Archive for the ‘District News’ Category

Candidate for Lieutenant Governor Education and Training D69

Friday, April 4th, 2014

Christine Lennon

Christine Lennon

Christine Lennon

Over the last year I have filled the role of Lt Governor Marketing and have found the role one that is both rewarding and personally developing .One of the highlights has been being part of the Team who were given the honour of interviewing 22 Candidates at the International Convention at Cincinnati on the behalf of the members of District 69.  Throughout my 20 year membership I have been involved in training at all levels and was fortunate enough to be able to contribute to the District by heading the Toastmasters Learning Institute. Over the years I have also been a part of education teams that have reviewed and update our learning materials.

In my working life I have been involved with training for about 20 years. Training is one of my passions and I am currently employed by a Registered Training Organisation. Coupled with my Management and Communication skills will be a good knowledge base for our members.

I know that with your input, and my skills and knowledge, that I can add value and enhance and add to the knowledge of the members of District 69 as Lieutenant Governor Education and Training for District 69. I ask for your support and vote at District 69 Convention in May when I stand as Lieutenant Governor Education and Training.

Christine Lennon DTM

Lieutenant Governor Marketing D69

Report of Lieutenant Governor Marketing Christine Lennon January 2014

Saturday, February 8th, 2014

Strong Clubs not More Clubs is our theme for 2013-2014.  There were several District incentives to encourage members ofgoals District 69 to visit other Clubs to help boost their meeting numbers. Not many Areas have taken up on this. Many Clubs realised that they could do with help to get their Club membership thriving again so had enlisted the assistance of a Club Coach. Coral McVean is coordinating this for District 69. All Clubs eligible for a Coach need to use this very valuable resource to support their members and gain extra assistance. Coral’s contacts are:; Tel:07 5441 7820, Cell: 0438 417 880.  Additionally we been tidying up Clubs that haven’t been operational for some time, ensuring suspension notices had gone through. So far  five Clubs have been suspended, with possibly one more to go.

It is important for us as a District to grow our Club numbers in response to market demand. Barrie Fuller has been very busy in his role as New Clubs coordinator for District 69. He has been doing a lot of work with Corporate Clubs. Electric Club has Chartered in Eastern Division and we believe another Club very close to submitting paperwork. Aro Kia has been working tirelessly in PNG with the result that one Club chartered late December with a membership of 58 and another is in the process of doing so with a membership in the 70s. Other members of District 69 have worked enthusiastically with another three Clubs who are close to chartering.  Well done everyone.goals

Just as Clubs have goals, your District team has goals too. Ours is for our District to reach at least Distinguished status. My fantastic team is pulling out all the stops to achieve this. At TI membership is an important barometer of District health and focus so I ask all Clubs to ensure dues are paid ahead of time. I’ve heard some Clubs even have payment plans for their members. What a great idea. Let’s support our members and set a goal that 100% of our Clubs have paid their membership by the due date. This link explains how to use Club Central to lodge dues payments.

One hundred per cent of our Clubs have their Club Executive Lists in on time and 100% of the Clubs who change Executive Bi-annually had theirs in on time, well done.

It is a huge team effort to rebuild membership.  Let’s commit to retaining and building our Club membership so all Clubs are either at Charter strength or have had a growth of five members. Each of us can contribute to making our Club membership stronger and to looking after our current members.  What can YOU do?

Let’s strive to be distinguished in the way we look after our members, to meet and to exceed their expectations, consolidate and build on our numbers and work together to become a Distinguished District.

Christine Lennon

Talk Up Toastmasters! February 1 – March 31

Saturday, February 8th, 2014


presentationToastmasters love to talk, so take advantage of it. During the “Talk Up Toastmasters!” membership contest, you can encourage your members to invite guests to a special meeting where regular procedures are augmented by a discussion of Toastmasters’ many benefits. Add five new, dual or reinstated members to your roster between February 1 and March 31 to receive a special “Talk up Toastmasters!” ribbon to display on your club’s banner. Membership applications and payment for members who join between February 1 and March 31 must be received at World Headquarters or online no later than March 31. Each member’s join date as listed on the application must be in February or March. Transfer and charter members do not count for credit. In addition to the ribbon, qualifying clubs will also earn a special discount code for 10% off their next club order. Discount code expires six months from date of issue and is not valid with any other offer.

District Officer Roles Open for Nominations

Saturday, February 8th, 2014

Dear fellow Toastmaster,

There are many opportunities to develop your communication and leadership skills within the Toastmasters program.

One excellent way to develop both skills at the same time is to consider taking on a District officer role for 2014-15 (Area Governor, Division Governor or senior leadership role)

This call for nominations includes links to the following information:

1. District Leader Qualifications

2. Nominating Form

3. Officer Agreement and Release Form

4. Protocol 9.0 District Campaigns and Elections (for information)

Please return completed forms to Charlie Starrett, Chairman, District 69 Nominating Committee.

All the best,

Charlie Starrett DTM

PNG Ambassador 2013-14

Immediate Past District Governor 2013-14

Toastmasters International District 69

Where Leaders Are Made

m: 0488 493 333


Outback community learning style in action in the Territory

Friday, December 13th, 2013

Over four years ago at the District 69 Convention it was noted that while Area 9 had a significant indigenous population it did not have one indigenous member, let alone an indigenous club. The cogs of Toastmasters work slowly but persistence has its rewards.

Charles Darwin University Rural Campus is fifteen minutes from Katherine which is remote, renowned for its stunning gorge, and its not so stunning fruit bats and delicious mangoes. Toastmaster Shirley Alison planned the community indigenous workshop, found the funding and organised the participants. We had use of excellent facilities. My brief: “To instil confidence and leadership skills into the indigenous youth from remote communities in a two day workshop”.Shirley at work

My attempts to arrange the tables and chairs required guidance and knowledge of local custom that dictates that the speaker not have his or her back to anyone. This was solved by using a large semi-circle so all participants could sit in the back row.

Our participants were twenty six indigenous youth, for most of whom English is a second or third language, requiring them to translate into their native tongue and back again to speak. Few can write with ease. Most are shy, some extremely shy, and family relationships determine who can sit alongside whom, in a strictly observed respectful system. Looking around the room I begin to realise just how flexible I will need to be to adapt to their culture and expectations. My beautifully bound forty page manual, with the finely timed program, and the evaluation check books demonstrate to me how much I have to learn about how learning can effectively take place in this setting.


The workshop was evaluated by some local dignitaries including two Shire CEO’s, members of the stolen generation, the Australia Post representative who funded the workshop, Charles Darwin University staff, Marilyn Freeman the District DG and other indigenous and local interested parties.

The participants were from three different regions, Borroloola, (Borulula) Ngukurr (Nooka) and Numbulwar (Numbala). These areas are six to twelve hours away along dirt roads and divided from each other by hundreds of kilometres of impassable coastal territory, with little interaction. My standard ice-breaker hits a brick wall due to their shyness. Next we try ‘the pledge’. This works better, especially when I enthusiastically lead the reading of the pledge which concludes:

I promise to support and encourage everyone in the room, including the over enthusiastic presenters and will trust in everything they say – for today anyway, after that “Who gives a damn!!!”

Thanks to Darren LaCroix, who introduced me to ‘the pledge’.

Humour at work

Humour at work

Time for the first break: as I drink my cup of tea, I contemplate the next module “How to plan a memorable speech in ten minutes” and wonder if using mind maps is such a great idea. Shirley organises a marshal to ensure everyone stays on track. We achieve 100% muster. A performance repeated at the end of every session. We divide the group into five mixed up groups and start working on joint speeches.

They soon get the hang of the main mind maps. The groups chatter and laugh sometimes breaking into their community languages. We work on the speech mind maps built around our structure: opening overview; main points 1,2,3; supporting point telling a story, accommodating humour; followed by the close, summing-up and a call to action. Gradually the speech mind maps took form, with each of the team of five taking on one section of the speech.

The evaluation education session next, instilled the Toastmasters “Commend, Recommend, Commend” hamburger format. When we were ready to start presenting the speeches one of the young coordinators came out and wrote on the white board, “Be Game, Not Shame” in large letters. I then understood that “shy” and “shame” are interchangeable in their language. As the speeches proceeded the shyness was very visible. But the support from the stronger members of the teams for those struggling, was inspirational. No-one was ever left in shame, someone would slip in bedside those struggling to quietly help them out.

Group work on speeches

Group work on speeches

An impromptu speaking education session was made relevant by Shirley used her local knowledge to present topics that were applicable to community life. The responses might have been a bit stilted as the participants shyly answered Shirley’s open questions, BUT, the great thing was that everyone took part. Everyone had a go.

Judicious editing of the day’s video recording provided a great boost to everyone’s confidence when we played back the edited video on day 2. From this experience I learned again the power of positive laughter and also saw how well the participants could work with visual recall. Preparing the groups for the final presentation Shirley explained that for the workshop to be repeated for other communities, they had to put on an amazing final show. From then on all stops were out and everyone visibly tried their hardest demonstrating an awe-inspiring commitment to the larger community.

The feedback was hugely encouraging. The Katherine and Roper Gulf Shire CEOs said they could not believe what had been achieved in under two days. Michael Berto, Roper Gulf CEO, suggested Toastmasters should work with their eight hundred staff to lift confidence, and improve communication and leadership skills. Marilyn Freeman, District 69 Governor, shared a Toastmasters perspective. The local Postmistress, Jane, who had organised the funding presented the certificates, and finally, an indigenous woman from the stolen generation impressed on the participants the importance of being good communicators and strong leaders.

Where to from here? A Stolen Generation workshop is planned for March 2014, the Katherine club plans to meet with Roper Gulf Shire and will work on funding for future workshops. Youth Coordinator from Borroloola, Luzy, plans to join Katherine Toastmasters and she is working on bringing the Toastmaster activities to her Booroloola community. All this from a club Chartered three days after the workshop with only one experienced Toastmaster. A twelve minute video presentation on the workshop outcomes was presented at the annual Post Office community funding committee meeting in Darwin. This was well received and has put Katherine Club in a very strong position for future funding.

mindmaps1And now my “Call to action.” I believe we will have a number of workshops needing presenters in outback Australia offering funded travel and an amazing and rewarding opportunity for experienced Toastmasters. Even closer to home we may find groups, who can really benefit from increased confidence and leadership skills. My challenge to you is, as a Toastmaster, find out how you can make a difference, and in the words of our wonderful young participants “Be Game, Not Shame”.


David Burston joined Toastmasters in 2008. Currently President of Marlin Coast Club in Cairns, he has been an Area 9 Governor, Northern Division Governor, and District 69 PRO for two years and is a Toastmaster Ambassador. With help from many David condensed and documented the Speechcraft course into a one day workshop and has presented in the remote regions of Mount Isa, Alice Springs and Katherine as well as Cairns and Darwin. David is a mentor to the Katherine club and very proud of their efforts.



Friday, November 15th, 2013

How can I not start this report without mentioning the Semi-annual Conference at “the Gabba”, at which every member who attended was certainly “bowled over”?   Clare Horan as Convenor and her team produced a dazzling event on a lively wicket.   Well done team, you have set the benchmark.

Another major task completed was the second phase of District Executive (DE) training for our Division and Area Governors who have served and led you, the members, successfully so far.   Held at the Australian Institute of Management at Spring Hill on 14 and15 September, the training covered all aspects of their roles including sessions on team and membership building, social media and the TI website.    Marilyn, Ian and Christine were also able to share lessons learned at the recent International Convention and presented on the Convention from the perspective of their particular  role within District.  The third and final session of DE training will be held on 1st and 2nd of February 2014 at the same location.

Having attended a number of Area Conferences recently, either as a guest or judge, I will take this opportunity to thank the Area Governors, the co-ordinators of Area Conferences and officials for their excellent achievements in presenting their show pieces.   Listening to the contestants of the various contests, the standard at Division Conferences will be extremely high.

It is encouraging that the various DCP goals are either equal to or well in advance of the same time last year, especially the Advanced goals.  Let’s remind ourselves that the goals are markers along the way to achieving: it is what we is gained by individuals and groups along the way through achieving these goals that effectively builds our communication and leadership skills. Christmas (sorry to mention it) is almost with us, heralding the time for a well-earned break with our families whom we may have neglected due to our commitment to Toastmasters.  Enjoy the peace this time brings to you and enjoy your family and recharge the batteries.  2014 starts off with further Area Conferences, Division Conferences, TLI and DE Training. We should all pause to acknowledge how much support our families give us in our commitment to Toastmasters and I urge you to especially relish the opportunity provided through the break to enjoy the company of family and friends.   Best wishes for the months ahead and see you back refreshed and ready to go for an exciting six months.


Ian Pinker DTM


Be Distinguished

Wednesday, September 11th, 2013

Let’s Be Distinguished!

What does it mean to be ‘distinguished’?  The dictionary defines it as being ‘outstanding, noteworthy or illustrious’.

In Toastmasters our Clubs, Areas and Divisions and even our District are encouraged to achieve Distinguished status. And there are specific definitions or criteria at each level for what constitutes Distinguished, making the goal measurable.

The clubs are the basis for the process working up through areas, divisions to district level. A club is asked to focus on the 10 goals of the Distinguished Club Programme.  To achieve distinguished status an area will focus on the clubs within in it achieving distinguished status. A division must focus on the areas being distinguished, and so logically to achieve distinguished status a district needs the clubs, areas and divisions within it to be achieving.

In other words – your area, division and district cannot be outstanding or noteworthy unless your club is outstanding and noteworthy!  Why ?  Because our clubs and members are the face of Toastmasters. Without you, the organisation doesn’t exist. If you don’t achieve, we don’t achieve.

Who benefits from your club being outstanding and noteworthy?  You do!  All the members in your club do!  And all the potential members who haven’t yet discovered Toastmasters do!  You hold that key!

By ensure your club offers members and guests a dynamic learning environment where they feel safe, you are doing more than promoting Toastmasters.  You are helping others to grow:  their skills, their confidence and their self esteem. And in this way you are part of an amazing legacy for this world.

What a great way to distinguish ourselves!  Members of District 69 – let’s be distinguished!

Yours in Toastmasters

Marilyn Freeman

District 69 District Governor

When the power of love overcomes the love of power – the world will know peace!

Who was distinguished in 2012?

Wednesday, September 11th, 2013

Distinguished Clubs 2012-13

Fraser Coast Toastmasters Club
Speak Easy Toastmasters Club
Nambour Toastmasters Club
Kawana Waters Club
Browns Plains Toastmasters Club
Indooroopilly Toastmasters Club
Serendipity Toastmasters Club
Pines Toastmasters Club
Townsville Club
Willows Toastmasters Club
Townsville City Council Club
Townsville University Toastmasters
Marlin Coast Club
Kickstart Cairns
Tropic City Toastmasters Club
Mt Sheridan Club
Robina Club
Yamba Yabbies
Southport Club
Helensvale Daybreak Toastmasters Club
Griffith Guild Toastmasters
King’s Club
Elanora Early Morning Club
Uniting Club
Stanthorpe Toastmasters Club
Darling Downs Club
Compass Toastmasters Club
Inverell Breakfast Club
Lockyer Valley
Caboolture Club
Mercury’s Motivators Club
USC Speakers Toastmasters Club
Maryborough Club
Weblec Club
Redlands Club
Morning Stars Club
Algester Toastmasters Club
Kenmore Toastmasters
Brisbane City Council Toastmasters Club
Peninsula Toastmasters Club
Sandgate Toastmasters
Bunya Club
Healthy Chatterers
Western Suburbs Club
SeeChange Toastmasters Club
RBWH Toastmasters
80 George Goalsetters Club
ACS Toastmasters Club
111 Toastmasters Club
Darwin Club
Gold Coast
Summerland Toastmasters Club
Talk of The South Club
Lennox Lightning Club
Toowoomba City Club
City of Ipswich Toastmasters
Roma And District Toastmasters Club
Bribie Toastmasters Club
Rockhampton Boomerang Toastmasters
Leaders By Design
Sunshine Coast Club
Caloundra Club
Mt Gravatt Toastmasters Club
Sunnybank Club
Sunrise Toastmasters Club
Carina Toastmasters Club
Crest Toastmasters Club
Centenary Club
A P I Brisbane Club
DC Toastmasters Club
Advance Club
Young Achievers @ QUT
Stafford Heights Club
Boyd Park
C. B. D. Thursday Club
Agile Toastmasters
Cairns Toastmasters Club
Mareeba Club
Robina Sunrise Club
Twin Towns Toastmasters Club
Gold Coast City Council Club
Logan Club
MullumMagic Club
Business Focus Toastmasters Club
Jacaranda 2000 Toastmasters Club
Toowoomba Club
TT Toastmasters Club



Report of the Lieutenant Governor Marketing

Wednesday, September 11th, 2013

Report of the Lieutenant Governor Marketing

Christine Lennon DTM

To make our clubs strong we need to focus on our members.  That’s why this year my focus will be on assisting our Clubs to become strong Clubs.  A strong Club is made up of members who work to create an environment where every member’s needs are met, where every member has the opportunity to grow, fulfilling and exceeding their goals.  This way our Clubs will meet their goals.

Many Clubs in our District currently have low membership.  Over time it is usual to see an ebb and flow of membership.  Right now I see some great opportunities: opportunities that will assist us to grow as Leaders and as Communicators. Now is the time for those who have the skills to step forward and exercise these skills, to assist others to develop their skills and to retain and strengthen our Club membership.

Two exciting Club growth incentive programs have been initiated in District 69.  These are intended to motivate members and focus on different Club membership levels offered at District and also recognise and reward Clubs looking to create a learning environment.  Taking on the Club Coach role, assisting Clubs to revitalise and flourish, members also develop as leaders.

Coming soon will be another program for Areas where Clubs support Clubs to become strong and healthy. I’m looking forward over the next few months to seeing how these programs strengthen  development at Area level in District 69. I invite every member of District 69 to support, encourage and assist their club to maintain and build their membership so that every Club in District 69 is a strong Club so our individual and collective  talent, ability and potential shines bright throughout our world.

I am honoured to have been given the opportunity to work with our members and look forward to assisting you as best I can.

Yours in Toastmasters

Christine Lennon DTM

Lt Governor Marketing



Ambassador Program 2013-2014

Wednesday, September 11th, 2013


Mark Hunter – Chief Ambassador – District 69.

Recently I was selected to be District 69’s Chief Ambassador. My role is to lead a group of Ambassadors who will help facilitate the introduction of the Revitalised Education Program.

Background Information

In Toastmasters International’s 2010 Strategic Plan, the Board of Directors called for a renewed focus on leadership and a modernized communication program. Toastmasters is revitalizing the organization’s education program to meet those goals.

Members will benefit from program improvements through:

  • A greater use of technology to boost self-directed learning, to access educational materials and to connect with other members around the world;
  • A clearer path for achieving education awards;
  • Opportunities to develop real-world communication and leadership skills in a globally evolving marketplace.

The program will be launched in the second half of 2014


How can you be involved?

Any member who meets the requirements (cf link below) can become an Ambassador.    The role of the Ambassador is to visit approximately 10 clubs in their area and keep them informed of the progress of the Revitalised Education Program. The role will include:

  1. Educating other members about the revitalized program
  2. Providing updates as the project progresses
  3. Explaining the program’s enhancements
  4. Spreading the word about its benefits for Toastmasters
  5. Visiting clubs and answer members’ questions
  6. Working closely with the Chief Ambassador to share member feedback and questions


Ambassadors must be skilled and enthusiastic speakers and communicators, able to build excitement and support for the Revitalized Education Program.

Applications are now open to become an Ambassador and the form can be found at

Selection of the successful Ambassadors should be completed around September 2013. The commitment is from September 2013 through to September 2014.

Mark Hunter ATMs

World Champion of Public Speaking

District 69 Chief Ambassador