Meeting Recap: Oct. 22, 2014 (Happy Birthday! Toastmasters International)

posted Oct 27, 2014, 11:44 AM by Advanced Public Speakers Toastmasters Club   [ updated Oct 27, 2014, 11:51 AM ]
Dear APS Members and Guests,
On October 22, 1924 Toastmasters founder Dr. Ralph Smedley organized the very first Toastmasters meeting in Santa Anna California. Exactly 90 years later APS celebrated that “Happy Birthday” by engaging in some Toastmasters fellowship with members of Bay Ridge Toastmasters, who attended our meeting to capture the Traveling Gavel. Toastmaster of the Day Neerja Purang spoke of the gifts Toastmasters can bring; while the icing on the cake was a special present from APS President Georgia Jones - a three page agenda/handout that included a Toastmasters history and crossword puzzle.

The Bay Ridge raiding party consisted of 
Bob Bowes, Erlinda Gagan, Boris Yabukov, Rolando Mayorga, Dawn Cullen and Robert Guddahl. Additional guests at the birthday party were Makiko Shibakusa, Natalia Fominykh, Jenny Cheng and Myron Tucker who became the newest APS member.“Smedley” was the Word of the Day.

Marcia Berry explained “The Pumpkin Principle,” using the story of Cinderella and some personal anecdotes to caution her listeners that there is no shortcut to success.  Erlinda Gagan liked Marcia’s imaginative premise and circular speech structure, but suggested stating the message more clearly, and using a greater variety of facial expressions (why is Marcia always smiling?)

“Derek in Wonderland” was the story of Derek Chen’s recent visit to Puerto Rico, an island full of both natural and man-made wonders. Boris Yabukov complemented Derek’s vivid, descriptive language and speech organization, but thought that he needed to project a bearing, and a level of confidence commensurate with the substantial content.

Division D Champion Makiko Shibakusa is practicing for the Humorous Speech Contest at the District 46 Fall Conference on November 8. In “My Dad and ….” Makiko reveals how her Father in Japan told her never to marry an American man - which she ended up doing anyway. District Humorous Champion Brian Robinson liked the speech overall, but suggested a stronger, more definitive title was needed - one that would capture the speech essence. He advised Makiko to grab the audience by opening with a story, and only then give the salutation. He proposed increasing audience connection by adding an emotional moment. The Round Robin evaluation that followed reiterated many of Brian’s suggestions.

Georgia Jones offered Table Topics questions that got to the heart of our individual Toastmasters experience. Kadisha Currie found that her life has already been changed by Toastmasters. Some of Neerja Purang’s goals for the District involve youth leadership and focusing more on having fun meetings than only reaching numerical goals. Jenny Cheng – who recently joined Toastmasters - said her greatest mentor was a close friend who taught her to open up and truly love other people. A great Toastmaster moment for Todd McKinney was giving a humorous speech at a Toastmasters regional conference in Canada, with all expenses paid by his company.

General Evaluator Bob Bowes liked the professional quality of the APS meeting and agenda. He agreed that a speech title can be very important, and then reminded evaluators to reiterate the speech objective. He advised Table Topics respondents to play G.A.M.E.S – Grab attention, Acknowledge, Make, Examples, and Summarize. Bob called on the other members of his team, Grammarian Dawn Cullen and Timer Rolando Mayorga.

In a brief ceremony caught by many cameras, Bay Ridge then captured the Traveling Gavel from APS!

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Todd McKinney
VP Education, Advanced Public Speakers