Club Executive Role
During 2019 (July – December) and 2020 (January – June) my focus has been on providing the best support possible for my home club at Indigo Speakers. We are a small club with a big heart! As VP Education I was keen to coach all members to select their Path and get started with their projects and speeches for Levels 1 and 2. Some have already completed those first two levels and are rocketing into Level 3.
We had experimented during the year to enable guests to join the meeting online through Zoom and have the Toastmaster in the physical venue display that from their device. This worked well for me when I was unable to travel to the venue, I just used my iPhone to connect to my Zoom room and asked the TMoD to link into same room. This enabled me to participate in the meeting fully.
By the time that COVID-19 Pandemic closed our doors for physical meetings, Indigo Speakers were already primed and ready to go with ‘Moving Meetings Online’. The experience has boosted morale and enhanced skills for members who have stepped up to present on the small screen with alacrity; stepped into the timer role with timer’s coloured background colours; volunteered to be the TMoD and others to take on a new aspect of their role as Sergeant-at-Arms.
Area Director Role
It has been challenging to juggle the demands of being an Area Director at the same time as being a club executive. Club visits were easy ( being a member of all 3 clubs in my north east corner of D73) but organising the Area Contest and the Club Officer Training took more effort.
Here in the North East region we strive to reduce the amount of travel required for physical events such as these and we try to vary the venues to cater for members in Wangaratta, the Indigo Valley and Albury Wodonga surrounds.
Often the round trip to attend such events will involve at least one hour’s drive each way. Facilitators often need to travel up the Hume Freeway from Melbourne (4 hours away). One successful strategy we used at the COT event in February was to beam in a presenter from the Southern corner of Victoria via Zoom.
That strategy saved a 6 hour journey for Kevin Broughton, DTM, our presenter on Leadership.
There have been some personal rewards for me in this season as I observe and applaud the individual development of those I serve in my clubs and Area. I am especially proud of the three regional clubs in Area 29, Albury Wodonga TM, Indigo Speakers and Wangaratta TM.
District 73 Toastmaster of the Year Award!
Reflections on the DToY
Just one week ago, on Saturday 16 May, I received the highest award from my District; District Toastmaster of the Year. I share this award collaboratively with Darrell Klar, DTM! Congratulations to Darrell Klar, DTM – your award is well deserved. This is the second time that Darrell and Carole have featured in the champion lists together; in 2017 we had both received 9 awards and gained our Triple Crowns triple fold.
This second time around award for District Toastmaster of the Year, was a beautiful gift for me in my birthday month of May and one that I am immensely proud of. My first time round I shared the award in 2017 with Tracy Green, DTM (former District Director). I especially want to thank those who nominated me for this year’s award and for the trio for selecting Darrell and Carole in 2020.
My Toastmaster journey this year has been tumultuous, challenging and rewarding. Here in my 75th year of life I can sincerely say that I ‘made a difference’ for Toastmasters in various corners of the world and particularly in District 73. It has been an honour to be the Area Director for clubs in Area N29, to visit their physical and online meetings, and to provide some guidance and observations for their club success.
As D73 Pathways Coordinator for this year I have been privileged to lead a very talented and generous team to provide guidance and training for many Pathways and Zoom focussed Toastmasters, both near and far. The recent online sessions on Moving Meetings Online program during the lockdown period were particularly gratifying and I was proud to see colleagues step up into the world of online Toastmasters with ease. A huge thank you to the team:
Christina Barbonio, Michael Clancy, Debbie Horoba, Darrell Klar, Amit Merwar, Heath Gilham and our wonderful Trio (District Director Sue Pederick, Program Quality Director Vicki Goodwin Travers, Club Growth Director Karl Hughes) for planning, promoting, presenting, facilitating and recording these events.
Another year in serving Toastmasters has enabled me to also reach the Distinguished Toastmaster status once more. As I finalise my DTM project for Pathways and await the end of my year in office as Area Director, I look forward to another plaque to add to my Victory Wall at the end of June 2020.
AKA Coach Carole