Friday, April 29, 2011

Tip of the Week: Starting on Time!

A few months ago we moved back our official meeting time to 12 noon.  We’ve seen that this earlier starting time is helping us finish by 1:00 and get everyone back to work on time.  Be sure to try to leave the office a few minutes early so you can arrive at SkyBridge C at or before noon!
By Jason Kent, VP of Education

Thursday, April 28, 2011

March & April Speeches

March started with the International Speech Contest (3/2) and the Evaluation Competition (3/9). On 3/16 Amy VanCamp delivered her Ice Breaker, sharing with us the different places she lived and how she came to run her own coffee business in Texas, moved to Portland and started her own PR firm. Craig Jones told a story of "borrowing" someone's boat for a  mission impossible that ended up with hauling down to the police station.

Jackie Scherer shared a „crazy story” of persistence during the 3/23 meeting. From getting up early and hitting the peak slopes in Oregon, California and Utah, to teaching her kids to never say “I can’t”. Time after time, injury after injury, she’s always gotten back up on her skies. Bachir Salpagarov took us on a trip to Karachay. We climbed the snowy peak of Mt. Elbrus, visited his home city, learned about the Karachay language, customs and traditions and a rich diversity that was sheltered from the rest of the world by the Iron Curtain and news of war and terrorism in the surrounding regions. One of the seven republics of the Northern Caucasia suddenly became very close to us.

The last meeting in March brought Sarah Skinner's meaningful story of learning from mistakes. Did you know failure is just succeeding at the wrong thing? Carrie Henderson, a seasoned speaker of Electric Toasters, proved that we toast, too, and we toast well! Carrie was mastering her toast for a dear friend, Carol.

April brought some interesting speeches as well. On 4/6 Jason Kent presented El Salvador from a perspective of  a Habitat for Humanity volunteer. Jason went to South America to build houses for a community of Salvadorians without real homes.

April was rich in great speeches as well. During the 4/1 meeting Laurel Vallarta talked about the extreme sleeping techniques (demonstration included!) and Jeff Brooks introduced his new best friend, who happens to swallow a lot of objects but seem to be now back on track with focusing on nice bones to chew instead.

On 4/20 Mike Fajen spoke about diet and how three things are suspects in people’s health problems: gluten, sugar and dairy products. Guest Shane Kennedy practiced for the division speech contest with the Socratic Warrior theme and a speech about his experience at Marine officer candidate school.

Open House on 4/27 had Ania Osińska-Bulloff delivered a speech on a desire to travel the world from the comfort of one's own home, the invention of the Airstream, and where the vehicle has taken people in the world and in their lives.

Published by Ania Osińska-Bulloff, VP of Public Relations

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Sneak peek from our Open House meeting today:

Thanks to everyone who participated and/or contributed!

By Ania Osinska-Bulloff, VP of Public Relations

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Our new member, Amy VanCamp, Says Hi

Hi all,

I’m Amy VanCamp and I am lucky enough to own my own communications business. While I work harder now than any other job I’ve had, I love being “the boss of me.”   It offers me the flexibility to attend functions at my two boys’ schools (yes, this includes visits with the principal) and to be more involved in their day-to-day activities. I work with great people, on fun projects that make a difference in our community. Pretty fortunate, for sure.
Toastmasters has been something I’ve wanted to join for years, but not unlike scheduling a dentist appointment, I found reasons to put it off. I have such stage fright -- and an experience in college were I had to act in a play and I totally froze -- that I didn’t think I could do it.  I sought out a friend who is deeply involved in the organization to help me get started, and his story of what got him involved prompted me to visit the Electric Toasters club. The reception was warm and welcoming, and here I am a new member having just finished my first icebreaker—and I didn’t faint!
I’ve always had a hard time shutting off work and relaxing. It’s something I’ve wanted to adjust in my life for sometime.  An ancillary positive outcome of joining Toastmasters is I pay attention differently now–thinking about how what I’m doing (or not doing) would shape up into a speech, or contribute to a table top topic. 
I love to travel and recently went to New Orleans, New York and this upcoming May, Paris, France. Whee and Oui!

By Amy VanCamp

Downtown Division Speech Contest is this Thursday – two Electric Toasters are competing!

Come out and support your fellow Electric Toasters Jason Kent and Kerry Dugan as they represent Electric Toasters and Area 71 in the Downtown Division International Speech and Evaluation Contest this Thursday, April 21, 6:30 PM, at the ODOT Building, 123 NW Flanders St. The entrance is on the corner of NW 2nd and Flanders. Jason will be competing in the International Speech Contest, and Kerry will be competing in the Evaluation Contest. Admission is free and there will be food!  Come watch some great speeches and evaluations and cheer on your buddies Jason and Kerry!  

By Jason Kent, VP of Education

Monday, April 11, 2011

Electric Toasters Electrify

Tonight was a night of victory. Both of our club members, Jason Kent and Kerry Dugan, won the shiny gold in the International Speech Contest and the Evaluation Contest respectively. Both looked into the eyes of the anonymous Toastmaster audience, kept cool and delivered beautifully crafted speeches, that moved everyone in the auditorium. Check out a few sneak peaks from tonight:
Jason Kent sharing a story of the best gift he's ever received
A real Oscar moment: Kerry with his trophy
The winners: Kerry and Jason.
See you at the Downtown Division Contest
for the next round of the speech and evaluation contests
on April 21st!
By Ania Osińska-Bulloff, VP of Public Relations

Tip of the Week: Area Speech Contest is tonight!

Come out and support your fellow Electric Toasters Jason Kent and Kerry Dugan as they represent Electric Toasters in the Area 71 International Speech and Evaluation Contest tonight, Monday April 11, 6:00 PM, at the Good Samaritan Hospital campus, Building #2, Auditorium.  The address is 1040 NW 22nd Ave, Portland, OR 97210. It is on the corner of NW Marshall and 22nd. Jason will be competing in the International Speech Contest, and Kerry will be competing in the Evaluation Contest. Admission is free and there will be food!  Come watch some great speeches and evaluations and cheer on your buddies Jason and Kerry! 

By Jason Kent, VP of Education

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Hello from our new member

My name is Lacey Garrett, and I am currently working for NW Natural in our Marketing Department. I have worked for NW Natural for the passed 6 years and have had the opportunity to work in a many different departments. My current role at NW Natural is managing a program offered to our customers called Service Solutions.

I attended the University of Utah on a full ride scholarship for swimming and received my associated degree in Marketing and then transferred to Portland State receiving my Bachelors’ Degree in Graphic Design.

When I am not working I enjoy spending time with nieces and nephew. I also enjoy going to the gym, hiking, and taking spinning classes at the gym. When time allows I also spend time volunteering for the Special Olympics and at the Hands on of Portland.

With this experience I am hoping to gain better public speaking skills and also be more confident when speaking. I tend to get very nervous and laugh when I speak. I hope through this I can break those habits. I am very excited and ready to dive in!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

How we doin’? (Part 1)

Tip of the Week:  Every good organization, large, tiny, or in between, has a system to determine if it is meeting its standards for success.  Toastmasters is no different.  Toastmasters International has developed the Distinguished Club Plan (DCP), a series of 10 goals that clubs may use to gauge their progress and whether they are meeting the goals of their members.  Six of the ten goals are tied to the Toastmasters Educational program, two are tied to club membership growth, one is related to officer training, and one is related to administrative goals.

Clubs are asked to meet at least five of the ten DCP goals to reach the respected “Distinguished Club Status” over the course of a Toastmasters year (July through June).  If a club meets 7 or 8 goals, they reach “Select Distinguished Club” status.  And reaching 9-10 goals gives a club the coveted “President’s Distinguished Club” status. Our club receives a ribbon for our banner – which we will reveal next week!!! – each year we earn Distinguished Club status.  Electric Toasters has met or exceeded Distinguished Club status the last two years.  A recent history of Electric Toasters Distinguished Club status is below.

In Electric Toasters, the club President and VP-Education are tasked with tracking our member’s progress toward their own goals and collectively as they relate to the DCP. As of now, Electric Toasters has met six of the ten DCP goals.  If we stopped now, we would be recognized as a Distinguished Club.  However, we have another three goals squarely in sight, so we have a good chance to become a President’s Distinguished Club for the first time since 2004! 

We have another method to determine our success as a club – I will write about that in next week’s “Tip of the Week.”  Below is a summary of Electric Toasters DCP goals and our status towards meeting them.

Electric Toasters 2010-2011 Distinguished Club Program Status
Goal #1 – Two CC’s.  Status – Close to meeting.  Sarah Mammen received her CC award; Laurel Vallarta is three speeches away from her CC.
Goal #2 – Two More CC’s.  Status – Likely will not meet.  Ania Osinska-Bulloff is the only other person within striking distance of receiving a CC award.
Goal #3 – One AC Advanced.  Status – Have met.  Carrie Henderson received her ACB.
Goal #4 – One More AC Advanced.  Status – Close to meeting.  Chris Trappe is two speeches away from her ACB.
Goal #5 – One AL Advanced.  Status – Have met.  Jason Kent received his ALB.
Goal #6 – One More AL Advanced.  Status – Close to meeting.  Craig Jones is one speech away from his ALB.
Goal #7 – Four New Members.  Status – Have met.  Mike Fajen, Steve Wilcox, Jake Haas, and Amy Van Camp are new members since July 1, 2010.
Goal #8 – Four More New Members.  Status – Have met.  Sean Byram, Jackie Scherer, Chris Trappe, and Stephen Connor are also new members.
Goal #9 – Minimum of Four Club Officers Trained During Each Of Two Training Periods.  Status – Have met. 
Goal #10 – One Membership Renewal Report Submitted On Time AND One Club Officer List Submitted On Time.  Status – Have met. 

Electric Toasters Distinguished Club History
President's Distinguished Club - the highest level of recognition available. The club met the membership prerequisite and achieved at least nine of the 10 goals.
Select Distinguished Club - the club met the membership prerequisite and achieved seven or eight of the 10 goals.
Distinguished Club - the club met the membership prerequisite and achieved at least five of the 10 goals.

By Jason Kent, VP Education