second place trophy for his performance in that contest but also the respect and admiration of all who were fortunate enough to be in attendance to hear him speak. We were indeed very fortunate to have Nana represent BI Toastmasters, Area A2, Division A, and all of District 53 in these formidable competitions, and congratulate him on his many awards and accolades.
As we do so, let's remember that he also deserves our respect, our admiration and our continued support of his efforts as he continues to pursue his public speaking and leadership objectives as member of BI Toastmasters and Toastmasters International.

submitted by Steve Rock

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