Lesley E. Storkey
Candidate's Office: International Director
Region Number: 12
Toastmasters member since: 1990
Education: Bachelor of Veterinary Science BVSc
Employer and/or position: Self-employed, Storkeys' Team
Served as district governor of district number: 69
Term of service: 2008 - 2009
In term as district governor, district achieved: Not Distinguished
Toastmasters offices held and terms of service (international and regional level):
- 2019 Online Training Committee Chair
- 2008-2009 District Governor
- 2007-2008 Lieutenant Governor Education & Training
- 2006-2007 Lieutenant Governor Marketing
Toastmasters honors and recognition (international level):
- 2007-2008 Excellence in Education & Training
- 1990-1997 DTM
Relevant work experience and how it relates to Toastmasters and your role as a Board member:
As a veterinarian in my own practice, I needed to make critical business decisions, lead a team and focus on customer care. As a project manager in the area of real estate projects, I utilized the skills of planning, finance, negotiation and communication across all stratas of the community from developer and builder to the ultimate owners. In Storkeys' Team, we focused on executive coaching and facilitation in the fields of communication, team structure, resolution of conflict and meeting goals.
What experience do you have in strategic planning?
As a project manager on multi-million dollar projects for a national real estate franchise, my role encompassed visualization, concept discussions, acquisition of property, appointment of key players, marketing, sales and the ultimate completion of the project. This was an exercise in effective strategic planning.
What experience do you have in the area of finance?
My involvement in project management and marketing in the real estate arena included setting of projects and management and delivery of multi-million dollar budgets. The success of this involvement ensured a strong return on investment. As a small business owner, I held the responsibility for government compliance and regulations and for budgetary control.
What experience do you have in developing policies?
As State President of Nursing Mothers' Association of Australia, I was a key participant in developing policies which managed strategic liaisons and operating principles between the end users (mothers and infants), health care professionals, hospitals and government health departments. As Foundation President of the Whitsunday Intimate Theatre Society, an incorporated body, our team wrote the constitution (mindful of the strict legal guidelines) establishing directives and determining policies which would govern the organization in the achievement of its stated goals.
What lessons did you learn from previous leadership positions?
I have learnt many lessons and continue to learn: listening skills, to listen more and talk less; to understand the importance of a shared vision; to practise clear communication skills; to utilize the skills of others through delegation; to utilize best practices from both inside and outside the specific organization; and to know that leaders, after open communication and collaboration, need to be decisive.
What experience and key strengths would you bring to the Board of Directors?
Thirty years of Toastmasters membership, visiting districts and presenting around the world have given me an invaluable insight into our global organization. This knowledge has been enhanced by my careers in project management, real estate and veterinary practice giving me an appreciation of commercial practice with regard to volunteer organizations.
Why do you want to serve as an international officer/director?
"Knowledge is only valuable if you share it." My experience of living in different cultures and a diverse involvement, career-wise, over the years, would enable me to utilize this knowledge for the benefit of our organization and its members.
What volunteer experience do you have outside of Toastmasters?
Cub leader (Scouting Association) in Australia and England; counsellor and State President of the Nursing Mothers' Association of Australia; Foundation President of the Whitsunday Intimate Theatre Society; foundation member of Whitsunday Chamber of Commerce; member of Whitsunday Tourism association.
Have you worked with other Boards of Directors outside of Toastmasters? If so, describe your experience.
As a member of the State Board of Nursing Mothers' Association of Australia, I found this to be a challenging, stimulating and (sometimes) rewarding experience. My tenure covered a challenging and confronting era when we worked within two major areas, that of public acceptance of the breastfeeding mother; and also the link between the general public, hospitals, healthcare and government practices and policies. Heading the Board of an amateur theatre group gave the experience of working with a diverse, and often outspoken, group of individuals.
In your opinion, what are Toastmasters International’s major objectives and how would you work to achieve them?
Growth is critical however I believe this should be re-defined as expansion - expansion not only of the network of clubs, districts and the global expansion, but matched with the global expansion of services and delivery mechanisms. For example, call centers and distribution warehouses strategically located in Asia, Europe and Oceania. If the Board is serious about global recognition and expansion, then the members (of the Board) need to formulate and support this mechanism. As a global organization our leaders need to appreciate that, due to diverse cultures, behaviors and values, "one size does not fit all". Our Strategic Plan needs to address this and elucidate the varying motivations throughout our current and future membership.
Additional information about candidate:
I have had the privilege of serving as the inaugural Chair of the Online Training Committee (a global pilot study through my home district for the potential incorporation of online training of club leaders via the Zoom platform). Since this was a new initiative, the role required visionary direction, critical thinking and decisive guidelines. I continue to be involved in mentoring Toastmasters, particularly current and potential leaders and gain much satisfaction in seeing the growth in their leadership journeys.