Celebrating a half-century adventure in Toastmasters

Embarking on a half-century journey with Toastmasters, Dave Cartledge is a living testament to the incredible power of effective communication and leadership. Speaking with this seasoned Toastmaster to celebrate his remarkable 50th anniversary, we learn of a wealth of experiences, wisdom, and invaluable lessons learned throughout this extraordinary half-century adventure. Dave Cartledge, an active member of MVP Advanced Toastmasters interviewed by Christina Kruis.

Which was the first club you joined?

Foresters Toastmaster Club, Edmonton on September 8th, 1973

With which clubs have you participated?

Foresters Toastmasters Club, Emma Collins Advanced Toastmasters, City Lights Toastmasters Club, Kitowin Toastmasters Club, Sylvan’s Slick Speakers Toastmasters Club, Lingo Advanced Toastmasters Club, Central Alberta Skytalkers Toastmasters Club, MVP Advanced Toastmasters Club   

What roles have you held in Toastmasters?

All the club executive roles. Area Governor in 1991, Area Governor in 2007 (D42 AG of the Year in Division F), Division F Governor (D42 DG of the Year in 2009 at the Grand Prairie District Conference, where I also received my Distinguished Toastmaster), Area B31 Director in District 99 in 2015, Division B Director in District 99 in 2016, District 99 Logistics Manager, Area A1 Director in District 42, Area B31 Director in District 99, sponsored over 53 members and coached clubs successfully in 2009 and 2025

Which International Conferences have you attended?

Calgary, Alberta in 2008 (supporting Martin Presse); Cincinnati, Ohio (visiting a colleague); Volunteered with Toastmasters Helping Hands (program reduces registration) in Washington, DC (supporting Joanne Smith); Volunteered in Vancouver, British Columbia (supporting Kelly Kaur and Collin Greene); Volunteered in Chicago, Illinois (supporting Russ Dantu and Malon Ketching) and Nassau, Bahamas (supporting Molly Hamilton) 

What other Toastmasters club events have you visited?

Las Vegas, Nevada (won Best Table Topics and a 40th anniversary cup); Shreveport, Louisiana (helped judge a speech contest); Houston, Texas (won Best Table Topics); Fargo, North Dakota (special invite to a corporate club in Microsoft); Ottawa, Ontario (challenging Table Topics); Winnipeg, Manitoba (Theme was Bankers and other Saints); Saskatoon, Saskatchewan; Drayton Valley, Alberta; Beaumont, Alberta; Leduc, Alberta

Is there one person or event that stands out in your memory after all these years?

Our charter President of my first club – Ken Thomas, is 97 years young today and a good friend! Dr. Ralph Smedley was very inspirational.  Receiving my DTM and Division Governor of the Year awards are very fond memories.
In Edmonton, I was encouraged by City Lights Toastmasters to attend the K Days Exhibition and challenge myself to be a TV anchor person. I went in my Klondike costume, read a teleprompter and was interviewed by the well-known TV anchorman – Table Topics 101 – which ended up on YouTube!
In Red Deer, I joined the Centennial Rotary club and promoted Toastmasters giving me an opportunity to give a TEDx presentation. I coached other speakers – including our Red Deer Mayor. They put my presentation on YouTube!

How did Toastmasters Leadership help you in the Real World?

  • Parliamentarian for an AGM of my Alberta Veterinary Medical Association (ABVMA) where I helped shorten their AGM by 3 hours!
  • My Canadian Veterinary Medical Association (CVMA) adopted the same motion and shortened their AGM to ½ hour!
  • The Rotary 5360 District (in Southern Alberta) asked me to give a very well-attended presentation on Toastmasters in Medicine Hat.
  • I moderated a political rally in Rimbey, Alberta.
  • I emceed an AGM for the Alberta Equine Association in Red Deer and encouraged members (including many lawyers) to not defeat resolutions if possible but refer the issues to a committee – giving the Association a much-needed arrangement to obtain continued funding from the province.

What three things you enjoy most about being a Toastmaster?

Friendly comradery, awesome storied speeches and the opportunity to visit great people in many locations around the world 

MVP Advanced Toastmasters roasted Dave at their annual Christmas party and President Shelley Musfelt led us in a musical toast to Dave. You might know the tune so sing along with us as we toast Dave and his 50 years of Toastmasters.

Dave, you’re 50 years with Toastmasters Fa, La, La La, La La La La

Wow! Dave really is a long laster Fa, La, La La, La La La La

Mr. Ralph Smedley, his first mentor Fa, La, La La, La La La La

Weekly meetings, at the men’s center Fa, La, La La, La La La La

Attends District Clubs in 42 and 99 Fa, La, La La, La La La La

So many clubs, where does Dave find the time? Fa, La, La La, La La La La

Loves his Oilers, lives in Red Deer Fa, La, La La, La La La La

Karaoke, Dances, Dave – he enjoys a beer Fa, La, La La, La La La La

Dave helps out with coaching and mentorship Fa, La, La La, La La La La

Thank you Dave, for all your leadership Fa, La, La La, La La La La

Advanced, we are stronger, with Dave with us Fa, La, La La, La La La La

Raise your glasses! 50 Years!  Miraculous! Fa, La, La La, La La La La

We are honoured to have Dave in our club and in our District. What an incredible legacy and certainly an outstanding half-century adventure worth celebrating!!

Christina Kruis, DTM

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