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Manatee County County Administrator’s Office

The Toast

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November/ October 2010 December Letter from 2010 the VP of PR Message from the Vice PresidentReof September Public Relations wind District Events And much more,.. Fashion Show Recap How to prepare a speech in 5 mins. Sounding Good in English And much more...

Toastmasters District 47, Division F, Area 61 Club #1197988 Power Speakers of MCG 1

Manatee County County Administrator’s Office

Letter from the Vice President of Public Relations New Power Speakers of MCG Officers

It has been my honor to serve as the Vice President of Public Relations for the past year. This 2009-2010 Toastmasters year has been an awesome one full of accomplishments, growth and fun. We had our Christmas party last year, Recognition Presentation in June, Open House in September and Fashion Show in October. If 2010 was this momentous, 2011 will certainly give us bigger and better accomplishments to look forward to, especially with these new officers on the helm: President- Stephanie Moreland Vice President of Public Relations- Phyllis Strong Vice President of Education- Mary Moeller Vice President of Membership- Renee Isom Sergeant at Arms- Chuck Froman Treasurer: Deborah Carey-Reed Secretary: Erika Barrett Members: To help the Vice President of Education, let her know what you’re trying to accomplish and within what time frame you are aiming to complete it by. This will help in planning the schedule out for a few months. Guests: Come and visit us! You’ll laugh, cry and everything in between while gaining the skills needed to be a competent communicator, leader and team player.

Achieve 5/10 goalsDistinguished Club Achieve 7/10 goalsSelect Distinguished Club Achieve 9/10 goals President’s Distinguished Club

We are distinguished!

At the half way mark in the Toastmaster year, we have completed 5 out of 10 of the DCP goals to make us a Distinguished Club! Congrats and thank you Power Speakers! Although this is a good news, we want to be a President’s Distinguished Club, which means we have to at least complete four more goals. Here’s what’s left to achieve: •2 Competent Communicators •1 Advanced Communicator •1 additional Advanced Communicator •2 new members •At least four officers have been trained between December – February. Check the Toastmasters District News for upcoming Toastmaster Leadership Institute training dates.

Simone Pet erson

Always remember: If it’s not fun, it’s not Toastmasters.

Have any questions about Toastmasters? E-mail us: toastmasters@

Power Speakers of Manatee County Government Toastmasters application

Simone Peterson, CC, CL 1112 Manatee Avenue West Bradenton, Florida 34205 941.749.3029 x6929


November/December 2010 Issue



November/December 2010 Issue

Manatee County County Administrator’s Office

Toastmasters Mission Statement

The mission of a Toastmasters club is to provide a mutually supportive and positive learning environment in which every individual member has the opportunity to develop oral communication and leadership skills, which in turn foster self-confidence and personal growth.

Member Profile Sage Kamiya 1. How long have you worked for Manatee County Government? 2 years in January.

2. Title and department?

Traffic Engineering Division Manager, Public Works Department

3. How long have you been a member of Toastmasters? I joined in October 2010.

4. How did you find out about Toastmasters? I heard from co-workers.

5. Why did you join Toastmasters?

I want to improve my public speech giving ability, since I’ve been spending more time in front of the County Commissioners.

6. What do you like about the Club?

The people are all very encouraging and positive.

7. What is your Toastmasters goal? To achieve competent communicator.

8. Any awards received or working on? I received two first place speech awards.

9. Why should employees join the Toastmasters?

Anyone interested in improving their communication should consider joining. Toastmasters provides tools from as simple as helping form thoughts for personal conversations all the way to formal professional presentations.

10. What tip would you give regarding public speaking?

Think of something you can enjoy (the topic, the presentation, the situation, etc) and have fun.

11. What do you do in your leisure time?

Leisure time seems very short, with 3 young girls at home, but I try to exercise regularly, work on my 1951 Chevy Pickup and I like most types of movies.

12. Favorite type of music?

Contemporary Christian and country music.


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Power Speakers of MCG News Meeting Dates

quite an accomplishment. And let’s not forget the Toastmaster credo, “Have Fun” while you are in front of an audience.”

For convenience of members and guests, Power Speakers of Manatee County Government will be holding meetings at Public Works and the downtown Administration Building.

With a full house the fashion show kicked off with an introduction by club president, Stephanie Moreland and was followed by Deborah CareyReed’s speech about color symbolism.

Generally, the first and second Fridays of the month meeting will be held at Public Works at 1022 26th Street East and meetings on the 3rd or 4th Friday will be held in the Manatee Room or Osprey Room on the 4th floor of the Administration Building. Everyone is invited to attend. All meetings take place from 11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

The fashion show received rave reviews:

December 17 Meeting- County Admin. Bldg. 1112 Manatee Ave. W. Bradenton Staples Room 8th floor December 24 - Christmas Eve Meeting Cancelled December 31 - New Year’s Eve Meeting Cancelled January 7, 2001 New Year Potluck Meeting 1022 26th Ave. E. Bradenton

Welcome New Members

Lynn Pierce, Information Services Gail Somodi, Ag & Resource Conservation

Lights, Camera, Success!

One employee from the Civic Center staff was so amazed with the models that she wants to come to Toastmasters and be a model in the next event and learn how to speak publicly. Many people were awed by Stacy Haag, the fashion announcer for the event. “A year ago I wouldn’t have believed that I would’ve been a commentator at such an event,” said Stacy who works in Natural Resources. She has been a Toastmasters member since April 2010. “The models were dressed so nice, this is how staff should dress every day at work,” said an employee from the Utilities Department. Models included: Moonlin Johnson, Property Management, Dale Garcia, Human Resources, Simone Peterson, Neighborhood Services, Rossina Leider and Stephanie Moreland, both of the Planning Department.

Model escorts included: Chuck Froman, Public Works, Paul Johnson, Property Management, Peyt Dewar, Neighborhood Services, Doug Power Speakers of Manatee County Govern- Means, Planning Department. ment first ever Fashion Show was a great Thanks and appreciation goes to the Civic Censuccess! Models strutted down the runway ter staff especially Rachel Harrison and Anne showcasing business, business casual and formal fall fashions. As printed in the November issue of the ManateE-zine, Manatee County Government’s employee magazine.

“This fashion show gave Toastmasters members an opportunity to plan, speak and perform,” says Stephanie Moreland from the Planning Department. “I saw a direct correlation between the fashion show and Toastmaster training. This group came together and was organized, confident, professional, and successful,” said Paul Johnson, model escort and former Toastmasters member. “To bring a group together with everyone’s busy schedule and pull this off was


November/December 2010 Issue



November/December 2010 Issue

Manatee County County Administrator’s Office

Sid Gilman is a member of MidCities Noon-Time Toastmasters Club in Arlington, Texas.

DTM= Distinguished Toastmaster

Vanwormer, Restyled Rags, Arthur Jefferson, photographer extraordinare, fashion show participants and most of all the audience who helped support our efforts. The fashion show raised about $60 which will go towards the Toastmasters general fund. We are looking forward to our next fashion show!

Member Corner Howtoprepareaspeech in 5 mins. How to stretch your skills in short time. by sid gilman, dtm

As I walked into my Toastmasters club meeting, the Toastmaster said, “You are speaker number one.” “But I’m not even on the schedule,” I stammered. “And there are only five minutes to prepare.” “That’s OK,” she said. “I know you can do it.” I always arrive five minutes before the club meeting starts. That day I was given a challenge I wasn’t sure I was up to. When you are called on to make a speech in five minutes, there are two things you can do: You can tell the person you can’t do it. Or you can take the job and do your best. After all, we are taught in Toastmasters to think on our feet. Thanks to Table Topics, we develop our ability to judge a situation and respond to it. I took the assignment. Some of us have a hip pocket speech. If you do, there’s no problem – just give that speech. But if no one has a speech ready to give, then you are left creating one on short notice. To produce a five-minute speech, you must choose a subject that is interesting to you and you are familiar with. Talk about things you are passionate about. I like airplanes. I’m a pilot and I have flown a lot, so aviation is interesting to me and I’m knowledgeable about flying. I can “hangar fly” for hours


if I find someone who shares my interest and wants to talk. (Hangar flying is talking about flying experiences – It can be done anywhere!) At that Toastmasters meeting, I searched my brain for a speech topic, and I remembered a particular flight that was full of weird happenings. I made a list of these events so I would keep them in sequence as I talked. I knew enough about that trip to relate it without notes, having told this story to several buddies. My stomach was churning when the meeting started. I mentally rehearsed the speech several times during the Table Topics portion of the meeting. I didn’t hear any responses; I was so involved with my speech. Then, the Toastmaster introduced me. “I’m on”, I thought. “Come on moths, stop fluttering around in my stomach.” Off I went into the opening of the speech and the audience seemed interested. As I went through the story I began to feel more at ease. Things were going well, and I won the ribbon for the best speech. My experience is not unique. All you have to do to give a successful speech is believe in yourself and concentrate on the job at hand. If you are familiar with your subject and are a Toastmaster, you’ll do just fine. If you find yourself in my position and you are asked to give a speech on short notice, pick a subject that is interesting to you. For example, relate “the thrill of my last vacation.” There generally is a plethora of things to talk about. Did you talk to anyone special or did something unusual happen to you on the way to your destination? Did all go smoothly, or did you encounter bumps on the way? Either way, the details make the speech interesting. Continue by telling how you went to important

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places and saw odd and wonderful sights. Even if it was a boring vacation, your slant on that could be interesting or funny and would make a fine speech. Just because you have only five minutes of preparation doesn’t mean you can’t make your message appealing and have an impact on your audience. Finish with a flurry of ideas on how you will spend your next vacation. Make them sharp and pointed (either positive or negative) to either make the audience want to go there, or convince them not to. You probably have many subjects that pique your interest. Put them into context in an interesting manner, with a great opening, a wonderful body and a super close – and the ribbon is yours. Of course it’s nicer and more comfortable to have abundant time to plan a speech. But sometimes things happen and you

have to swing with the to speak.

Guest Corner Sounding Good in English by katherine meeks

If English is not your native tongue, congratulations! Your ability to communicate in more than one language and operate in more than one culture is admirable. Linguists believe that bilingualism offers other benefits, as well: an ability to see from a larger perspective, greater resourcefulness and creativity, and a better understanding of language in general. Still, as a Toastmaster, you may feel that your non-native speaker status puts you at a disadvantage


among native speakers. I have attended many Toastmasters meetings both in the United States and abroad, and even in the U.S. there are chapters (for example at Baruch College in New York City) where the nonnative speakers outnumber the native speakers. These clubs excel and so do their members! If you’re not a native English speaker, this fact by itself will not hold you back. When English is your native language, your reading, writing and speaking skills can always be improved. But when you acquire English after your first language, there is extra room for improvement, not only with these skills but also with vocabulary, idioms, usage and cultural awareness. What are some things you can do to boost your skills in a second language? Try: • Immersion. The more you can participate in an Englishlanguage environment, the more interchanges you have with English-speaking friends or counterparts, the more your command of English will develop. • Reading. If frequent interaction with native speakers is impossible, another good technique for improving your English is reading. Extended reading in English, especially on topics that interest you, will automatically help you develop a sophisticated vocabulary and skill with the more complex structures of the language. If your reading is extensive, this vocabulary goes into passive memory and often remains for years, to be activated later through conversational exchanges. Choose material that is 90 percent understandable. You’ll be able to determine a lot of the rest from context. Over time, you’ll master English effortlessly. • Guidance and Support. If you are new to an English-language environment, try to get a teacher or a class as soon as you can who will guide you and correct your mistakes before you become too fluent. If you become fluent without this, the natural mistakes you make while learning a second language will tend to become ingrained, or “fossilized,” to use the linguistic term. After this has happened, it is virtually impossible

November/December 2010 Issue



November/December 2010 Issue

Manatee County County Administrator’s Office

Check out the official Toastmasters video.

to get rid of them, even with the help of a teacher. My experience is that you have a window of perhaps a year before full fluency – the ability to speak quickly and easily – occurs. In addition to working with a teacher, you can also prevail upon friends or colleagues to correct both your pronunciation and your grammar. I recommend both instruction and the help of friends to teach you to speak English more accurately. Your efforts will reflect well on you as an educated and professional person. While you can increase your vocabulary at any time, good pronunciation and grammar require the aid of a teacher (or dedicated native-speaker friends) at a stage before you reach full fluency. • Role Model. Choose a role model whose native language is English – someone you would like to emulate. My clients have chosen role models such as Condoleeza Rice and Richard Gere. The object here is to be able to take on a kind of Englishspeaking persona that is associated with a very positive image. This helps overcome psychological barriers to the articulation of sounds that seem unnatural. Like every language, English – because of history, mentality, and convention – has its own idiosyncratic style. What are some techniques you can use to put together speeches that will sound good to an English-speaking audience? Try: • One-Syllable Words. Don’t be afraid to use one-syllable words. They carry a special impact in English. In fact, they are more powerful than multi-syllabic words. The English language is largely based in Anglo-Saxon roots, with an overlay of Latin vocabulary that was introduced only after the Norman Conquest in 1099. To really reach the heart of an audience, use those Anglo-Saxon words, the vast majority of which are one syllable. Consider Woodrow Wilson’s view of man’s task on earth: “We are not here to sit and think, we are here to do.” (Wilson was one of the most highly-educated American presidents, a former university professor. But he knew how to use simple words powerfully).


Another good example is Churchill’s description of the service Britain’s Air Force had rendered its citizens: “Never in the field of human conflict has so much been owed by so many to so few.” John F. Kennedy’s inaugural speech contained the memorable “Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country,” which uses 80 percent one-syllable words. • Short, Pithy Sentences. In composing your speech in English, remember that short sentences are not to be avoided. Consider the opening line of M. Scott Peck’s The Road Less Traveled: “Life is difficult.” (The book remained on the bestseller list for over a decade). Or General Sherman’s memorable observation in a speech to military academy cadets: “War is hell.” Or the opening line of the Dickens classic, A Tale of Two Cities: “It was the best of times; it was the worst of times.” You will probably want to weave sentences of varying lengths into your speech for balance, but do remember that short, pithy sentences carry a lot of impact and resonate with English speakers. Making a speech in a language other than the one you grew up speaking can add to your nervousness. How can you reduce this? No doubt you feel much more relaxed in ordinary conversation. Think of your speech as simply an extended conversation. The more the audience can participate, even silently, the more engaged they will feel, and the more they will relate to you. You will also receive a personal response from the audience, and this conversational dynamic – even if modest – will help you relax. • Acknowledgement of Your Audience. At the beginning of your presentation, acknowledge your audience in some way, even if it’s only “How are you this evening?” “Nice to see so many people,” while making eye contact. Your opening remarks should reflect that you know where you are, and who the audience is – that this is not a generic presentation. (It could also be a com-

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ment about the institution, the locale, their profession, or even the local weather, if that can be appropriately related to the occasion or the content of your speech.) • Audience Response. As close as possible to the beginning of your speech, ask a question or do something that requires an audience response. For example, you might ask, “How many of you are concerned about gas prices?” (if your speech is about the oil economy) or “Does anybody know what this logo represents? (if your talk is about an organization with that logo) or “What Korean companies have you heard of?” (if your talk is about the Korean economy). Remembering a speech in your own language is difficult; remembering exactly what you want to get across in a foreign language adds to the burden. Try these tips to help you remember what to say:

• Stories and Anecdotes. Tell stories and anecdotes to illustrate your point. A client of mine told the audience this story: “Two soldiers were in a race. There was a skinny soldier carrying a fat soldier on his back, and a fat soldier carrying a skinny soldier on his back. The skinny soldier fell down shortly after he began the race. The fat soldier who carried the skinny soldier carried on and won the race.” He used this story to illustrate the effect of too large a welfare state on the fluctuations of the national economy. Not only was the story easier to commit to memory than information in another format, but it served him as an anchor for the points he wanted to make. Stories are memorable. Your audience will also remember them better, sometimes long after they’ve forgotten the


rest of your speech. • Topics and Places. Associate topics with familiar places. In order to remember a series of points you wish to touch on in your speech, try associating each point with a familiar place that you see every day. For example, associate the first point with the front door of your home, the second point with the foyer, the third point with your living room, etc. In fact, you can even practice your speech, moving from place to place as you move from point to point. This is what the ancient Greeks did. In fact, the Greek word “topos” – the root of the word “topic” – means “place.” This technique works well in any language. And what are some things you can do to boost your confidence in a foreign language? Try: • Being Yourself. If possible, tell a personal story, preferably one that is relevant to your message, or give the speech a personal note to let the audience know who you are. If it fits into the topic of your speech, mention something about one of your children, or your dog, or ordinary event in your household. Or mention your country of origin and an experience or memory from there to illustrate a point. These personal touches make your speech unique, and also perk up the audience’s interest. Moreover, if your audience can relate to you as a person, your message will be received much more openly despite presentation flaws. • Engagement and Sincerity are what the audience responds to most. These two qualities will trump technical flawlessness every time. From my own experience, the best tip of all for non-native speakers who want to improve their speechmaking capacity is to attend and participate in a Toastmasters club regularly. There you will get responses from fellow Toastmasters tailored to you individually. And other Toastmasters will benefit from your unique background and life experiences.

Toastmasters District 47 News Upcoming Events Characteristics of Effective Leaders

Monday, January 31, 2011 Location: The Gap School, 133 McIn-

November/December 2010 Issue



November/December 2010 Issue

Manatee County County Administrator’s Office

Questions? Suggestions? Comments? We want to hear from you! E-mail us:

tosh Rd, Sarasota, FL 34232 6 p.m. - 9 p.m. This program is part 1 of the Leadership Series. This program defines the qualities that determine effective leaders and helps participants their own leadership style. The Presenter will Charlene Pillot from the Sarasota Herald Tribune Toastmasters. Contact : Butch Phelps, Pre-register is $5; $7 at the door.

Toastmasters International The Value of Leadership Skills How Toastmasters club meeting roles can save your career

In tough economic times, it’s important to make yourself as valuable as possible – whether you’re holding down a job or seeking employment. Here’s a hard truth: In most companies, leaders are generally considered more valuable than those who follow. They’re paid more, allowed to plan their own schedules and given a larger share of responsibility. Given that, what would you do to redefine yourself as a leader? You could walk into any bookstore and purchase dozens of books on leadership, but they won’t build your confidence. To master a new skill, you must practice it. That includes leadership skills, from conflict resolution to time management. It’s better to market yourself as someone who not only knows about these skills, but has also put them into practice. You could hire a leadership coach, but how would you practice what you learn? And what about the expense? The fact is you need all of the above and more – without wasting time or going broke. The best solution is the Toastmasters leadership education track, beginning with the Competent Leadership manual (Item 265).

The Benefits of Club Meeting Roles

Toastmasters clubs are typically highly energized meetings where participants learn leadership in a safe and fun environment. They do this by assuming meeting roles and practicing their leadership skills in front of fellow members who constructively evaluate their performance every time they take a role. Once you join Toastmasters and try these roles, you, too, can develop your abilities without fear. Moreover, you can build specific skills with each role you perform. Take, for example, the role of timer. The timer is responsible for keeping the meeting on 9

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schedule. In this role, you use a stopwatch, a timing device and a record sheet to help speakers stay within their assigned time limits. The timer develops an awareness of how effective speeches are constructed. If the speaker only has 30 seconds left, you notice how a speech might be tightened or expanded to fill the time limit. This way, when it’s your turn to give a speech, you already know how to get to the point and control your content. This is an invaluable skill for any business leader! Another important leadership role of a typical Toastmasters meeting is that of the Toastmaster. The Toastmaster gains real-life experience as host at the meeting and as event planner before the meeting. You work with other volunteers to organize a gathering with panache. In job interviews, anyone who has participated in this role can explain the specifics of coordinating and moderating a special event with confidence and know-how. You’ll easily convince a prospective employer that it’s not just something you’ve read about – it’s something you have successfully accomplished. If you want to be appreciated for your communication skills as a leader, then taking on the role of grammarian is a perfect fit. You not only increase your vocabulary as you discover, practice and explain new words to your club; you also develop your sense of language – noticing what works and what doesn’t. Companies want and need clear communicators. That could be you.

and challenges. You also learn how to present your report clearly to the group. This role helps you nurture the habit of continually seeking to improve your meetings, your experiences and yourself. With constant improvements come greater successes. As the general evaluator, you take on leadership duties, guiding the speech evaluators to their goals. Dr. Ralph Smedley, the founder of Toastmasters International, once said, “We learn best in times of enjoyment.” That still stands today, and when you build those valuable leadership skills in Toastmasters, you’ll reap even greater rewards in your career. So, volunteer, have fun and discover the leader inside you!

November/December Rewind November 5 Best Table Topics Stephanie Moreland Best Speaker Kelli Polanski Best Evaluator Tammy Boggs

November 19 Best Speaker Renee Isom Best Evaluator Stacy Haag

December 3 Best Speaker Simone Peterson Best Evaluator Tammy Boggs

December 10 Best Table Topics Rossina Leider Best Speaker Mary Moeller Best Evaluator Stephanie Moreland

Speaking clearly, of course, relies on thinking clearly. And there’s no better way to develop critical-thinking skills than by taking on the role of general evaluator. With practice in this role, you soon walk into a club meeting alert and ready to take notes on the meeting’s triumphs


November/December 2010 Issue


The Toast November/December  

Power Speakers of Manatee County Government official newsletter.

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