Melissa McGavick, DTM

Melissa McGavick, DTM

Candidate's Office: Second Vice President

Region Number: 6

Toastmasters member since: 2004

Education: BA Communication and Media Studies, Pennsylvania State University

Employer and/or position: Self-employed at McGavick Interactive Training: Professional Development Training

Served as District Director of District number: 13

Term of service: 2014 - 2015

In term as District Director, District achieved: Select Distinguished

Website: TBD

Toastmasters offices held and terms of service (international-, region-, and District-level):

  • 2012-2013 Lt. Governor Marketing
  • 2013-2014 Lt. Governor Education and Training
  • 2014-2015 District Governor
  • 2016-2016 Training & Development Advisory Committee Member
  • 2017-2018 Region Advisor Region 7
  • 2018-2019 Region Advisor Region 6
  • 2020-2022 International Director Region 6

Toastmasters honors and recognition (international- and District-level):

  • 2012-2013 Excellence in Marketing Award
  • 2013-2014 Excellence in Education and Training Award
  • 2014-2015 Select Distinguished District
  • 2015-2015 Presented at District Leader Training: Meet the Experts session
  • 2019-2019 Presidential Citation
  • 2020-2021 Resilience Award

Relevant work experience and how it relates to Toastmasters and your role as a Board Member:

With more than 30 years of experience in sales, executive recruiting, professional speaking, training, coaching and team development. Selling to C-Suite clients, coaching a diverse client portfolio, and serving on nonprofit boards has honed my ability to think beyond today and to develop strategies that propel an organization forward.

What experience do you have in strategic planning?

As President of the Board of Directors of a non-profit organization I worked to create 3- and 5-year strategic plans and supporting budgets. This required collaboration with all of the organization's subcommittees to ensure the plan prepared the organization for our envisioned future. Working to reach consensus of the membership was crucial for adoption and implementation of the plan. As Co-Director in another non-profit, I set targets and developed plans fundraise for a Cancer Center's Patient Assistance Fund.

While serving as an International Director (2020-2022) on the Toastmasters Board, I participated exercises used by the Strategic Planning Committee to create the current strategic plan. My committee work included the District Leader Roles and Responsibilities Committee, Policy Review Committee, Incentives Committee and Listening Groups.

What experience do you have in the area of finance?

As a member of the Toastmasters Board, I reviewed monthly financial reports, and reviewed and approved the Toastmasters International Annual budget.

As President of the Board of one non-profit I had to ensure the budget was in alignment with the strategic plan in order to implement all programs and initiatives. I have worked with committees to adjust budgets where needed and allocate funds for areas that support the mission of the organization and provide a greater benefit to members. As Co-Director of a second nonprofit I acquired sponsorship from both private and corporate donors; working with my team to lower the cost of activities to be able to provide more funds for patient assistance.

What experience do you have in developing policies?

Outside of Toastmasters, I have experience working on the Bylaws and Policies committee of a nonprofit board reviewing and updating board policy and procedure to better serve the current membership. I also have work experience, writing policy and procedures to ensure multi-state regulatory compliance.

While serving on the Toastmasters International Board, I reviewed, deliberated and approved policies presented by board committees in addition to serving on the Policy Review Committee, Incentive Committee and the District Leadership Roles and Responsibilities Committee.

What lessons did you learn from previous leadership positions?

Listen, listen, listen. Surround yourself with people who are better than you. Prepare, equip and provide opportunities for others to excel; then, get out of their way. Involve others in decisions; when they own part of the decision, they are more likely to make things happen. Ask for help when you need it. Deal with issues quickly; don't let things fester. Always do what is right. Be willing to do what is hard. Give away the credit; take the blame. The best legacy I can leave, is the seed of success in others I've helped along the way.

What experience and key strengths would you bring to the Board of Directors?

I'll bring my ability to break down complex thoughts and processes making them simple to understand and gain buy-in from parties in all levels. Clearly communicating with people on all levels of an organization has served me well in the boards I've already served and will be an asset to the Toastmasters International Executive Committee. For the role of an International Officer, I bring experience as a fiduciary along with strategic thinking and budgeting to serve our members.

Serving as both an International Director and Region Advisor provides me with insight to the differences and similarities within our districts and regions.

Why do you want to serve as an International Officer/Director?

Toastmasters' changes lives. Think of how many times individuals come into our organization with a small goal, and through utilizing the Toastmasters education program, blossom into a more confident and effective version of themselves. That person becomes a catalyst for changed in the community around them. Our world needs more leaders who subscribe to the Toastmaster core values of integrity, respect, service and excellence.

As we approach our 100th anniversary, I believe the foundation set by the leaders who have come before gives us a sturdy place to build our envisioned future. As we face the challenge of emerging from a global crisis, we need leaders who are dedicated to seeing our strategic plan through; who will actively search for creative approaches and innovative solutions, while staying committed to what makes our organization remarkable.

It would be an honor to contribute my experience, knowledge, time and talents to the Executive Committee as an International Officer.

What volunteer experience do you have outside of Toastmasters?

  • Board of Directors for the Pittsburgh Chapter of the National Speakers Association
  • President of the Board of Directors for Women's Business Network (WBN)
  • Co-Director of Women Think P.I.N.K. a nonprofit organization that raises funds for the Hillman Cancer Center Patient Assistance Fund
  • Director for the Downtown Women's Club Pittsburgh Chapter (DWC)
  • Chairperson for Cranberry Women's Business Network Chapter
  • President of Women Entrepreneurs in Business (WEB)

While serving on the board of WBN I chaired several committees including:

  • Membership Growth and Retention
  • Chapter Expansion
  • Nominations
  • Strategic Planning and Budgeting
  • Bylaws and Policies
  • Education
  • Speakers Bureau
  • Technology Committees

As a Deacon at my church for over 7 years, I led a team of 70+ volunteers in the First Impressions Ministry. Several times I've taught job skills in a 16-session program for people in “at risk” populations.

Have you worked with other Boards of Directors outside of Toastmasters? If so, describe your experience.

The Women's Business Network (WBN) is an organization that supports the growth of women business owners and professionals through its network of chapters. I served a term as President of the Board and a term as Vice President of the board. During the years I was on the board, I chaired several committees including: Membership Growth and Retention, Chapter Expansion, Nominations, Strategic Planning and Budgeting, Bylaws and Policies, Education, Executive Search, Speakers Bureau and Technology Committees. During the years I served on the board, WBN increased both chapters and membership. We moved from a paper heavy organization to a streamlined digital platform and implemented self-pay for members. To serve the chapters and members more effectively, we added chapter leader education programs and additional member events. We also hired a new Executive Director during my tenure.

For Women Think P.I.N.K., a nonprofit organization that raises funds for the Hillman Cancer Center Patient Assistance Fund I was Co-Director of the board.

During my time on the Board of Directors for the Pittsburgh Chapter of the National Speakers Association I served as the Membership Committee Chair. Prior to serving on the NSA-Pittsburgh board, I was a member of the Membership Committee.

For the Downtown Women's Club Pittsburgh Chapter (DWC) I was Director and for Women Entrepreneurs in Business (WEB) I was President. Prior to serving on the board, I was part of the local chapter leadership team as the Chairperson for Cranberry Women's Business Network Chapter.

In your opinion, what are Toastmasters International’s major objectives and how would you work to achieve them?

The major objectives of Toastmasters International are:

  • Club Excellence
  • Member Achievement
  • Awareness and Engagement
  • Operational Effectiveness

The member's club experience has to be consistently excellent “as promised,” no matter where in the world they meet. Our members should be able to use the Pathways Program to consistently achieve their personal and professional goals. Brand presence in the marketplace should create top-of-mind awareness of the Toastmasters Brand as the first-choice for communication and leadership skills development in new and emerging markets as well as well-developed markets through use of all forms of media. The tools and processes used to serve members, clubs and districts should enhance the experience by being seamlessly integrated and intuitive.

As an International Officer, I will actively seek out and listen to member's ideas, watch for market opportunities, and search for the best solutions to be able to bring fresh and innovative ideas to the table. I look forward to the opportunity to collaborate with fellow Executive Committee and the Board Members to create strategies to support the Toastmasters Mission.

Additional information about candidate:

Outside of Toastmasters, I enjoy photography, traveling and most of all, traveling to spending time with family. My biggest supporter and my rock is my husband, Kevin.

Growing up, my family taught me:

  • the value of thinking ahead, hard work and commitment, to always be looking for ways to improve a process or result
  • remember that good things take time to grow, so have patience
  • know that there is joy in serving and taking care of your neighbor
  • when you accomplish something that you've worked hard to achieve, celebrate, be grateful and remember where you started