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

Introducing 2017-2018 Leadership Nominees

Hello Toastmasters,

Please see below the report from the District 21 Leadership Committee with the names of nominated candidates for District 21 leadership positions for 2017-2018.

These names will be put forward for election at the District 21 Council Annual Meeting on April 22nd at the Spring Conference in Surrey.

I would like to thank all the members of the committee for their diligent work over the past few months.

Alan Warburton, District 21 Director 2016-2017


District 21 Leadership Committee Report for 2017-2018 Term

~ submitted by May Soo-Tvieta, DTM, PDG

The District Leadership Committee consists of 8 members. They are:

  • May Soo-Tveita, DTM, Past District Governor, Chair
  • Jamie MacDonald, DTM, Past Division Governor
  • Moya Webb, DTM, Past Division Director
  • Wendy Chernoff, DTM, Past Area Governor
  • Fred Jones, DTM, Past Area Governor
  • Wendy Arthurs, DTM, Past Division Governor
  • Veronica Armstrong, DTM, Past Area Governor
  • Lorraine Theron, ACG, CL, Past Area Governor

I would like to thank them for their diligence, integrity and service.

The process for selecting suitable candidates for nomination was as follows:

  1. Suitable questions with a leadership, experience and performance content were formulated.
  2. Committee members selected questions which were then asked of candidates. For each position, candidates received the same questions.
  3. Each candidate was interviewed for 30 minutes (Club Growth Director, Quality Club Director and District Director) and for 20 minutes (Division Director) by the committee, after which the committee reviewed each individual response. The committee discussed and reviewed each candidate’s suitability for the position sought.
  4. After each interview session, committee members voted on the candidate to be put forward in nomination for each position.
  5. Each candidate was then advised of the committee’s decision.

It is my honour and privilege, as chair of the District Leadership Committee, to present to you the nominations for the positions on the District Executive Council for the 2017 -2018 Toastmasters Year.

For District Team

  • District Director:                   John Sherber
  • Program Quality Director:  Michael Bown
  • Club Growth Director:         Joe Guenette

For Division Directors

  • Division A:  Jennifer Oakes
  • Division B:  Nils Erzinger
  • Division C:  Ryan Henderson
  • Division E:  Yuhan Chen
  • Division F:  Leah Cheyne
  • Division G:  Jen Li
  • Division K:  Jennifer Mlazgar
  • Division L:  Denis Lessard

This completes the report.

Thank you, everyone, for your dedication and support of District 21.


May Soo-Tvieta, DTM, PDG

District 21 Leadership Committee Chair

Raising the Bar

It’s Official!

As you can see, the Government of BC has proclaimed that February is Toastmasters Month in British Columbia.

This is a very proud time for all Toastmasters in our province and it is also an excellent time to share the many benefits of the Toastmasters program with family, friends and colleagues.

Across District 21, many clubs are celebrating Toastmasters Month with Open Houses—the perfect time to invite guests to your meetings and give your club the opportunity to win the Talk up Toastmasters Award, which runs from February 1 to March 31.




Alan Warburton, DTM, Director District 21, 2016 – 17

Club Officer Training UPDATE

How are we doing on our mid-year training?

We are flying through February and mid-year CLUB OFFICER TRAINING (COT) is ongoing, with some really strong numbers chalked up and makeup sessions slated in the next few weeks.

Last summer, our first District Officer Training saw a smashing 100% turnout: 50 out of 50! Area and Division leaders truly understand that training is the foundation of a successful Toastmasters program. With such an awesome turnout, the sky is the limit for our Club Officer Training (COT) sessions.

It’s the journey, not the destination

The feedback from the recent COT sessions has really been positive, from across the district. Having Ireland’s amazing Ted Corcoran there to inspire us was a definite bonus!

While it’s important to have 4 officers out of 7 attend the sessions, nine clubs actually achieved “7 out of 7” ribbons for their club banners.

CONGRATULATIONS on a 100% turnout to:

  • Div. A – Master Motivators
  • Div. B – Thunderbird
  • Div. C – Island Excellence
  • Div. E – Richmond TM
  • Div. E – Rich-Del
  • Div. F – Finding Vino
  • Div. F –  Speakers Advantage
  • Div. G – Toastmentors
  • Div. K – TM’s

Last summer there were 26 ribbons given out. Could it be the weather? Here is the attendance breakdown per division to date, for mid-year COT:

  • Div. A – 57
  • Div. B – 79
  • Div. C – 44
  • Div. E – 35
  • Div. F – 68
  • Div. G – 42
  • Div. K – 41
  • Div. L – 43

CHECK THIS OUT: Toastmasters “District Central” dashboards provide key club stats on clubs around the world. Look for the Training (TRN) columns that show both COT sessions for the year (9a & 9b). 

Huge THANKS to our division and area leaders, along with the many Toastmasters who gave training sessions or took part in planning the events. Your commitment permeated our training sessions with TM core values: Integrity Respect, Service and Excellence.

Our D21 total thus far? We’ve trained 402 members—that’s 38% of 1050, the total number of club officers in D21.

Note that these numbers don’t include all of our 13 remote clubs, which continue to grow with support and guidance from a dedicated group of D21 members.

There’s still time to reach 60% trained!

Makeup COT sessions in February will surely boost these numbers. Let’s shoot for 60% or more! Please check the D21 Events Calendar for a time and place that works for you.

All the best,

John Sherber, DTM, Club Quality Director, District 21