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Thursday, April 27, 2017

Speak Up Sandy Springs 4-27-17 Toastmasters Mtg Recap and 5/4 Roles

Hello fellow Toastmasters!
Please review the roles below for our next TM meeting and confirm asap with either Anastasia Pass or Alan Magee that you can fill your assigned roles or if you want to volunteer for Open role.  The recap of 4/27 meeting follows the roles.

TM - Alan Magee
TT - Melinda Schmitt
GE - Paige Kerr
Speakers: Crystal Reeves; Ralston Medouze; Reza Shah
Evaluators: Anastasia Pass; Andrea Miranda; John Calloway
Ti/V - Lisa Borowsky
Ah/Gr - Bud Otto

Recap of 4/27 Meeting: 

In lieu of our regular format of TT followed by speeches, today's meeting we had 3 presentations by members from both the Successful Club Series and Better Speaker Series.  These speeches may be given by any club member and though members do not receive credit toward completing a speech project from a manual, by doing any 2 presentations from The Successful Club Series and/or The Leadership Excellence Series they complete one component of qualifying for Advanced Leadership Bronze (ALB).  Conducting any 2 presentations from The Better Speaker Series and/or The Successful Club Series, they complete one component of qualifying for the Advanced Communicator Silver (ACS) recognition.  For further details, please view the TM International website:

After Bud Otto opened the meeting, the current Club President, Alan Magee, reminded everyone again about the April 29th Storytelling Seminar, the May 12-13 District TM Conference in Midtown, and announced that Nathan Deal has proclaimed May Toastmaster International Month!  Yeah! In addition, Alan reminded all of us that during the month of May we will be selecting a new slate of TM officers for our Club to bring in fresh ideas and new energy for 2017-18. If you're interested in serving in a particular role, please let us know.

Jim Owen, TM of the day, reviewed and filled all the roles of the day and then called on Ralston Medouze to present the Word of the Day, "mensch" yiddish noun meaning an honest, mature, responsible person.  Melinda Schmitt was the only member who used during the meeting.  The rest of the members need to try and use during the week!  Because our format was a little irregular, we broke for a few minutes to give the evaluators a chance to meet with the speakers and prepare their introductions.  Jim then turned the meeting over to the GE, Andrea Miranda, the mensch who handled the remainder of the meeting.

First of 3 speakers was Alan Magee, who gave a speech from The Better Speaker Series entitled "Selecting Your Topic".  It was filled with good nuggets about where to get topic ideas, how to shape what you select to a specific audience and how to effectively execute on your ideas.  Once TM gets in your mindset and into your blood, you start to see ideas for speeches everywhere.  Alan recommended keeping a running list and then go for it!  The 2nd speaker, Bud Otto, gave a speech entitled "Controlling Your Fear", also from The Better Speaker Series.  Bud discussed the triggers of fear, understanding those fears and several techniques we can use to relax before and during our speeches. In fact, Bud said the audience may never detect your anxiety and suggested that we just need to practice, practice, practice, aka - fake it til you make it!  The 3rd and final speaker was Stasia Pass, who gave a talk from The Successful Club Series entitled, "Making the Commitment".  She used visual aids like the board game called "Life", and compared TM to life. Often we get into TM (and the game of Life) by striving to reach a goal or end result, forgetting that it's very often the journey that makes life interesting. She handed out and reviewed "TM Promise Cards" and called all members to strive to make our club excellent by regularly participating and continuing to socially interact with each other as much as possible.

In Darbie Saunders' evaluation of Alan's speech, she said his back and forth movements from the podium were seamless and she really admires and wants to learn the outline technique he uses to write his speeches.  Crystal Reeves complimented Bud on the command he takes of the audience, how he gave many good examples in his presentation and how he employed effective body language. Melinda Schmitt in her very first evaluation ever, told Anastasia how she appreciated her use of visual aids, bullet points on the white board and her enthusiasm for the topic.  Melinda faced her fear of doing an evaluation and did an outstanding job.  And that's what TM is all about - facing one of the greatest fears of mankind - public speaking!

Ralston presented awards to Melinda Schmitt for Best Evaluator and Stasia Pass for Best Speaker.

As always, we cannot run our club without many members pitching in here and there.  Many thanks to Ralston for being Ti/V, to Melinda for her substantive feedback as Ah/Gr, to Andrea for expertly running the speaking portion of the meeting and providing good feedback, the Speakers, Evaluators and Sergeant-at-Arms and of course, to the TM, Jim Owen.  And speaking of Jim Owen, congratulations to Jim for being honored at a recent Habitat for Humanity ceremony as Volunteer of the Year!  Bravo.  Well done.  Remember to review the roles and let us know when you'd like to give your next speech.  Join us May 4 for another fun meeting!

Friday, April 21, 2017

Sandy Springs Toastmasters 4-20 Meeting Recap

Please review the roles below for Speak Up Sandy Springs  4/27 Toastmasters meeting and confirm with Anastasia Pass or Jim Owen if you can fill your role or want to volunteer to fill one!  Hope to see you there!
TM: Jim Owen
TT: No Table Topics for this week's meeting!
Speakers: Alan Magee, Bud Otto, Michael McConnell, Anastasia Pass
Evaluators: Paige Kerr, Crystal Reeves, need one or two more
Ti/V: Ralston Medouze
Ah/Gr: Lisa Borowsky
GE: Andrea Miranda
Word &/or Joke: John Calloway

4/30 Meeting Recap:

Our faithful Sergeant-at-Arms, Bud Otto, opened the meeting with the pledge.  VPE/TMAnastasia Pass, reviewed the roles for the day and reminded everyone about several TM items:  April 29th Storytelling Seminar & District Conference in Midtown, May 12-13 If interested, contact Anastasia or google on; She also mentioned upcoming club officer nominations and voting for new slate of officers for Sandy Springs Club - If you have any interest in serving as a Sandy Springs Toastmasters Officer for 2017-18, please contact Anastasia or Alan.  Lastly, Anastasia announced that at the 4/27 meeting we will have 4 speeches from the officers from either the Better Speaker Series or Successful Club Series.  It will be a fun and informative meeting for sure.

Guests Sean Dane-Kellog and Brian Hocieniec arrived and introduced themselves and looking forward to seeing them again. They were good sports participating in the Table Topics and gave us very candid feedback at the end of the meeting.  It was a pleasure to meet them.

Word of the day from Melinda Schmitt was "reiterate".  Bummer that no one successfully used during the meeting but hopefully did during the week.

Anastasia turned the meeting over to Table Topics Master, Bud Otto, who gave each member and guest a choice of an acronym or a slogan to work their magical response on.  We learned that acronyms are particularly challenging for this but guest, David Kulze, rose to the occasion and won the award with his response to the acronym, S.C.U.B.A.  Instead of what you would expect, David explained that SCUBA was a new shorthand to be used in texts or twitters meaning "Saturday Can U Be At..."  It was a really fun Table Topics session.

We broke for coffee as usual, but for now we've decided to not have members go to the expense of bringing coffee.  Instead, the club is either going to bring coffee to be used in the Campbell Stone brewers or Campbell Stone will provide the coffee.  If we provide, no cost to members.  If Campbell Stone coffee, anyone who drinks a cup just needs to chip in 50 cents to cover Campbell Stone cost.

Crystal Reeves stepped up to be Evaluator for the only Speaker of the day, Paige Kerr.  This was Paige's 6th speech "Vocal Variety" project, entitled "If I Were Miss America", in which per usual, Paige entertained us with her amusing and intriguing book report on Pillars of Earth by Ken Follet. As always, Crystal provided Paige with positive and insightful feedback on the strengths and what she liked about her presentation.  Paige Kerr won Best Speaker and Crystal Reeves won Best Evaluator. 

Jeremiah Jones, the GE for the day, was surprised with a gift card from the club, wishing him all the best on not only the upcoming birth of his first child but also on his finals next week at Mercer! Jeremiah then gave a very substantive overview of the meeting overall and suggested that all members and guests watch the Ted Talk by Amy Cuddy entitled "Your Body Language Shapes Who You Are".

Next meeting is 4/27. See you then~