Meeting Hosts:

  • Bev Leblanc (District Director)
  • Eugene Sicat (Program Quality Director)
  • Daisy Wei (Club Growth Director)

Facilitator: Jacquie Schnider, DTM, PID


Mary Schoendorfer, Vesna Ivkovic, Dan Lee Lonechild, Jacquie Schnider, Ali Haider, Catherine Secundiak, Chelsea Nelson, Chris Marsh-Williams, Christina Kruis, Chuck Leblanc, Daisy Wei, Darlene Davies, Dave Schaaf, Debbie Stearns,  Bev Leblanc, Lynnette Zotzman, Eugene Sicat, Faye Andrusiak, Joyce Allen, Judy Mooney, Katrina Aburrow, Ksenija Crnogorac, Lenore Dafoe, Liseth Garcia, Liz Chavez, Luiza-Denisa Muresan, Marcy Field, Marg Ustupski,  Michelle Ryerson, Mona Cooley, Ron MacTavish, Stacey Black, Stanley Vong, Syamal Gore, Wendy Ireland.

Review of Ground Rules: Eugene Sicat, PQD

  • Each person will be given 2 to 3 minutes to deliver their points.
  • When you speak, state your name and where you live.
  • Only one person speaks at a time, as called upon by the facilitator.
  • Speakers may be limited to new speakers at the discretion of the facilitator.
  • All points should be germane to the topic.

Guiding Principles: Respectful listening. Prevent conflict and misunderstanding. Build trust and a sense of safety among the group participants.


  • This is not a Business Meeting
  • There will be no vote
  • We will not be proposing motions, amendments, etc. but rather a sharing of opinions, experiences and perspectives.

The decision will be made at a DEC meeting in July.
Bev Leblanc, District Director: Respectful discussion to inform District leaders of your perspective.

Topic: To address volunteer (leaders and officers) fatigue, particularly with contests.

Wendy Ireland, Literally Speaking: Wendy suggests Table Topics tournament concept instead of a contest.
Ron MacTavish, Connected Communicators: Ron MacTavish urges the leadership to consider steps so Toastmasters becomes more relevant. We have to preserve excellence and make product better so people attend contests and want to become members of our club.
Chuck Leblanc, Division D Director: Chuck Leblanc shared stats regarding member and club participation in contests and their implications for sustainability.
Stacey Black: Stacey Black wonders if club officer training can be reduced to allow more energy for contests.
Vesna Ivkovic, Calgary Pace Setters: Vesna suggests scheduling contests in the spring instead of fall and keeping only two, but alternate which one to do with the International. 
Chris Marsh-Williams, Valley Echo TM in Cochrane: Suggest to try in the spring – try it for a couple of years – make motion time-oriented or re-address in 2 years. 
Lynnette Zotzman: Stating experience, neither for/against.
Dave Schaaf, Downtown City Speakers: – Suggest bringing value to members – as a small club – struggling – focus on exec – so contests are not a priority – if had 20 members might be different.
Debbie Stearns, Civil Speakers: Don’t think we need 4 contests in the year – esp. when we are mandated by TI to have training sessions 2x per year – cannot reduce that – not sure what we do – have contest season between Dec and Jan?
Michelle Ryerson, Mvp Advanced:– She is for the reduction of contests. Getting back into the in-person concept of meetings, and conferences – 4 contests will be too overwhelming to get people to come and help. 
Joyce Allen, Waters Edge: We will make the right decision as a district. Encourage all going forward and all clubs to support whatever decision we make
Liz Chavez: Goal – solution regarding workload area directors face with contests 2x per year – each contest challenges and provides opportunities for growth – only having international speech would stunt growth from having all the contests; delegating – how we direct communication – asking for – direct calls, direct texts (not broadcast)
Dan Lonechild, Division B Director: On the side of keeping the contests – but pulling reins back – only have 2-3 per year – can still rotate – i.e. international, then table topics or evaluation, etc. rotating w/ table topics, other contests we have.
Marcy Field, Fluor Communicators: Supports holding 2 contests at region conference in spring and on a rotating basis – an opportunity for people to participate numerous times – since having 2 contests – eval and intl – half of the people participating in both.
Jacquie Schnider, PID: How many have completed level 1 – ? the majority on the call – but if get more completing level 1 and level 2- develop those skills first – then would be easier to get officials – this does not need to be a permanent decision.
Catherine Secundiak, Region 4 advisor: Love some ideas – changing policy/ procedure is challenging but have seen World Headquarters allow people to experiment as we need to figure this out – become relevant again – so just because “no for now” does not mean it cannot be explored later – assistance to a leader if want to step up and try something out of the box. Just not a no right now does not mean TI/WHQ is not open to new ideas – appreciate those thoughts.
Christina Kruis: Need to come up with something new – not a person in D42 who will speak regarding the value of contests – circle of gold.
Syamal Gore: Quality has to be improved – leads to excellence from the bottom up, from the club – want to see clubs prospering – some like contest – only 1/ in 1500 we are not for 1% or 5% who benefit.
Darlene Davies, To the point: The clubs that are really doing well have a mentoring program and circle of gold. Club level – mentoring and support to people who want to be better speakers and evaluators – will create leaders. They can communicate and have passion for what they are doing.
Marg Ustapski: If only running international as your contest, members may not get the opportunity to participate outside the club; We want to allow others to have opportunities; not just focus on International.
Mona Cooley: Grateful people feel heard and understood. Hope we can come together for a solution.
Katrina Aburrow, PDD: is pro-contests – not convinced that getting rid of contests will solve Pathways issues – not sure fewer opportunities for leaders to develop skills.
Eugene Sicat, PQD: HE LIKES HOW everyone sharing, the respect we have been seeing, mention re L1/L2, promoting mentoring, love all the feedback. 
Daisy Wei, CGD: We utilize limited resources to focus on existing toastmasters, motivate them and do a good job as a mentor – bottom line – we need more members – the trend of decreasing membership going on for several years -as CGD hopes to have a magic wand to change the trend – membership decreasing – think every one of us should think about how to energize clubs, attract more members, motivate existing members. Overall – It’s time to change for D42. 
Bev Leblanc, District 42 Director: Take the next few months to think about it. Be concerned, speak out when necessary; please when speaking out – esp. in emails to other people – do so with kindness and love as that will get you results. 

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