Once a Toastmaster, Always a Toastmaster

by Vicky Iozzia, DTM

In November, it will be 29 years since I became a Toastmaster. I have held all club offices many times, been Area Governor and Division Governor, and been a Distinguished Toastmaster (DTM) three times.

My life has taken me in many directions besides Toastmasters. For many years, I participated in programs at the Ellie Schiller Homosassa Springs State Wildlife Park and was on the Friends of the Park board. I am a retired Guardian ad Litem. Currently, I am a writer for Citrus Life Magazine. I am also the President of the League of Women Voters of Citrus County. All these activities have required me to use skills learned and practiced in Toastmasters.

Although I am not as active in Toastmasters (except that I am currently a Club President), I carry the experience and knowledge I gained from Toastmasters with me. More times than I can count, I refer to the Toastmasters experiences to help me.

For instance, many people are not familiar with Robert’s Rules of Order. I learned about them from Toastmasters.

We have officers in each chapter of the League. Unfortunately, unlike Toastmasters, there is no standard, regularly scheduled training program for officers.

I host our meetings and have no problem speaking in front of our groups. Over the years, I have sharpened these skills in Toastmasters, which has helped me hone my skills so that I don’t even get nervous doing this.

I was a huge fan of the Legacy program and still have not embraced Pathways, but I am grateful that I was recently able to use my leadership skills to have a team evaluate my performance as President of my League chapter.

THANK YOU, Toastmasters! I carry you in my mind and in my heart as I continue to do the volunteer activities I so enjoy in my retirement.

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