Friday, June 29, 2007

What does an Area Governor do exactly?

I was swapping emails with one of the incoming Area Governors in Div.A and I thought I would share the following for the benefit of the other Area Governors (as well as anyone who might be curious about the role)....

First... there is Training!
As Area Governor, there is a special training session that is put on by the District to cover "everything you ever wanted to know about being an Area Governor". The first of these sessions was done on June 2nd but they are going to do another (probably shorter) version after the Executive Committee meeting on July 21 up near Albany, NY. I will be driving up there if anyone wants to carpool.

Now, the "Reader's Digest" version of what an Area Governor does is ...
- Help clubs in the area achieve Distinguished Club Program (DCP) award. If the Area Governor comes from a club that does consistently well in this category, they should have a headstart in this area. Part of this is helping make sure the clubs receive officer training and if they are not able to make one of the TLI events, working with them to find other "make-up" training opportunities (either at the Division or Area level).

- Run Fall & Spring Area Contests. The past couple years we have combined some of the Area contests into one "event" so that the workload could be shared between two area governors. For example, Area A2 and A4 were combined and Area A1,A3&A5 were combined for the Spring contests. There will also be training by the District to give Area Governors some tips on how to run a successful area contest. (It is really pretty simple once you have done it... and I gave the training last year, so I can definitely help answer questions.)

- Visit each club in your area at least twice, once in the Fall and once in the Spring. The "official" visit is basically a checkup on the health of the club, how they are doing toward DCP and finding out what challenges they have where they could use some help. The district has numerous resources that many clubs are never aware of including club coaches (for clubs under 10 or 11 members), PR help and much more. As Area Governor, you will learn about District 53 and what it has to offer club members. (This will also allow you to bring some great material back to your own club!)

- District Executive Committee meetings are held about once a month, but Area Governors typically only have to attend every other month. Will Ryan, the District 53 governor, has said that some of these meetings will be done as conference calls so that will cut down on the travel and time commitment as well. (On a personal note, I have found that while some people miss these meetings they are a good opportunity to learn about Toastmasters as well as meet some great people within the District.)

Be sure to contact the outgoing Area governor to see what suggestions they might have for you as you start out as the new Area A4 Governor ! (Let me know if you don't know who that is or if you need their contact info.)

My final(?) recommendation is to "make the role your own". By this I mean to seek out the things you want to learn, think of ideas for things to do that would be enjoyable for you and/or other members and, in general, put your own style on the role of Area Governor. The more you do this, the more fun it will be for both you as well as everyone in your area !

Let me know if you have any questions. I am hear to help !

Dave Wheeler
Division A Governor, 2006-8
Our Div.A blog....

P.S. There is also a DCP for Areas and the specific items that go into it can be seen by looking at the report on the TI website that shows how Area A4 did this year....

The Toastmasters Leadership Institute (Officer Training and more) is being held on the following dates and the one at Marist is probably the most convenient ....
8:00 AM Registration starts. Full program is scheduled to be done by 1:30pm.

TLI 2 on June 30, 2007 at
Marist College, Dyson Center
3399 North Road (Route 9), Poughkeepsie, NY

TLI 3 on July 14, 2007 at
MassMutual Learning & Conference Center,
350 Memorial Drive, Chicopee, MA

TLI 4 on July 28, 2007 at
Manchester Church of Christ
595 Tolland Turnpike, Manchester, CT

More information e.g. travel directions, is available at
P.P.S. Be sure to put Nov.3rd on your calendar. Division A is hosting the Fall Conference and we are expecting it to be an incredible event! If you know anyone who would like to help out and learn what goes on "behind the scenes" please let me know! We can also help them use it to get credit toward part of their Advanced Leader award.

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