Fall District Council Meeting

Greetings, fellow Toastmasters!

Four weeks from tomorrow, Saturday, October 29th, is our District 68 Fall Conference at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel in Kenner!  I hope that you all have saved that date and are planning to join us.  You’ll be receiving additional information about registration shortly.

At 2:45 PM on the day of the conference, we will hold our fall business meeting of the district council.  (Note: You do not have to be registered for the conference to attend only the business meeting.)  Bryan Jolley, PDG, will serve as the Parliamentarian at the meeting.  The draft agenda has been provided below with links to documents for review.  Please review these items prior to the meeting.

1) Review of District Mission
2) Presentation of Credentials Report
3) Presentation of Audit Committee Report
4) Adoption of Budget (please review the budget using these links – PDF File / Excel File)
5) Presentation of Financial Report (P&L Statement)
6) Confirmation of DEC appointments
7) Approval of District Procedures (to be forwarded separately for review)
8) District Success Plan update (this is a living document and can be updated by the DEC as needed, but we are presenting this copy for the council’s information – PDF File)

At the district council business meeting, each club president and vice president education in attendance is entitled to one vote. However, if either or both officers cannot attend, they may designate, in writing, any other active member of their club to act as a proxy or proxies for their club by using the District Council Meeting Proxy Form.  (Please email completed proxies to Tina Guillot, dd@d68tm.org, or have your proxy holder provide the form to the Credentials Chair, Rebecca Arnett, IPDD, prior to the meeting.)  No other proxies are valid at this meeting, per District Administrative Bylaws Article X: Council Meetings, Quorum, Proxies, and Voting, Sections (d) Proxies and (e) Voting:

“In the event one of those officers is not in attendance at the meeting and has not designated, in writing, an active individual member of the club to act as his or her proxy at such meeting, the officer or proxy holder in attendance shall be deemed to hold the proxy of the other and may therefore cast two votes at such meeting.

“Each member of the district council in attendance at a council meeting, or his or her proxy as authorized by subparagraph (d) hereof, is entitled to one vote. Any active individual member who carries the proxies of both the club president and vice president education from a member club is entitled to two votes; and any such individual member who is also entitled to a vote as a member of the district executive committee is entitled to three votes. All other members of the district council shall be limited to a maximum of two votes.“

If you have any questions at all, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me.  I’m always happy to help.

Tina Guillot, DTM
District 68 Director

District Leadership Committee

Greetings, fellow Toastmasters,

The District Leadership Committee is charged with nominating candidates for district office. The purpose of the committee is to find the best-qualified candidates possible to serve as district leaders. The work of the District Leadership Committee (DLC) is critical to ensuring long-term success for the district. Led by the committee chair, committee members screen district leader candidates for eligibility and ultimately nominate the best individuals.

It is my pleasure to appoint Bryan Jolley, DTM, PDG, as the District Leadership Committee Chair for the Spring 2017 elections.  I’ll be working with Bryan over the next few weeks to appoint committee members.  If you have experience serving in a district role and would like to be considered to serve on this team, please email me at dd@d68tm.org no later than Saturday, October 15, 2016.  Team appointments will be finalized and announced by November 1.

Tina Guillot, DTM
District 68 Director

It’s time to join the choir!

Greetings, fellow Toastmasters!

As you know, our District 68 theme for the year is “Harmony.”  I love how multiple voices create one amazing sound!  The more voices we have, the better, so it’s time for you to join the choir.  You can do that by signing up for one or two of our committees on the District 68 website.  Click here to go directly to the committees page.  We’ve provided specifics about each committee and a link at the bottom of the page that will take you to the form to sign up.  Not completely convinced?  Watch my video to learn more.

We encourage you to join one or two committees that would most benefit from your time and talents.  The choir needs you!

All my best!

Tina Guillot, DTM
District 68 Director

Appointment of New Club Growth Director

Greetings, fellow Toastmasters,

It is with great pleasure that I announce the appointment of Joel Dawson, member of Evangeline Toastmasters and reigning District 68 International Speech champion, to the role of District 68 Club Growth Director.  This appointment has been approved by our District Executive Committee (DEC).  As you may have heard, Joel placed 2nd in his semi-final round during the International Speech contest in Washington, DC last week.  We are so proud of him and incredibly excited that he has agreed to step up to complete our District trio.

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Joel will need lots of people to serve on his club growth committee.  Please visit the  committees page (http://d68tm.org/district-committees/) to sign up!

Congratulations, Joel!  Welcome aboard the DEC.


Tina Guillot, DTM
District 68 Director

District 68 Toastmasters: (1) How are you? (2) Here’s info on Awards and Committees!

Greetings, fellow Toastmasters!

First and foremost, how are you?  Did you manage to stay dry during the storm?  Please let us know if you encountered problems so we can check on you and help as we are able.  We have heard from Area Directors Tammy Freeman and Nah Senpeng and a few other members that their homes took on water this past weekend.  We ask that you keep them and others who may have been impacted in your thoughts and prayers.  For clubs in Nah’s area (Area 2) and Tammy’s area (Area 8), if you need assistance and are not able to get in touch with them, please feel free to reach out to your Division Director (Division A is Annie Svaty and Division B is Jim Brown).

Here is some important information about District 68 activities:

COMMITTEES:  It’s time to join the choir!  Harmony cannot be achieved with only one voice.  As a member of one of the District 68 committees you will use your talents to help to ensure the strength and success of our district while at the same time further developing your skills in a chosen area.  Our goal is that every Toastmaster in District 68 is an active participant on at list one committee.  Please visit the committees page at http://d68tm.org/district-committees/ to learn more!

AWARDS:  District 68 is now offering various new awards and incentives for program quality, club growth, and member retention.  Please visit the awards page at http://d68tm.org/district-awards/ to learn more!

Please let us know if you have any questions or need further information.
In service to the member,
Tina Guillot, DTM
District 68 Director

Top 5 Reasons for TLIs

Greetings, Club Officers!

Over the past few weeks, we’ve been asked a few times why we set up club officer training in the TLI format.  Were you wondering about that yourself?  Do you think you have enough experience from previous years that you don’t really need training?  Are you wondering why we don’t just have the Area Directors host individual training sessions for each of their clubs?  Here are the top 5 reasons we follow the TLI format as opposed to training within the individual clubs:

It provides educational consistency...  We have gone to great lengths to offer the same quality of training at every session.  If we opted to train clubs individually, there would be absolutely no way to ensure this quality consistently.
It has proven successful…  Toastmasters has been around for over 90 years and we follow the framework that has been successful for much of that.  Why reinvent the wheel?
It makes sense and saves time for everyone… We’re all volunteers.  Unfortunately, serving in leadership, whether as a DEC member or as a club officer, requires sacrifice.  Our team has already sacrificed many hours to drive all over the district hosting four TLIs.  If you missed those, we hope you will make the sacrifice to attend the organized makeup session so we can train as many officers as possible at one time while helping you reach your goals and get quality training.
It gets you outside your club… Too often club members refrain from participating in anything outside their clubs, so they miss out on great opportunities to network and connect, and don’t get the most from their membership.  Whether you’ve been in Toastmasters twenty minutes or twenty years, you’ll benefit from meeting others in the district.
You learn from other leaders…  The breakout sessions at TLIs are a great way to learn how other officers who share your role are handling things in their clubs. Even our more experienced leaders walk away feeling stronger because not only have they been able to share their wisdom, they have also learned fresh ideas and a new perspective from some of our less seasoned members.
We will hold one makeup session in Chalmette on Friday, August 26th at 6:00 p.m.  If you have not attended any of the four main sessions, please plan to join us for this makeup so your club will benefit from having fully trained officers.  Here is the link to register:  https://www.eventbrite.com/e/toastmasters-2016-tli-round-1-makeup-last-training-tickets-26865160418.  (Please note that if for some reason you have not been able to attend any of the four sessions prior and can’t make it to Chalmette, we will do our absolute best to provide you with training, however, there is no guarantee your club will receive credit toward the DCP.)
We wish you much success this Toastmasters year!
Harmoniously yours,

Tina Guillot, DTM
District 68 Director

District 68 Director’s Response to Dues Increase Discussion

Club Growth Director Role

Greetings Fellow Toastmasters,

I regret to inform you all that Cherie Sheriff, our Club Growth Director, has submitted her resignation from the District Trio due to a change in her professional career.  While we are disappointed that we will not be able to have her serving with us on the DEC this year, we are very happy for her and wish her much success in her new role.

It is now my responsibility as the District Director to appoint a replacement for Cherie.   Recommendations for the appointment (in accordance with the requirements described below) should be emailed to me no later than August 11th.

CLUB GROWTH DIRECTOR – To be club growth director, you must have served at least six consecutive months as club president and at least 12 consecutive months as a program quality director, club growth director, division director or area director. Once you serve as club growth director for a full year, you may not be re-elected to the same office for a succeeding term. 

Thank you.
Tina Guillot, DTM
District 68 Director
(504) 338-7927

Harmony in District 68

Greetings, fellow Toastmasters!

I am excited to be serving as your District 68 Director for 2016-2017.  Happy new (Toastmasters) year!  Please click the link to the video below to hear my message about our theme for this year.

We have lots of information to share with you.  Details are provided below:

Alignment/DEC Members:  A copy of the district alignment showing the names of the DEC members has been posted here for your information.  A list of the 2016-2017 DEC members with their contact information will be posted soon.  If you need to contact one of the DEC members prior to that, please let me know and I’ll provide the information you need.  Your Area Directors will be reaching out soon to arrange club visits and assist in other ways.  Be sure to let us all know if your club has a special event coming up.  We’d love to have some of the DEC members join you.

Toastmasters Leadership Institutes (TLIs)

TLIs are the heart of training for current and aspiring club officers.  Sessions have been scheduled in four locations as follows:

  • July 16th – Kenner
  • July 23rd – Baton Rouge
  • July 30th – Monroe
  • August 6th – Beaumont

Invitations for the Kenner training have been distributed.  Baton Rouge, Monroe, and Beaumont invitations will follow closer to the dates.

DEC Assistants/Committees

Do you have the desire to serve the district but have hesitated to commit to a DEC role?  We are currently looking for individuals willing to serve as assistants to the various DEC members (for example, Assistant Area Directors).  This is a great way to learn more and connect with new people.  Please email me if you’d like to help out in that way!  Additionally, be watching for more information about committees we’ll be forming for the District.  The great thing is you can serve in these ways without it impacting your ability to compete.

District Website

We know the website contains a lot of outdated information.  We will be publishing updates very soon.  Special thanks to Sara Johansen for helping with those.

Leadership Central

We encourage all club officers to log in to Club Central through http://www.toastmasters.org/ to ensure that your club and meeting information are up-to-date.  If you don’t remember your password, use the email address on file with Toastmasters to recover your it.  Once logged in, click Leadership Central and then Club Central.  This is where you’ll go to get your club’s membership list, submit membership applications, pay dues, input educational awards, etc.

Membership Incentives

Between August 1st and September 30th, Toastmasters International will be running the “Smedley Award” incentive for membership.  To achieve the award, clubs must add five new members.  Additional details are located on the Toastmasters website here.  In addition to the incentives earned from Toastmasters International, any District 68 clubs that qualify for the Smedley Award will also be entered into a drawing for a Toastmasters $50 Gift Certificate!  We will be drawing for five of these prizes.

Proxy Assignments

As noted in the recent Leader Letter, “Toastmasters clubs hold the most important voting power in the organization. This month, club presidents, secretaries and liaisons will receive proxy information via email for the August 2016 Annual Business Meeting. Make sure your club members review, discuss and decide how their vote should be cast for the international officer and director candidates and Proposals A and B: Amendments to the Bylaws of Toastmasters International.” Mohamad, Cherie, and I will all be attending the International Convention and the business meeting in August.  Please make sure your club officers follow the instructions provided to assign your proxies to one of us.  For information on the candidates, click here.

Finally, my heartiest congratulations to Rebecca Arnett, 2015-2016 District Director, and her amazing team for achieving Distinguished District status this past year.  I am thrilled that we are starting out the year strong and on a positive note! We, the members of the 2016-2017 District 68 Executive Committee look forward to serving you!

Hope to see you soon!
Tina Guillot, DTM
District 68 Director