Convention Incentive Winners

Earlier this year we launched an Incentive tied to the International Convention occurring this summer. The goal of this incentive was to support increased membership and club growth this program year.  The committee has met to select those that were grand prize winners for the full convention registration from August 23-26, 2017 and also the opportunity to offer alternate prizes for some additional winners.
Winners – Full Convention Registration:
  • Allan Corbett
  • Letty Louie
  • May Soo-Tveita
  • Barb Westlake
  • Jeffrey Denissen

Winner – Helping Hands Convention Registration:

  • Leah Cheyne

Winners – World Championship of Public Speaking Registration:

  • Dorothy Miller
  • Jan Ireland
  • Nils Erzinger
  • Mary Lummerding
Congratulations to all the winners, collectively you have all helped to make District 21 all that much stronger and taught us what the buzz is truly about.
Best Regards,
on behalf of the District 21 trio and managers 2016-2017

Looking for Helping Hands at Convention 2017

Coming to our doorstep this August: The most awesome Toastmaster International event of the year!

Over 2000 members from around the globe will be convening in Vancouver for the world’s biggest speech contest, along with international elections, inspiring speakers and some seriously fun global networking.

Will you be there? Pat Johnson, Past International President, most certainly will be. She’s been attending this annual event since 1987 in Chicago, Illinois and is a huge supporter of its benefits.


This year, Pat is the Host District Convention Chair, as District 21 and District 96 welcome the world to Vancouver as co-hosting districts. One of Pat’s projects is overseeing the search for a large team of energetic volunteers who will be congenial ambassadors and facilitators throughout the convention.

Q. Is the Helping Hands program still looking for volunteers? YES!

Convention attendees must pay a registration fee to cover the 3-day event. However, the first 200 members who volunteer receive a US $100 deduction in their fees.

In return, they must commit to a minimum of 10 hours of volunteer service during the convention. They also receive a custom-ordered volunteer’s vest.

“That order has to be sent in VERY SOON so we’re being proactive in confirming our volunteers,” reminds Pat. “Do check the convention highlights and Helping Hands link—right now! We expect all 200 spaces will be filled soon.”


Q. How will volunteers be assigned their roles?

Come early July, you’ll be canvassed via email about actual tasks. Make sure you respond quickly. “People get to pick, first-come first serve – so you snooze, you lose! We’re not looking for emcees here,” Pat adds. “It’s really all those supportive, non-flashy roles…but you can’t run a great convention without committed volunteers.”

Here’s Pat’s basic list of those vital volunteer roles:

  • Security at the doors, checking tickets and ushering people into certain sections of the contest. You’ve got 2300 people storming the doors, vying for best seats for the world championship, and while it’s open seating, there are people with disabilities and VIPs who need special attention.
  • Jacks and Jills of all trades, to help out as needed during contests or sessions, including handing out programs, attending the stages to support entrances and exits, or helping with props.
  • Registration for 2000+ attendees, many of whom will be visiting Canada for the first time.
  • Staffing the stores that sell TM merchandise.
  • Welcoming people at the airport, in the main hotels and on site with west coast hospitality. Where can I find a vegan restaurant? I’m looking for halal food. How to I get to the skytrain? What is a seabus?

Q. Why are volunteers important to the convention?

“I’ve been treated curtly by volunteers and I’ve been treated royally by volunteers, so they truly alter our experience.” And Pat should know—she’s attended an amazing range of conventions, from Kuala Lumpur to Las Vegas to New Orleans.

Q. Any parting thoughts to might-be volunteers?

“Just make it a priority,” says Pat. “Come September, you’ll have no regrets….and you’ll have played a part in this ultimate opportunity that happened on our doorstep in 2017.”

Check out the Helping Hands Program here and be a vital part of the 2017 International 2017, August 23 to 26 in Vancouver.

D21 team for 2017-18 keeps on growing!

Meet your 2017-2018 Club Growth Director: Joe Guenette

As your clubs work to end this Toastmasters year on a high note, our incoming district team is working behind the scenes to start the new Toastmasters year in tune and with a full orchestra!

Please join me in welcoming our District 21 Club Growth Director-Elect for 2017-2018, Joe Guenette DTM (x2)!


Joe is a dispatcher for his family’s towing company. He has seen many people struggle in the world and has set his sights on helping as many individuals as possible achieve their goals. This is why he finally joined Toastmasters (not to mention the fact he was being nagged every week from his Mother-in-law).

Joe joined Cowichan Toastmasters Club 950 in Duncan B.C. on October 1, 2009. Always a strong supporter of the Distinguished Club Program, he has a big heart around helping low member clubs grow, and helping individual members discover what’s possible for themselves.

Joe has been busy this past year working for all the Clubs in District 21 as the Club Coach Coordinator. He has learned much from this position, as well as his work with his own clubs, area and division. Joe brings that great education forward into his new position as Club Growth Director 2017-18.

Joe’s Communication Track

  • 6 Competent Communicators, 3 Advanced Communicator Bronze, 3 Advanced Communicator Silver
  • 2 Advanced Communicator Gold (1 speech left for #3)

Joe’s Leadership Track

  • 13 Competent Leader, 6 Advanced Leader Bronze, 2 Advanced Leader Silver,
  • 2 Distinguished Toastmaster, 3 Leadership Excellence

Service to his Clubs and District

  • VP Education x 9, President’s Distinguished Club 9 years, President x2, President Distinguished
  • VP Membership x 2
  • Past Area Governor / Director X 2, Distinguished and Select Distinguished
  • Past President Distinguished Division Governor
  • Immediate Past Area Director of the Year

We are still looking for a few “note”able team members:

Administration Manager (receives the District credit toward ALS)

  • Will get to know more about the inner workings of Toastmasters International! Must love “Administrivia” and be willing to put aside any other major roles in their clubs. This is a great opportunity to grow in many ways and can lead to future leadership opportunities in the District Trio.

Club Extension Chair (reports to Joe Guenette, CGD)

  • Must be technologically savvy, detail oriented, and be interested in helping people over the phone, as well as learning what it takes to lead and support a team. Will get to know amazing “go getters” throughout the District!

Club Retention Chair (reports to Joe Guenette, CGD)

  • Must be a great listener with solid communication skills and be interested in helping people over the phone, as well as in learning what it takes to lead and support a team. Will get to know, help and equip members throughout the District. Will make many new friends!

Club New Source Research Chair (reports to Joe Guenette, CGD)

  • Must enjoy research, collaborating, strategizing and connecting. This is a great position for anyone wanting to improve their sales skills, which is all about helping people make the right decisions for their future. This position will grow your ability to see possibilities others may miss.

Interested in these roles? Please contact Carol Carter or Joe Guenette.

A full list of these incoming Officers and Assistants will be made available on July 1st, at the beginning of our new Toastmasters year.


your Toastmasters District 21 Director-Elect,






Meet new D21 Leaders for 2017-2018!

Announcing our Incoming PQD and PRM
Plus More Leadership Opportunities – Apply ASAP

After two weeks of consulting past and current leaders, and many phone conversations with outstanding members across our District, we have selected a new Program Quality Director and a new Public Relations Manager for the upcoming Toastmasters year. Both these incoming leaders are dedicated to YOUR club’s success and will do their best to help co-create a positive, purposeful, inclusive and inspiring Member Experience for all our District 21 members this coming Toastmasters year.

Drum roll please… 

Help me give a warm welcome and congratulations to:

  • our new Program Quality Director, Shawn Gold, DTM
  • our new Public Relations Manager, Ashwani Kumar Sinha, ACS, ALS

Wild applause!

More on these two new leaders in a moment.

Are YOU ready to step into a new leadership opportunity?

We have many openings on our incoming leader team. Is this YOUR year to stretch further out of your comfort zone and seize the learning opportunities that service to all District 21 members provides? Please apply or request more information ASAP by sending an email to regarding the position(s) that interest you:

  • District Administration Manager (Secretary for the District – receives the Toastmasters credit toward your ALS)
  • District Finance Manager (Treasurer for the District – receives the Toastmasters credit toward your ALS)
  • District Logistics Manager (Sergeant at Arms for the District)
  • District Webmaster
  • District Parliamentarian
  • Area Director – please indicate your Division (receives the Toastmasters credit toward your ALS)
  • Assistant Area Director (do you want to job shadow this year and apply to be an Area Director next year? Great opportunity to get involved!)
  • Assistant Division Director (your information will be forwarded to the incoming Division Director for further discussion. They are assembling full teams this year!)

Our District Officer Training will take place in Tsawwassen on June 17th. All those in the above roles will be invited to attend the training event. Please apply early!

Here’s a little information about our newly appointed District Leaders!

Incoming PQD, Shawn Gold, DTM

Shawn is a 30+ year business manager with Honeywell.  He’s a strong supporter of lifelong learning; having completed many certifications along the way.  He believes in giving people the opportunity to excel in their areas of personal interest by opening the doors whenever appropriate.

Shawn loves his family, especially his grandchildren, travel and photography.

Shawn joined Richmond Toastmasters 5488 in March 2011

  • VP PR in 2011/2012
  • President 2012/2013
  • Area 53 (now 43) Governor 2013/2014
  • Division E Governor 2014/2015
  • DTM in February 2015
  • Club Mentor Lightly Toasted 4407379 2015/2016
  • Won Division E International Speech Spring 2016
  • Won Division E Table Topics Fall 2016 (placed 3rd at D21)
  • President Global Speakers 9868 from July 2016
  • President Rich-Del Toastmaster 3767 from July 2016
  • Club Coach Dragon Masters 9373 from July 2016
  • Official and unofficial District events photographer…many, many years

Shawn is currently working on his second DTM planning to complete it in time to work on a new Pathways DTM when it is launched.


Incoming PRM, Ashwani Kumar Sinha, ACS, ALS

Ashwani has been a Toastmaster for just over 3 years. He truly believes in the values of Toastmasters International – Integrity, Respect, Service & Excellence. During these years he has had the opportunity to serve the membership as Area Director and Division Director. He has also served as a VPPR, Secretary, VPE and President in the various clubs he is part of. Ashwani is very instrumental in fueling the Online Toastmasters Movement, where he chartered 3 online Toastmasters Clubs. He has also been the Public Relations Chair for previous years’ Spring & Fall District 21 Conferences. The learning in these roles has helped him immensely in his personal and professional life.

In his day job, Ashwani has been working for a Digital Hybrid Marketing Agency – Webacom Media Corporation as a Senior Strategist for the past 10 years. He has worked with several medium-to-large, profit and non-profit organizations providing them strategies to be competitive in their marketing endeavors. His educational qualifications include a PhD in Software Engineering and a Master’s in Business Administration.

Ashwani now brings his educational and professional skills to assist the Toastmasters membership in District 21 as a Public Relations Manager. Please feel free to bring up any public relations challenges to him, and he’ll be very glad to assist you.

Looking forward to hearing from you,

Carol Carter

District Director Elect 2017-2018
Toastmasters International District 21

And the winners are…

Another exciting Spring contest season has come and passed. Congratulations to our District 21 winners:

2017 International Speech Contest

1st Place will represent District 21 in the contest semi-finals at the 2017 Toastmasters International Convention, August 23 to 27 in Vancouver, B.C.

  1. Kerice Richards (Advocates)
  2. Roy Campbell (Cloverdale)
  3. Jamie MacDonald (The Professional Edge)

2017 International Speech Contest winners & dignitaries (L to R): Moya Webb (Contest Chair); KERICE RICHARDS; ROY CAMPBELL; JAMIE MacDONALD; Alan Warburton (District Director)

2017 Evaluation Speech Contest

With special thanks to test speaker Rob Evans, D96 Toastmaster

  1. Wade Paterson (Kelowna AM)
  2. Angelika Bendrich
  3. Barb Westlake (Tsawwassen)

Evaluation Contest winners & dignitaries (L to R): Moya Webb (Contest Chair); Alan Warburton (District Director); WADE PATERSON, ANGELIKA BENDRICH, BARB WESTLAKE; Margaret Page (Int’l Director)

Congratulations to all our Spring contests competitors for your memorable presentations.

You are an inspiration to your district, divisions, areas and clubs!

(See complete contestant listing)

~ Photos courtesy of Toastmaster Shawn Gold

Who will win the D21 Spring Speech Contests?

Meet the contestants!

Evaluation Contest (April 22/1:00 pm – 3:00 pm)

Division A              Suzanne Viau
Division B              Karen Burgess
Division C              Katie Healey
Division E              Barb Westlake
Division F              Angelika Bendrich
Division G             Ray Hill
Division K              Wade Paterson
Division L              Heidi Thompson

International Contest (April 23/9:30 am – 11:30 am)

Division A              Tania Ehman
Division B              Kerice Richards
Division C              Karina Sheardown.
Division E              Rome Gallardo
Division F              Jamie MacDonald
Division G             Roy Campbell
Division K              Reen Rose
Division L              Yasir Khan

Best wishes to all of you!

Every springtime, enterprising Toastmasters take the leap to reach further with their speaking skills, as the annual International Speech Contest launches in Toastmaster districts around the globe.

For the past two months, thousands of contests at club, area and division levels have tested the creativity and mettle of motivated speakers, as well as the organizers who make these events a success. District 21 also mounts a second competition, the Evaluation Speech Contest.

Everyone is a winner during speech contest season, as speakers raise the bar on themselves and audiences are impressed by their range and creativity. But in every contest, there is only one “first place.”

On April 22 and 23, the first place winners (and in some instances, the second place winner) of both contests, from eight divisions, come together to compete again at the District Spring Conference in Surrey B.C.  Guided by conference co-chairs Annie and Jennie Peng, along with host Veronica Armstrong, the weekend is jam-packed with meetings and educational sessions—but the contests are truly a highlight. This year’s District International Speech and Evaluation Contest Chair is Moya Webb. Our Chief Judge is Marion Gushue-Geiger.

On Saturday April 22, at 1:00 pm, eight division-level finalists in the Evaluation Contest listen first to a special “test speech” and then present their evaluations, resulting in a first place trophy winner.

On Sunday April 23, at 9:30 am, eight contestants in the International Speech Contest vie for the honor to represent District 21 in the semi-final rounds at the 2017 Toastmasters International Convention, to be held in Vancouver this August.

(Late sign-up: online or at registration desk on contest day)


Nobody ever said it would be easy!

Submitted by Ted Corcoran DTM, International President 2003-2004

Dear District 21 Leaders and Members,

Achieving Distinguished District status is never easy. If it were, then most districts would be successful every year, when, in fact, less than half of them are.

To remind you, a Toastmasters district is not a thing, an object, or a place, but an administrative unit consisting of every one of you.

It’s easy to work out, therefore, that when your district achieves Distinguished status, all of you can feel part of the success. When it’s not, well, you can just as easily work out what that means.

If District 21 is Distinguished by June 30th next, every one of you present at the Toastmasters Hall of Fame event, in your amazing Conference Centre downtown, can stand proudly on the stage and accept the cheers and congratulations of every Toastmaster present. That is the tribute and recognition given to you and your district for serving your fellow members so well.

I can well remember, many years ago, when as a Trio member of my district, District 71, sitting in the body of the great hall and watching members of district after district celebrating their success on stage. Our district didn’t get on the stage back then, in 1992, but sitting there, feeling downhearted and excluded from the celebrations, I was determined we would do our best to be celebrating the following year. And we were! But it took a huge team effort to do so.

Now it’s your turn to replicate this effort. And here’s why.

There are three primary goals which districts are required to achieve to be Distinguished. These are the number of paid clubs, number of member payments, and number of distinguished clubs.

Looking at the current statistics, your district seems to be on target to achieve the payments and distinguished club goal. However,  there is a worryingly big gap between the number of paid clubs and the goal. It’s not exaggerating the problem to say that your district needs at least 10 new clubs chartered between now and June 30th.

Are you ready, able, and excited to start getting this done?

It will take total commitment, persistence, and personal sacrifice to build this number of new clubs in such a short time window. The good news is that a number are already meeting, or have demo meetings planned. But, as the old proverb goes, “never count your chickens before they’re hatched”.

It may come as a surprise to many of you to learn that one of my personal heroes for many years now  has been your own much loved Terry Fox (I have  even visited his monument in Victoria). His “Marathon of Hope” was an inspiration to me and many others, not just in Canada, but around the world.

All I’m asking, is that you take inspiration from Terry’s story and set out on your own “Distinguished District” journey which, hopefully will end on the stage before the eyes of the world’s Toastmasters next August. Ten new clubs can and will be chartered. I believe that – I ask that you believe it too.

Keep the buzz buzzing. Stay all fired up and when you’re ready, get going!

See you all on the stage in August!

“Do what you can, with what you have, wherever you are”. Theodore Roosevelt

Two days to go!

With just TWO DAYS TO GO until the deadline, ELEVEN District 21 clubs have already qualified for the “Talk up Toastmasters” award:

  • Niteshifters   (Div. A)
  • Rise and Shine   (Div. B)
  • Island Excellence  (Div. C)
  • White Rock Club   (Div. F)
  • Spontaneous Speakers (Div. F)
  • Surrey Club   (Div. F)
  • Taxmasters (Div. F)
  • Chilliwack TM   (Div. G)
  • Kelowna Club  (Div. K)
  • Kelowna AM   (Div. K)
  • UBCO (Div K)

Each of these clubs will receive a beautiful ribbon for their club banner from Toastmasters International PLUS10% discount on their next order to TI.

ALSO, each club will be entered into a special District 21 draw at our Spring Conference, where FIVE winners will each receive $150 U.S. in coupons to be used at the TI store.

There is still time to win!

How do you win the “Talk up Toastmasters” award? Your club needs to gain FIVE NEW MEMBERS between February 1st and March 31st – it is that simple.

So many are so close!

We have MANY clubs who have gained THREE or FOUR new members – they are so close and…there’s just TWO days to go!

Good luck everyone!



Alan Warburton, District 21 Director, 2016-1017

Be the Best You Can Be

Fellow Toastmaster,

Contest season is in full swing. Are you a contestant? How about a judge? A big part of contest season is bringing people together. It is always a pleasure for me to meet Toastmasters from other clubs. We are all here for our own reasons  but we are all working the same program. This is where we can find the common ground to open up conversations and get to know all those people who are new to us. 

Contests bring out our best speakers. Everyone wants to improve and to see if that elusive path of moving on will be in their future.

The International speech contest in August will be the place where Toastmasters from all over the world will send their best to compete at the International convention. Last year over 150 countries were represented. It made me proud to be part of an organization that is so diverse and world wide.

Best wishes to all the contestants.

“Be the best you can be”, and challenge yourself.

It is the “journey not the destination”.

All the best,

John Sherber DTM

District 21 Program Quality Director, 2016-2017  

What’s the Deal with the Membership Requirement?

Do you know how many members your club has? Do you know how many members your club needs in order to qualify for the distinguished club program (DCP)? Now that we are finishing up with renewals let’s focus on what we need to be a distinguished club. 

The DCP is a measurement of the health of a club. Experienced Toastmasters refer their friends to distinguished clubs, these clubs mentor their members, have strong fellowship and complete educational awards. Many clubs make it a part of their culture to be distinguished each year and become known for that level of service.

So what’s the deal with the membership requirement? Interestingly Toastmasters International recommends 20 members in a club to keep meetings at a high level of quality year round, they recognize clubs lose around 40% membership each year which means 8 new members are required in a year to keep a club of 20 at 20. This explains the 4+4 concept in the DCP.

For your club to qualify for distinguished club recognition it requires at least 5 DCP points (7 for select, 9 for presidents) with 20 members OR a net gain of 5 members. This number is from your base on July 1, 2016. So if your club had 15 or more members on July 1, 2016 you require 20 members, anything less than 15 only requires that number +5 on June 30, 2017.

To see your club’s base, current membership and DCP points take a look here:

District 21, I firmly believe we can do this.  Let’s continue building our club membership for success.  Call me if you need anything.








Michael Bown DTM

District 21 Club Growth Director,  2016-2017