The Toastmasters District 69 conference for 2018 was held over the weekend of the 28th and 29th of April.

Official proceedings began on Saturday morning, but a well run Toastmasters meeting and social evening were held on Friday night.  The advanced Toastmasters club, Mercury’s Motivators invited all members to attend their meeting.  The theme of the evening was ‘Let the Games begin’.   An entertaining evening involving many regular Toastmasters activities being surrounded in the theme of ‘The Olympics’.  There were many laughs and great conversations.

Saturday morning and the official opening began with a welcome from District Director Ben McCormick and the Mayor of Ipswich, Andrew Antoniolli opened the conference.  The conference Toastmaster for the weekend was Past District Director Paul Jensen DTM.  A very entertaining MC.

The Evaluation Contest hosted by Mark Snow DTM allowed our Toastmasters evaluation skills to shine.  An excellent test speech from a Toastmaster from the South, Carole McCulloch DTM.

She spoke about her ‘Mission, Impossible’, taking on the role as a virtual Pathways guide.  The evaluations were of a high standard.  Alison Cleaver from Southern Division was crowned the District champion for 2018.  Congratulations.

Our Region 12 International Director, David Fisher DTM was invited to speak with us.  David spoke about the importance of being a Club that focussed on the members.  We were all challenged to revisit our Club Mission and to truly understand what it is to empower our fellow members.  Helping others to achieve their goals is just as important as achieving our own.  Well done David on reminded us all of that important lesson.

The Table Topics Contest was held after lunch.  Melanie Wood CC/ALB hosted this contest well-run contest.  The topic on offer was ‘Not before my coffee’.  A topic that a lot of the audience could relate to.  The responses from the contestants were extremely well thought out and funny.  The very excited Karen Jurss from Central Division, had us all in fits of laughter as she explained her day and the need for coffee.  Congratulations Karen on your winning response.





The Saturday evening events meant it was time for the International Speech Contest.  Our contest Toastmaster Pam Holley ACB/ALB professionally run this contest.  8 powerful and motivational speakers from across the District all shared their stories.  A highly impressive field of speakers.  Ally Hannon from Brisbane Division was crowned the winner with her uniquely original speech about being a ‘Lighthouse’ for all her friends and family, as well as other women to be strong in their convictions.  Congratulations Ally and go well in Chicago.

Saturday’s events were topped off with plenty of food and drinking and dancing into the night.




Sunday morning the Humorous Speech Contest was held.  Last year’s winner Patrick Burns ACB/CL hosted the contest.  A very funny man in his outright kept us laughing throughout the contest.  The contestants were all very funny in their own way and the calibre of speeches was extremely high.  Clare Horan ACG/ALB from Central Division, was crowned the District Champion with her very funny speech about homemade spaghetti.  Well done Clare.

Korrin Barrrett was the guest speaker this year.  Korrin has battled illness resulting in her having all four limbs amputated.  She spoke from the heart about her struggles and triumphs.  The speech was extremely impactful on the audience and she touched everyone’s soul.  Thank you Korrin.

A number of long service badges were awarded throughout the weekend as well as a DTM to John Reghezani.  It is always wonderful to see members achieving their goals and being recognised for their contributions.







The council meeting saw the Election of the new teams for the District.  The District Director-Elect for 2018/19 is Shane Cooper DTM.   The Program Quality Director Elect is Alana Beale DTM and the Club Growth Director Elect is Barbara Nielsen DTM.  Congratulations on being elected.

Congratulations to District Director Ben and his team on a well-run conference.