“Outside the (home) club” in Pathways

May 23rd, 2017 | Posted by | Filed under Main, Pathways, Toastmasters

In Toastmasters Pathways Learning Experience, members indicate a “home club” for each project. Of course for non-dual members this is trivial. Their only club is their “home club” for all projects. :-)

In the current program, a member can do their speech manual project at any club, even if they are not a dual member without permission or approval. Usually, they have their filled in evaluation form as evidence of the completed project. Often this is done as a guest speaker at another club at the regular club meeting.

Beyond that members may elect to do up to 2 speech projects from any manual (2 of 10 CC manual projects and 2 of the 5 in any Advanced speech manuals) at events or in situations “outside the club environment”. These could be at Area or higher contests,  workshops at club officer training etc. Even in situations that have nothing to do with Toastmasters (work, play, or …. use your imagination :-)

To get credit for an “outside the club” speech TI does have some rules: and these are specified clearly in the tI website FAQ:

 Can I give speeches outside of my club for credit?

Yes. You are allowed to do up to two speeches per manual outside of the club environment for credit toward an educational award, as long as you receive prior approval from your vice president education. You must receive a written and oral evaluation from a Toastmaster, although the Toastmaster does not need to be in the same club as you.
Speeches given at Toastmasters club meetings are considered to be in the club environment. Speeches given at any Toastmasters event that is not a club meeting are considered to be outside the club environment.Giving a speech as a test speaker in an evaluation contest, or competing in a speech contest is considered to be an outside speech as long as it is a manual speech.

Change in Pathways…
Things are a little different in pathways. The member fills in a detail form to request approval from VP Ed/Base Camp Manager of their home club for this project. The details include: start date and  end date, description of the project and the group you will work with and a selection of either:

  • at a club other than my home club
  • outside of Toastmasters

This form is selected as an option (Add External Training) in your “Education Transcript” system of PLE (Pathways Learning Experience)
Like most things in Pathways, there is a link (not live here) for a tutorial on how to do the thing, in this case it explains the form in detail

Below is a screen shot of the instructions in PLE for doing this a look at the fields on the request form.  Enjoy!


Path: * (Select)

Project: (Select)
Planned location for completion of your assignment: *
-in a club other than my home club
-outside of Toastmasters

FreeToastHost speaks Pathways!

May 17th, 2017 | Posted by | Filed under Main


[2017-04-30 08:30:18 GMT, FTH Developer] Initial support for the new TM Pathways Educational program has now been incorporated into FreeToastHost. More details can be found at the following support forum thread:




Steve James, ACS, ALB
FreeToastHost System Developer



My comments – rather than how easy-speak did this – rollout to clubs where Pathways is available, FTH decided to put it in across all clubs…. enjoy

Good first step – some of the timing are wrong on the electives, no doubt AQ pass will get all that fixed
E.g. Prepare to Speak Professional is 18-22 minutes not 5-7



Pathways Level 3 Electives

May 12th, 2017 | Posted by | Filed under Main, Pathways, Toastmasters

Most of them… with a short description

Deliver Social Speeches

This project addresses the skills needed to compose a speech for a social occasion including a toast, eulogy, an acceptance speech and a speech…

Using Presentation Software

This project addresses the use of presentation software—from identifying topics that benefit from the use of technology to effective slide design and…

Connect with Storytelling

This project addresses storytelling techniques and descriptive skills to help make every speech relatable and interesting.

Creating Effective Visual Aids

This project addresses effective methods for choosing the best visual aid for your presentation along with the creation and use of each type.

Using Descriptive Language

This project addresses the difference between literal and figurative language along with how to determine when to use each to create vivid descriptions.

Connect with Your Audience

This project focuses on different audience types and how to address them effectively.

Make Connections Through Networking

This project focuses on how to network effectively and understanding the importance of being a professional ally to people in your network.

Focus on the Positive

This project addresses strategies for improving your personal interactions by understanding the impact of your attitudes and thoughts on daily interactions.

Inspire Your Audience

This project addresses how to present a speech in an enthusiastic and inspiring fashion to establish a strong rapport with your audience.

Prepare for an Interview

This project addresses the skills you need to identify and speak about personal strengths and present yourself well in an interview of any type.

Understanding Vocal Variety

This project addresses the importance of vocal variety when giving a speech and provides activities to develop and nurture its use.

Effective Body Language

This project focuses on how to recognize body language used when speaking publicly and how to use gestures to enhance speech content.

Active Listening

This project covers the difference between hearing and listening, and steps for exploring the ways listening helps build strong, lasting connections.


Evaluation guides and project details available on my demo personal Pathwaytracker #PathwayMK


Pathways project: being TopicsMaster

May 9th, 2017 | Posted by | Filed under Pathways, Toastmasters

Every member using pathways must deliver a speech evaluation to complete the 3rd project in Level1 of any path: Evaluation and Feedback

There is a Level2/Level3 project which requires the member to lead a TableTopics session: Active Listening.

The speech is listed as 5-7 minutes and the project states, in “Notes to the Evaluator”:

“As Topicsmaster, the member should make short, affirming statements”


“… after each speaker completes an impromptu speech, indicating he or she heard and understood each speaker”

This project, Active Listening, is an elective in seven paths and is a required project in Level2 in 3 paths:
Motivational Strategies, Team Collaborations, and Persuasive Influence.



Pathways Level 2 Insights (Toastmasters)

May 9th, 2017 | Posted by | Filed under Pathways

Level 2 is the same in all 10 paths in some ways;
- each path Level 2 has 3 projects which each requires a single 5-7 minute speech.

One project, the 3rd of 3, is in every path
Introduction to Toastmasters Mentoring” – the assignment involves presenting a speech about a time the member was a protegee and had a mentor.

For all paths, the other 2 projects include one or both of
Understanding Your Leadership Style” and  ”Understanding Your Communication Style

Some paths include both of these “Understanding” projects, other paths include

  • Introduction to Toastmasters Mentoring
  • 1 “Understanding” project
  • Another required course (e.g. Managing Time, Connect With Your Audience, Active Listening, etc.

2 paths: Motivational Strategies and Persuasive Influence, Team Collaboration include the project Active Listening, which requires the member to lead a TableTopics session. All other paths include Active Listening as an optional elective in Level3.

The “Understanding” projects both involve a questionnaire the member answers.
Pathways then presents a scoring of which types of “Style” (Leadership or Communication respectively) the member most uses based on the questionnaire.

In each project, the member is directed to *not* give a speech based on the Pathways training materials, but instead on the subject matter and optionally about their own experiences and understanding.


Older but still useful: How to Brief TT judges

May 9th, 2017 | Posted by | Filed under Contests, Toastmasters


Parts of every Toastmasters Pathways evaluation

May 8th, 2017 | Posted by | Filed under Evaluation, Pathways, Toastmasters

I created a list of all Pathways project evaluations and listed which criteria (where evaluator scores from 1 to 5) are used in each…
(see http://umeryouknow.com/?p=855)

Those criteria appear on page 2 of the 2-page feedback from of each project evaluation resource.

This article describes page 1 of the evaluation forms.

Page 1 includes 3 sections

  • Purpose Statements
  • Notes for the Evaluator
  • General Comments

Here is a simple description of common parts of each section

Purpose Statements

■The purpose of this project is for the member to …  (this statement always starts the section)
■The purpose of this speech is for the member to … (this is a common purpose statement used in many evaluations)

Notes for the Evaluator
Includes a description of what the member has done in the project before this speech and may include what to “Listen For:”

General Comments  - This section seems to be exactly the same on all 60-ish evaluation guides and contain the same 3 essay questions in the same order:

  • You excelled at:
  • You may want to work on:
  • To challenge yourself:


not everything is 5-7 Minutes in Pathways…

May 1st, 2017 | Posted by | Filed under Main, Pathways, Toastmasters

Not every speech in Pathways is 5-7 minutes…
But just like the current educational program, many of the 59-ish Pathways communication projects are 5-7 minutes at the lower levels but many are not, at higher levels,

Exceptions include:

Level 1
Ice Breaker: 4-6 minutes
Evaluation and Feedback  - Evaluation: 2-3 minutes

Electives and Path-Specific projects
Deliver Social Speeches (both 1st and 2nd speech): 3-4 minutes each

Focus on the Positive: 2-3 OR 5-7 minutes

Planning and Implementing: 2-3 OR 5-7 minutes

Reaching a Consensus: 5-7 minutes OR 20-minute exercise plus 2- to 3-minute closing statement

Planning and Implementing: 2-3 OR 5-7 minutes

Create a Podcast: 2- to 3-minute intro and 5-10-minute podcast segment

Leading in Difficult Situations:  5- to 7-minute prepared speech AND 5 to 10 minutes for impromptu responses

Manage Online Meetings: 20-25 minutes

Manage Projects Successfully: 2-3 minutes first speech and second speech: 5-7 minutes

Managing a Difficult Audience:  10-15 minutes

Question and Answer Session: 20-25 minutes

Write a Compelling Blog: 2-3 minutes

Develop Your Vision: Two 5-7 minute speeches

Ethical  Leadership:  20-40 minutes

HPL: Two 5-7 minute speeches

Lead in Any Situation:  8-10 minutes

Moderate Panel Discussion:  20-40 minutes

Prepare to Speak Professionally:  18-22 minutes

Reflect on Your Path:  10-12 minutes

Team Building: 2-3 first speech and second 2nd speech: 5-7 minutes

Distinguished Toastmaster: 5-7 first speech and second 2nd speech: 8-10 minutes


Easy-Speak Speaks Pathways

Apr 21st, 2017 | Posted by | Filed under Main, Pathways, Toastmasters

Easy-speak club – the best of class club automation website / database system – works with Pathways.

The Pathways features are enabled for clubs when their district officially has Pathways enabledes01


The new Pathways evaluation scoring gets “Personal-al”

Apr 19th, 2017 | Posted by | Filed under Main

Hmmm, Evaluations are much more standardized in Pathways than in “old” T education program.

Those details are covered in other posts here

But one issue makes me scratch my head…. The standard scoring/grading criteria that moves from feedback about the presentation to feedback about … The Person

For example, examine the scoring criteria for “Clarity:” which appears exactly the same on over 90% of the 60 or so Pathways projects

Clarity: Spoken language is clear and is easily understood (evaluator is to select 123,4, or 5)
5 – Is an exemplary public speaker who is always understood
4 – Excels at communicating using the spoken word
3 – Spoken language is clear and is easily understood
2 – Spoken language is somewhat unclear or challenging to understand
1 – Spoken language is unclear or not easily understood

5 and 4 are about the person not the presentation. I guess these would never be applied to a new member or icebreaker ?
or what exactly does “always” mean? Is it supposed to mean “always in this speech” or is the evaluator supposed to have experience with this speaker before this presentation?




Demo system for entering Pathways speech evaluation online

Apr 19th, 2017 | Posted by | Filed under Pathways, Toastmasters

Not every Pathways path is fully online…
Members may upload scanned or typed files for recordkeeeping.

I built a system for my own use to enter Evaluations


It can create a simple PDF and also email the evaluation in html format to you

The dome covers Level 1 so far


Is Consistency needed in Pathways titles?

Apr 17th, 2017 | Posted by | Filed under Pathways, Toastmasters

Grammarians/Writers: Is there value in using consistent verb or noun choice in a list of options – Looking at #Pathways #PathwaysMK electives list in level 3, for example:

which list is better?
1. Pathways Now list:
-Deliver Social Speeches
-Focus on the Positive
-Using Presentation Software
-Inspire Your Audience
-Connect with Storytelling
-Prepare for an Interview
-Creating Effective Visual Aids
-Understanding Vocal Variety
-Using Descriptive Language
-Effective Body Language
-Connect with Your Audience
-Active Listening
-Make Connections Through Networking

2. List revised to use Active verbs
- Deliver Social Speeches
- Focus on the Positive
- Use Presentation Software
- Inspire Your Audience
- Connect with Storytelling
- Prepare for an Interview
- Create Effective Visual Aids
- Understand Vocal Variety
- Use Descriptive Language •
- Use Effective Body Language
- Connect with Your Audience
- Use/Learn Active Listening
- Make Connections Through Networking

3. List revised to use present participle consistently
-Delivering Social Speeches
-Focusing on the Positive
-Using Presentation Software
-Inspiring Your Audience
-Connecting with Storytelling
-Preparing for an Interview
-Creating Effective Visual Aids
-Understanding Vocal Variety
-Using Descriptive Language
-Using Effective Body Language
-Connecting with Your Audience
-Using / Learning Active Listening
-Making Connections Through Networking

4. Who cares about consistency in such a list?


Toastmasters Pathways – 61 evaluation guides….

Apr 16th, 2017 | Posted by | Filed under Pathways, Toastmasters

Each Pathways project, each required course and each elective has it’s own project guide and evaluation resource.
Compared to evaluation guides in the CC and Advanced Communications Manuals, Pathways evaluation forms are much more standardized.

These standard Evaluation Criteria are common, rating each category from 1-5 in standard categories
Included in Almost All (

  •  Persuasive Speaking does not include any of these
  • Understanding Vocal Variety is completely unique
    I am still reviewing and may find more exceptions)

Categories included in 95% of all evaluations:

  • Clarity
  • Vocal Variety
  • Eye Contact
  • Comfort Level

Also Included in Most  (over 80%) project Evaluation Guides

  • Gestures
  • Audience Awareness
  • Interest

In addition 0, 1 or 2 other Evaluation Criteria custom sections are included for each project
A common one of these is “Topic” – though the meaning of 1,2,3,4,5 varies with the project

You can see which evaluation criteria are use in each project and access all the evaluation guides here:

Sample content from evaluation guide Criteria page:

“This criteria lists the specific goals and expectations for the speech. Please review each level to help you complete

the evaluation.

5 – Is an exemplary public speaker who is always understood
4 – Excels at communicating using the spoken word
3 – Spoken language is clear and is easily understood
2 – Spoken language is somewhat unclear or challenging to understand
1 – Spoken language is unclear or not easily understood

Vocal Variety
5 – Uses the tools of tone, speed, and volume to perfection
4 – Excels at using tone, speed, and volume as tools
3 – Uses tone, speed, and volume as tools
2 – Use of tone, speed, and volume requires further practice
1 – Ineffective use of tone, speed, and volume

Eye Contact
5 – Uses eye contact to convey emotion and elicit response
4 – Uses eye contact to gauge audience reaction and response
3 – Effectively uses eye contact to engage audience
2 – Eye contact with audience needs improvement
1 – Makes little or no eye contact with audience

5 – Fully integrates physical gestures with content to deliver an exemplary speech
4 – Uses physical gestures as a tool to enhance speech
3 – Uses physical gestures effectively
2 – Uses somewhat distracting or limited gestures
1 – Uses very distracting gestures or no gestures

Audience Awareness
5 – Engages audience completely and anticipates audience needs
4 – Is fully aware of audience engagement/needs and responds effectively
3 – Demonstrates awareness of audience engagement and needs
2 – Audience engagement or awareness of audience requires further practice
1 – Makes little or no attempt to engage audience or meet audience needs

Comfort Level
5 – Appears completely self-assured with the audience
4 – Appears fully at ease with the audience
3 – Appears comfortable with the audience
2 – Appears uncomfortable with the audience
1 – Appears highly uncomfortable with the audience

5 – Fully engages audience with exemplary, well-constructed content
4 – Engages audience with highly compelling, well-constructed content
3 – Engages audience with interesting, well-constructed content
2 – Content is interesting but not well-constructed or is well-constructed but not interesting
1 – Content is neither interesting nor well-constructed

5 – Delivers an exemplary speech about … (project specific)
4 – Delivers a compelling speech about … (project specific)
3 – … (project specific)
2 – Mentions some… (project specific)
1 – Speaks on a topic other than … (project specific)


How Mentoring changes in Toastmasters Pathways

Apr 15th, 2017 | Posted by | Filed under Pathways, Toastmasters

“Virtual Mentor” new term in Pathways
A virtual mentor is an experienced member who shares knowledge and experience in a specific area via the internet. As with a traditional mentoring relationship, the goal is to empower protégés to reach their goals.
The requirements for mentoring are the same, regardless of the vehicle for communication.”

“The Benefits of Virtual Mentorship
Virtual mentorship has a number of unique benefits because of its reliance on technology for communication.

Create a Global Community
Virtual mentorship creates a forum for Toastmasters from the global community to share experiences and support one another.

Expand Learning
Connecting with members from other cultures presents a chance to learn new methods, skills, and gain a better understanding of the world.”

And there is no “Mentee” it is a PROTÉGÉ

A protégé is any member who seeks guidance and support from a mentor to reach his or her goals.”

And TI makes a clear distinction between coaching and mentoring…


Pathways Level 1 Insights (Toastmasters)

Apr 15th, 2017 | Posted by | Filed under Pathways, Toastmasters

Level 1 is the same in all 10 paths and has 3 projects which require 4 speeches and one role as Evaluator

Level 1 – Project 1 -IceBreaker – Prepared 4-6 minute speech

Level 1 – Project 2 – Feedback and Evaluation – has 3 parts

2.1 Give a 5-7 minute speech on anything and review your feedback
2.2 At another meeting, Give a 5-7 minute speech (same speech or different) and incorporate some or all feedback
2.3 Evaluate a speech

Level 1 – Project 3 Researching and Presenting

3.1 Prepare and present a 5-7 minute speech for which you did research







Pathways Level 2 insights (Toastmasters)

Apr 15th, 2017 | Posted by | Filed under Main

Here is some detail on Level 2 – which is part of all paths.

3 courses – the 3rd course is common to all paths – Introduction to Toastmasters Mentoring, the other 2 courses always include one of 1. Understand Your Leadership Style (speech about your Leadership style or a leadership style)

the Mentoring step involves giving a speech about a time when you were a protegee

2. Understanding your Communications Style (speech about your communication style or a communication style)

Some paths use both of the “Understand …” courses, some paths replace one with something like “Active Listening”

In any event
Level 1: 4 speeches, 1 evaluator role
Level 2: 3 speeches

One example of the required speeches: Mentoring “Write and present a 5- to 7-minute speech about a time when you were a protégé. Share the impact and importance of having a mentor.”

2017 Word of The Week provided by TI on official Facebook group WOTD

Mar 6th, 2017 | Posted by | Filed under Main

2017-01-16 Loquacious
2017-01-23 Condign
2017-01-30 Recapitulate.
2017-02-13 Prodigious
2017-02-27 Nexus
2017-03-06 Disparity
2017-03-14 Ineluctable
2017-03-20 Assiduous
2017-03-20 Aplomb
2017-04-03 Contemplative
2017-04-10 Riant
2017-04-17 Resplendent
2017-04-24 Foment
2017-05-07 Resplendent
2017-05-08 Parity
2017-05-15 Condign
2017-05-22 Expiate





Unofficial guide to Getting a DTM in Pathways

Mar 5th, 2017 | Posted by | Filed under Main

With Toastmasters new Pathways educational system, the “path’ to DTM has changed…

1. Required parts – all must be done
2. Electives – do 1 from each of the 2 Elective boxes
3. DTM project is required final piece
4. All required pieces and electives may be done in any order






Toastmasters District website 2016 gallery

Jul 12th, 2016 | Posted by | Filed under Main



The 6 Rules for public speaking (plus a zeroth rule)

Nov 29th, 2015 | Posted by | Filed under Main

A list completely based on Neil Gaiman’s “8 Rules for Writing”, customized for speaking/communicating

1. Speak
Get up and speak. Put one word after another. Find the right words in your way.

2. Finish
On preparing: Finish building in your mind – and in your speech – what you want to say. Whatever you have to do to finish it, finish it.

3. Walk away
Put it aside before presenting it. Review your recorded practice sessions as if you have never seen them or heard them before.

4. Get feedback from trusted sources.
Show it, present it to friends whose opinion you respect and who like the kind of thing that this is.
** Remember: when people tell you something’s wrong or doesn’t work for them, they are almost always right. When they tell you exactly what they think is wrong and how to fix it, they are almost always wrong.**

5. Fix it.
Remember that, sooner or later, before it ever reaches perfection, you will have to let it go and move on and start to prepare to speak about the next thing. Perfection is like chasing the horizon. Keep moving.

6. .The main rule
The main rule of speaking is that if you do it with enough assurance and confidence, you’re allowed to do whatever you like. (That may be a rule for life as well as for speaking. But it’s definitely true for speaking.) So speak your story as it needs to be spoken. Speak it ­honestly, and tell it as best you can. I’m not sure that there are any other rules. Not ones that matter.

0.  Zeroth rule: Know your audience, at any and all pints of this figure out what your intended audience wants and needs…


The BETTER way to Evaluate Club Officer Training

Aug 14th, 2014 | Posted by | Filed under Main

“How good was club officer training?” in Toastmasters. Each of the 7 club officers is expected to attend club officer training every 6 months, once each 6 month term.

The quality and effectiveness of this training varies all over the map; and the training effectiveness is very poorly measured in almost all places.

District leaders and trainers, want to know this of course. The problem is, they ask the wrong questions at the wrong time.

What is usually done to evaluate club officer training:  In the final 5  (or fewer) minutes of the session, participants are asked to complete an evaluation form. Often it asks about the facilities, the presenter, the material (sometimes).

The BETTER way/ What is needed: monitoring and evaluation of the trained officers 3,6 and 12 weeks after training.
with questions like:

Essay answer and 1-4 rating: 1 Very much 2=Some 3=Little 4=None

- Have you used what you learned in club officer training in your club officer role

- Have you changed your behavior/actions based on the club officer training 

Getting this kind of data, consistently, is the key to improving club officer training.

What will it take?






Judge briefing for 2014

Dec 3rd, 2013 | Posted by | Filed under Main

Judge training for 2014

TI has online judge training which covers the basic forms and rules,

0. Judges need to be told that more than anything else – they should do their best to be fair and unbiased towards all contestants.

1. CONFLICT OF INTEREST: At Area+ (area or higher) contest, all judges become ineligible to compete in this type contest at this or any higher level this ‘season’ i.e.:
“If you agree to be a cheif judge, voting or tie breaking judge in this Area+ (area or higher) contest, YOU MAY NOT COMPETE after this in this contest type in this contest typoe season.”

2. ELIGIBILITY: All judges must be members in good standing (implied: of a club in good standing). For Area+ (area or or higher) International speech contests only: Judges must have completed a minimum of 6 speeches from the CC manual and been a Toastmaster member in good standing for the past 6 months.

3. Apart from the Chief Judge, judges do not need to concern themselves with timing of any contestant or whether the contestant was over or under time. they can ignore time completely and just judge the effectiveness of the speech/topic/evaluation ….

4. Judges do not need to concern themselves with deciding on a speaking area. Judges are free to penalize, enhance or do nothing to the score of any contestant who goes beyond the announced speaking are.

5. Judges are free to ignore the score guide and use any criteria they want. No one will see or check your scoring. This is important and part of the rules since using the guide is NOT required and is open to interpretation anyway. Note: The contestants expect the judges to use the suggested point values and criteria and TI recommends that strongly!

6. Judges need to tell the Chief Judge if they believe a prepared speech is not original ( greater than 25 % not original = speech not original)

7. Judges need to be told to destroy their scoring materials and to not discuss their decision with anyone. Note: after the contest, the chief judge will destroy all ballots, the timing record, and the tally sheet.

8. Judges need to know that they need to break their own “tie” and write down the name of the 1st, 2nd and 3rd best speakers and sign their ballot.

9. Apart from being fair and unbiased, judges should identify themselves as to what club they are a member of in case they are not permitted to judge a particular contest because of the club affiliation of any contestant – which should be determined by the Chief Judge anyway (cat Division+ no judge may be from same club a contestant represents.)

10. Judges should vote for who they thought presented the best speech/who was just the best speaker during the contest (using whatever fair and unbiased criteria they apply). Use of the recommended scoring guide is STRONGLY recommended, but its use is not enforced or audited.

11 Any other “training” and discussion of what the contest scoring guide means category by category is subjective and – in my experience – means slightly different things to different people. There is NO right answer. so it cannot be trained into judges. Maybe that sentence needs to be part of judges training.

See #0 again, That is the most important thing.


District 60 Communications and Leadership Award winners (fall 2013)

Nov 14th, 2013 | Posted by | Filed under Main

Toastmasters International District 60 Announces

Communication and Leadership Winners

Presentations at the District 60 Fall conference


Rocco Rossi and Dave Perry


Toronto, Ontario, November 16, 2013 – The District 60 (Toronto and area) Fall conference is being held at Holiday Inn Yorkdale, 3450 Dufferin St, Toronto, ON M6A 2V1 from November 15-17, 2013.

The Communication and Leadership award is presented to individuals, who are not Toastmasters, who are outstanding communicators and Leaders. An individual involved in Media, Provincial or local politics, business, or community volunteering can also be honoured.

Past recipients include: Christine Bentley (Anchor for CTV News) Nrenda Herchmer, Dr Gordon L Fleet and Ed Holder. The awards are presented at the Communications and Awards Luncheon  12:30 – 2:00 PM on November 16th.

Nominees are available for interview by arrangement. Please contact pro@Toastmasters60.com

Rocco Rossi: A successful entrepreneur and business executive, champion fundraiser, and dedicated public servant, Rocco Rossi is currently President and CEO of Prostate Cancer Canada.

His unique blend of experience intersects general management, philanthropy, public policy, politics, business strategy, and new media.

As CEO of the Heart and Stroke Foundation – one of Canada’s largest non-profit organizations – from 2004 to 2009, Rossi oversaw four consecutive years of record fundraising raising over $500 million in total and launching many new, life-saving initiatives.

His passion for public policy has led him to stand for election both for the position of Mayor of Toronto and for MPP.

At Boston Consulting Group, he provided strategic advice to Fortune 500 companies in a wide range of industries in Canada, the U.S. and Europe.

Mr. Rossi then joined TORSTAR (publisher of the Toronto Star, one of the largest circulation daily newspapers in North America), in 1996 as Vice-President, Strategic Planning & New Media. As part of an executive team that ran the Star, he rolled out a series of structural changes to the advertising, circulation and press departments, and led the newspaper’s internet and new media properties.

As Vice-President, Interactive Media at Labatt from 1999 to 2001, Rossi launched the most popular consumer beer website in the world, beer.com.

A past board member of United Way of Greater Toronto and Toronto’s Olympic Bid Committee, Mr. Rossi has been an active community builder. In fact, in 2012 he was awarded the Queen’s Jubilee Medal for his Philanthropic and Community service.

An adventurer, he has walked the fabled Camino de Santiago five times, cycled the 1900 km length of Yonge Street from Rainy River to Toronto, kayaked the 500 km from Toronto to Ottawa, and recently co-chaired an expedition to Everest Base Camp and the summit of Island Peak in support of injured Canadian veterans.

Mr. Rossi has a BA (Hons) in political science from McGill University and a Masters of Arts in politics from Princeton University. He is married to his wife of 25-years, Rhonnie, and they have a 23-year-old son, Domenic John, who attends Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Dave Perry is an accomplished senior executive who has established an international reputation as one of Canada’s premier investigators. As a result of a distinguished, 27 year career with the Toronto Police Service, Dave is called upon regularly, by various media outlets to provide expert opinion on domestic and international cases. He has been sought out by the private sector and law enforcement and governmental agencies, worldwide, to conduct seminars on investigative strategies, interviewing techniques, and major case management.

Dave’s record with the Toronto Police Service speaks for itself. Prior to retiring at the rank of Detective Sergeant, he led a number of the city’s most complex and high-profile cases.

Upon retiring from the Toronto Police Service, Dave accepted a position as an Adjunct Professor at Durham College, where he could share his passion with his students. As a member of the faculty for the highly successful LEADER program for middle managers within policing and public safety agencies, Dave won accolades from his students, who considered him a valuable mentor and invaluable resource on Public and Private Investigations, Police Foundations, and Law and Security Administration
In addition to his academic activities, Dave has been sought out to provide consulting services in such areas as Investigative Interviewing, Security and Corporate Risk Management, Labour Relations, Leadership Development, and Human Resources.

Dave has continued his work with youth through his participation in Durham Region’s Pro-Action Cops & Kids Youth Program. Dave, together with his colleagues at ISN, is happy to contribute his time and resources to assisting disadvantaged youth in our area

About Toastmasters International

Toastmasters International is a nonprofit educational organization that teaches public speaking and leadership skills through a worldwide network of meeting locations. Headquartered in Rancho Santa Margarita, California, the organization’s membership exceeds 292,000 in more than 14,350 clubs in 122 countries. Since 1924, Toastmasters International has helped people of all backgrounds become more confident in front of an audience. For information about local Toastmasters clubs, please visit www.toastmasters60.com. Follow @Toastmasters on Twitter.


Unofficial review of 2014 Toastmasters Speech Contest Rulebook changes

Oct 2nd, 2013 | Posted by | Filed under Main

The Toastmasters International Speech Contest Rulebook for 2014 has several changes that may have a dramatic impact on speech contests starting January 1, 2014.


Note – this review applies to the version of the document available on October 2, 2013 – that document may change or be revised at any time.

Note – This manual only applies to contests on after January 1, 2014

TI’s official guide to 2014 Rulebook changes:  http://www.toastmasters.org/2014rulebookchanges


  • the manual contains terminology and wording changes, making a distinction between “voting judges” and “chief judge”
  • The manual removes the “unless practical” relief for minimum number of judges at Area+ (area or higher) contests
  • the non-eligible status of District officer candidates for next July 1 starting term  - now only applies to elected positions – this means – in Districts where Area Governors are appointed – members who announce their intention to be Area Governor for the next year can still compete until July 1

wording changes – only for clarification changes include:

  • Instead of saying “contest functionaries” are not eligible to compete , the manual lists the contest roles which cannot compete in a contest in which they serve:
    “Contest chairs, chief judges, voting judges, timers, counters, sergeants at arms and test speakers may not compete in the contest at which they are serving”
  •  Several places include the change from judges to “voting judges” to distinguish “chief judge” from judges who submit a ballot

Listed next are all sentences marked as “changed” in the 2014 “Speech Contest Rulebook”:
(Changes are highlighted by rotated black square in the left margin of the rulebook)

1. Under eligibility, for all contests

  • PAGE 4  (4. The following are ineligible to compete in any Toastmasters speech contest:)
    a. “A member serving as a chief judge, voting judge or tiebreaking judge beyond the club level for a contest in which the member is still competing or intends to compete

THIS IS HUGE!! It means someone may judge at club level contests (not in the same club in which they compete) and remain eligible to compete in their area contest – even if they judge another club inside their same area!! That does mean you could judge someone and later compete against them – Hmmm, that sounds like a conflict of interest…

  • PAGE 5
    4.g. District officers or announced candidates for elected positions for the term beginning the upcoming July 1
    (added words “for elected positions” – this implies that area governor candidates can compete until July 1)
  • 5. Contest chairs, chief judges, voting judges, timers, counters, sergeants at arms and test speakers may not compete in the contest at which they are serving.
    changed from “Contest functionaries may not compete in the contest at which they are serving as a functionary”
  • B. To be a chief judge, voting judge or tiebreaking judge at a Toastmasters speech contest, you must meet all eligibility requirements identified below.
    (added detail – changed “judge” to “ chief judge, voting judge or tiebreaking judge” – also moved this from General Procedure to Eligibility)
  • (B) 4. Voting judges at all levels shall remain anonymous when practical
    (changed “judges” to “Voting Judges” and moved to Eligibility)


2. General Procedure (page 7)
(the wording changes below no longer include the words “where practical” for minimum representation or minimum number of judges - 
THIS implies contest cannot be held without the minimums of qualified judges – including 3 ballot counters!)

  • 2 . At area contests, there shall be an equal number of voting judges from each club in the area, or a minimum of five voting judges. In addition to these voting judges, a contest chair, chief judge, tiebreaking judge, three counters, and two timers shall be appointed.
  • 3. At division contests, there shall be an equal number of voting judges from each area in the division, or a mini-mum of seven voting judges. In addition to these voting judges, a contest chair, chief judge, tiebreaking judge, three counters and two timers shall be appointed. No chief judge, voting judge or tiebreaking judge shall be a member of any club in which a contestant is a member.
  • 4. At district contests, there shall be an equal number of voting judges from each division in the district, or a mini-mum of seven voting judges. In addition to these voting judges, a contest chair, chief judge, tiebreaking judge, three counters and two timers shall be appointed. No chief judge, voting judge or tiebreaking judge shall be a member of any club in which a contestant is a member.
  • 5 . At the semifinals for the International Speech Contest, there shall be an equal number of voting judges from each district, or a minimum of nine voting judges. In addition to these voting judges, a contest chair, chief judge, a tiebreaking judge, three counters, and two timers are appointed. No chief judge, voting judge or tiebreaking judge shall be a member of any club in which a contestant is a member
  • 6. At the World Championship of Public Speaking, there shall be one voting judge representing each region. In addition to these judges, a contest chair, chief judge, five qualifying judges, tiebreaking judge, three counters, and two timers are appointed. No chief judge, voting judge, qualifying judge, or tiebreaking judge shall be a member of any club in which a contestant is a member

This no statement of what is to be done if these minimums or numbers of “shall be appointed” officials cannot be fond

General Procedure (page 8)

  • K.3. The chief judge personally collects the tiebreaking judge’s ballot, which must contain all contestants ranked in order by the tiebreaking judge.
    NOTE: the above line is marked as changed – but I cannot see any change from 2013 Rulebook
    The change is actually the addition of  a) below it:a) The top portion of the ballot is not provided to the chief judge and must be discreetly discarded by the tiebreaking judge after the contest.

Below is a wording change not indicated as a change in the 2014 version

  • 5 j.When the last contestant finishes speaking, the contest chair will ask for silence until the ballot counters have collected all ballots.
    changed from
    “K . There will be one minute of silence between contestant speeches, during which the judges will mark their ballots. All judges will judge all contestants, except the chief judge, who does not judge contestants”

7. Protests and Disqualifications (page 10)

  • A. Protests are limited to eligibility and originality and shall only be lodged by voting judges and contestants. Any protest shall be lodged with the chief judge and/or contest chair prior to the announcement of the winner and alternate(s).
  • B . Before a contestant can be disqualified on the basis of originality, the contestant must be given an opportunity to respond to the voting judges. A majority of the voting judges must concur in the decision to disqualify.
  • C. The contest chair can disqualify a contestant on the basis of eligibility.
  • D. All decisions of the voting judges and qualifying judges are final.

(changed “judges” to “Voting Judges and moved to Eligibility)


Other changes – in checklists and other “non-rules” parts of the rulebook

Contest Chair Checklist, page 13

  • Page Note: If there is an entry fee for the contest, that fee must be waived for contestants. Contestants cannot be charged a fee to compete.
  • 7. Select the chief judge. See the Eligibility section in this rulebook for eligiblity requirements for a chief judge.


Chief Judge’s Checklist

  • Judges’ Briefing Checklist (page 15 , 4th item  added)  Judge’s Certification of Eligibility and Code of Ethics (Item 1170)
  • (During the Contest) 3. Resolve any eligibility or originality protests that may arise.”
    changed from “3. Resolve any protests that may arise due to judge or contestant concerns over eligibility or originality.”


Contestant’s Checklist (page 15)
Before the Contest

  • 3. Inform the contest chair of any props you plan to use. (added)

If you notice things I missed or got wrong – please let me know!


Talking Care of Your Voice – part 1 – 3 basic tips

Aug 19th, 2013 | Posted by | Filed under Main

This is one of series of posts on caring for your voice.

#1 Hydrate – keep your body hydrated, if possible, have some humidity in the air:
Dry vocal cords in a body which is dehydrated tire and roughen very quickly

#2 Rest – Short rests do help in the midst of a long day of vocal use. Long rest after long period or intensive vocal usage is needed.
Both stresses on the vocal cords: pressure and vibration made rest necessary

#3 Variety – Animate your speaking and talking. This variation gives your vocal cords more chances to stretch and relax  and move through various positions.

Keep Talking!


2013 Contest Chairs scripts: Evaluation -part 1

Jan 15th, 2013 | Posted by | Filed under Main

Based on 2013 TI Speech Contest Rulebook, I am rewriting Contest Chair scripts.

Here is part 1 of Evaluation Contest- Chair Scrip for Before the Contest ….

Link to formatted document: http://Kleinosky.com/toast/contests/script_chair_evaluation_before.doc

The less-well-formatted-here content of the document is also included below:

Overview: Two ideas for the contest chair can help lead to a great contest:

1. BEFORE the contest: Preparation before the contest is key, now you may innovate and use your best ideas to get yourself ready.

2. DURING the contest: Restrain from innovating (“Stick to the script”) to make things go smoothly.


** Contact the Contestants:

As soon as possible, as much before the contest as possible: Email and/or telephone each contestant and advise them of the venue, schedule and agenda for the contest.

Explain the purpose of the contestant briefing, when it will be done, what their options are if they cannot attend (send a representative or just not attend).

Ask each contestant if they have physical conditions which require special access or vision limitations which require audible time signaling.

Collect contact information for each contestant. This may include email address(es) and/or telephone number(s). The contact information of every contestant ho is not disqualified during the contest will be provided to the contest chair/organizer of the next level, if any, of the contest.

** Find out who the Chief Judge is and contact the Chief Judge.
Confirm that the chief Judge will be invited to speak before the contest to confirm that all contest officials have been verified and all judges have signed their eligibility forms.
The Chief Judge does NOT HAVE TO EXPLAIN the rules to the audience.

Anything beyond a quick (1 minute or so) talk by the chief judge about the rules to the audience is usually not of great benefit and onlr delays the start of the contest after all officials and contestants and the test speaker are raring to go!

The contestants need to be briefed on the rules that they compete under and the judges, timers and ballot counters need to know their roles and be briefed. The audience does not need to be briefed, although, time permitting, they may be.
However: At the club level a briefing on the contest may be done in a meeting before the contest or time, permitting, before the test speaker. This explanation of the operation of the contest can be an educational opportunity for the club. However, the best way to do it is in a meeting prior to the actual contest.

** Read the Contest Rulebook
Understand that the contest officially begins when the contest chair is introduced.

Contestant Briefing Issues:

If any contestant cannot attend the re-contest briefing, they must do 2 things before the chair is introduced to start the contest:
- Be present (have personally checked in with the Contest Chair)
- Sign the eligibility section of the contest Originality and Eligibility form (Form 1183). Each contestant must do this at every level of the contest, even if they signed the form at a previous contest level.

At Area + (Area or higher) contests:
If any contestant indicates they will not compete or may be late, contact the contestant who finished next in the previous level contest and ask if they can compete.

At Division+ (Division or District) level contest: Advise the chief judge of the alternate contestant so that if there are any judges who are members of the same club as the alternate they can be prepared to withdraw as a judge.

The speaking area is determined by the Contest Chair.
Determine the speaking area before the contestant briefing and inform the Chief Judge so they may include that information in the judges briefing.

If, during contestant briefing, the Contest Chair changes the speaking area for any reason, inform the Chief Judge immediately.

The test speaker is NOT restricted to the contestant speaking area.

Determine speaking order and write down the speaking order during the contestant briefing. You may do this at any time during the contestant briefing. It may be good to do it last in case any contestants show up late and miss part of the briefing. Attendance at the contestant briefing is NOT mandatory.

Drawing the speaking order when the maximum number of contestants are present has the best appearance of fairness to all.

You may use any fair method for “drawing the speaking order”.
You may have the contestants pick from numbered playing cards or numbered slips of paper in an envelope or any other fair to all method. Any fair system to randomly choose/ draw speaking order is allowed.

Contestant Briefing Script: This may be read verbatim or customized:

Welcome contestants.

A 5 to 7 minute test speech will be given by a test speaker, only the title and speaker’s name will be announced.

As soon as the test speech is finished, ALL contestants will leave the room and remain under the supervision of the Sergeant At Arms (SAA).

You may make notes during the test speech using materials you choose strictly for note taking. You may take those materials with you when you leave the room to prepare your evaluation.

You may use a smart phone, IPad, etc. solely for note taking purposes. You may NOT use the device to access any outside sources (apps, internet, etc.)

You may not make any telephone calls or contact anyone else after the contest begins. When all contestants have arrived in the preparation are the SAA will tell you that you may begin the preparation of your contest speech evaluation. You will have 5 minutes to complete your preparation using the materials you choose.

At the end of 5 minutes, the SAA will collect any materials you used to prepare your evaluation including any electronic devices used. The SAA may write your name on them or on a paper to be put with them and hold them until you are introduced to present your contest evaluation.

No contestant should prepare their evaluation after the 5 minute preparation period has ended.

When it is your turn to speak, the SAA will get you from the holding area and escort you to the contest room.

The SAA will return your preparation materials to you when you are introduced. You may use your preparation materials or not use them, that is up to you.

You will speak in the designated speaking area which is: … (FULLY DESCRIBE THE SPEAKING AREA)

If any contestant have special needs or require audible time signaling, make sure the contestant has provided the signaling device and given it to the times]

I will now review the contest timing:
Your timing will begin with your first verbal or non verbal communication with the audience. You must speak between 2 minutes and 3 minutes 30 seconds or you will be disqualified.
You will be given the GREEN signal at 2 minutes. The GREEN signal will remain displayed until 2 minutes 3 seconds.
At 2 minutes 30 seconds, the YELLOW/AMBER signal will be displayed. The YELLOW/AMBER signal will remain displayed until 3 minutes.
At 3 minutes the RED signal will be displayed and remain displayed until you complete your evaluation.
You are responsible to make sure you speak within the contest time limits: A contestant will be disqualified if their speech is less than one 1 minute 30 seconds or more than 3 minutes 30 seconds.
If there is a technical malfunction of the timing signals you will be given 30 seconds extra time before disqualification.
No signal will be given if you exceed the time limit.

I will introduce you by saying your name twice.

[If you have not drawn for speaking order yet during the briefing, do it now.]

[If you have not collected contact information from every contestant, do it now.]

[If any contestant has not yet filled in and signed (Form 1183): Speaker's Certification of Eligibility and Originality, have the contestant do that now.]

Does any contestant have any questions? [Answer any questions.]

[Close the Contestant Briefing:
- Ask each contestant to confirm the pronunciation of their name
- Confirm the speaking order with the contestants, make a written list for the SAA
- Remind the contestants of the starting time of the contest
- Dismiss the contestants
- Give the speaking order in writing to the SAA.


I’m not on a “journey”, thank you very much

Nov 7th, 2012 | Posted by | Filed under Main

I’m not on a TM “journey” , thank you very much
(Warning: this is a rant)

My transparent facial expressions reveal my feeling every time I cringe every time I hear someone ask someone something like, “How long have you been on your Toastmasters Journey?”

I don’t know why it bothered me, but I did not and do not like it when the word “Journey” is used like that.

I heard an Ice Breaker speech yesterday while visiting a close club as guest speaker. The young woman gave a great speech and then in the third part said , “Now I want to tell you what I see in the future part of my Journey …” and I winced inside and though, “Darn, you had me loving this 100% til now”

Then, at the speed of thought, she said, “Let me change that, because *Journey* seems to me to be a word with possibilities as a negative, I prefer the word *adventure* which is full of positivity, challenge and fun”

Thank you Emily, for a wonderful speech and for explaining to me my *issue* and giving me the solution.

Enjoy your Toastmasters (and all other) adventures!


Gag me with a Gag Order II

Nov 6th, 2012 | Posted by | Filed under Main

First it was …
Gag me with a Gag Order (http://umeryouknow.com/?p=145)
Sep 25th, 2009

Message from the Official Toastmasters Facebook Group -
From Gary Schmidt:
Effective immediately, I have asked Board members to refrain from responding to questions about policy and guidelines on social media sites and all social networks, including LinkedIn, Facebook and Ning. If you have specific questions regarding Toastmasters International policies and guidelines, please visit http://www.toastmasters.org/contactus to select the appropriate contact for your inquiry.
Members of the Board, myself included, may remain members of this forum to listen to and learn from your feedback and ideas, but will not be responding to discussions. We do value and listen to the voice of every member, not just on social networking sites, but in all forms of communication.

Well, how is that for effective oral communication?

in 2012 Intl Director CANDIDATES – people announced to be running for office – may not participate in social media on TI issues… Gag me More…


TI hits a Home Run with “Club Officer Essentials”

Nov 1st, 2012 | Posted by | Filed under Main

Toastmasters International added an online video tutorial providing club officers (and anyone) with broad, quick information about the Toastmasters educational program, the Distinguished Club Program (DCP), officer roles, meeting roles and more.

The only downer: It is Adobe Flash based – so that may stop it from being used on many mobile devices.

It is just over 20 minutes in length if you watch all the sections and click on all topics and links.

I don’t know who “marcus” is though!!

Watch it and encourage all your club officers to take 20 minutes this month to get Essential Club Officer information – Free!



The last word in introducing the speaker…

Aug 6th, 2012 | Posted by | Filed under Main

The last word in introducing the speaker…

There are many components to doing an introduction of the next speaker/role but one thing is the same in all properly done introductions. That is to have the last thing you say be … the name of the speaker.

In a toastmasters meeting, we have many introductions as we pass control of the meeting to the next role or introduce the next prepared speech.

EVERY introduction, regardless of how long it is, is best when it ends with the name of the person being introduced. In Toastmasters meetings it even helps people know when to start clapping. :-)

This does NOT mean that you may only say the person’s name once and at the end, in fact you may user the person’s name more than once. But please always end your introuction with their name.

A basic example: instead of

Please welcome up todays general evaluator, John, to describe his role and tell us what he will be doing in the meeting today.
Consider trying
Our next speaker is the general evaluator who will introduce the evaluation team. Please welcome up today’s general evaluator … John!