Toastmasters offices held and terms of service (international and regional level):
- 2015-2016 District Director
- 2014-2015 Lieutenant Governor Education & Training
- 2013-2014 Lieutenant Governor Marketing
- 2010-2011 Eastern Division Governor
- 2009-2010 Area 14 Governor
Toastmasters honors and recognition (international level):
- 2011-2012 Distinguished Toastmaster
- 2009-2010 Area Governor of the Year (Division E)
- 2008-2009 Toastmaster of the Year (Area Level) 2008-2009
Relevant work experience and how it relates to Toastmasters and your role as a Board member:
I have 18 years of experience working in a financial organization where I have served as project manager, expert on subject matter for large projects and authored documents for various applications. I have reviewed policies, designed applications, and provided the necessary support and feedback required for implementation. I have been a Toastmaster for the past 10 years in a financial organization that has supported 24 company clubs at various locations around the world. Being part of a leadership team, I assisted in forming and leading the Toastmasters Executive Committee resulting in the creation of strategic initiatives to enhance the value of Toastmasters to the organization and to the employees. This experience, as well as having a corporate background, has broadened my global understanding of Toastmasters and challenges with membership for corporate and open clubs. Our initiative also resulted in the creation of a Toastmasters annual award similar to the Toastmaster of the Year that elevates involvement in our company and recognizes the contributions of our members. I have had the privilege to interact with those outside my department. For example, I worked closely Human Resources to develop a Toastmasters membership reimbursement policy. I have taken my leadership skills into the community to serve on a non-profit board and support local charities.
What experience do you have in strategic planning?
I supported a multi-year transition to replace old servers at work. This involved prioritization, impact to other areas, and constant communication with other Business Lines. I also worked on a multi-year effort to look at reporting of key elements to support various business groups based on who is most impacted and in the areas of content. I was a subject matter expert in the multi-year design and concept for a reporting solution for a large business line.
What experience do you have in the area of finance?
I have 18 years of experience working for a financial company. During this time, I have worked with many areas of the company including Risk Management, Policy and Control Management, Technology, Information Security, and Wealth Management. I worked as a lead for financial reporting for a European country. I participated in a quarterly review of stability in our company providing monthly and ongoing reporting of potential impacts to the company.
What experience do you have in developing policies?
Working on the ground floor developing policies throughout my career, I provided critical input on proposed policies internally to development areas and on several corporate policies based on content and workflow. This included analysis of impact and timeline of implementation.
What lessons did you learn from previous leadership positions?
One lesson learned from being in leadership is that as an individual contributor on projects, I can only do so much. Through leadership positions at work and in Toastmasters, I have learned to work in, create, and lead teams to accomplish efforts beyond what I can do personally. Another lesson learned is the importance of having effective communication at all levels of an organization or company resulting in greater team input and inclusiveness for higher levels of achievement.
What experience and key strengths would you bring to the Board of Directors?
I embrace change with positive energy, excitement, and enthusiasm. I have worked in large and small groups and can take an analytical view of impact. Having served in both leadership roles and in team member capacities, has enabled me to develop the unique skill sets of a “big picture” visionary with attention to detail.
Why do you want to serve as an international officer/director?
In the 10 years as a Toastmaster, I have gained so much in developing communication and leadership skills. I want to give back by paying it forward so other Toastmasters around the world can get the same benefits of Toastmasters. I also want to build upon what our past International officers and directors have done to provide a healthy organization for our members around the world for years to come.
What volunteer experience do you have outside of Toastmasters?
Outside of Toastmasters, my volunteer experiences include packing food for Feed My Starving Children and Second Harvest Heartland, helping to raise money by leading events for United Way, participating in the Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity to help with light repair, painting, and gardening for those in need. I have also volunteered at the Minnesota Zoo to share information with zoo visitors about the animals exhibited, conservation, species in Minnesota and those around the world that need our help.
Have you worked with other Boards of Directors outside of Toastmasters?
Over the past year, I have served on a non-profit board for the Promenade of Parkers Lake Condominium Association in my local city. I currently serve on the board as the Treasurer where I review our monthly financial reports which include: operating assets, reserve assets, operating liabilities, and equities; 30-year reserve expenditures and cash flow schedule; and yearly operating budgets. Every 30 days I also review completed, in-process and future planned projects, homeowner correspondence, and help determine a course of action on delinquent accounts. I have interacted with other board members to agree on a plan.
In your opinion, what are Toastmasters International’s major objectives and how would you work to achieve them?
One major objective is the roll out of Pathways to all clubs around the world. As a board member, I would work to review the roll out progress and provide input as a board member when needed. Having trained leaders across the organization through ambassadors is critical in the roll out of pathways. As our organization grows, so must the infrastructure in technology to support the increasing membership growth. With my 22 years in Information Technology with a software development background, I will be a great asset on the board. Getting manuals out to our members in various languages around the world is a key objective. By using technology, we could continue to distribute materials in more effective ways online. I feel the key to success for any major objective, is starting with the individual members.
Additional information about candidate:
Other honors: Presidents Distinguished Club Award [Westside Chats, for term as President] (2011-2012), U.S. Bank Toastmaster of the Year Award (2012), District 6 Empowerment Award Recipient (2013), District 6 Reach Out and Share Energy (ROSE) Award Recipient (2012), District 6 Diamond Award Recipient (2011), Toastmaster of the Year [Money Talks Toastmasters] (2008-2009). I have a strong commitment to Toastmasters and have been dedicated to each role that I have performed. I am very excited to begin this next chapter in my Toastmasters journey and to support Toastmasters members around the world along the way!