Rodney Denno

Hello Fellow Toastmasters! 

Toastmasters thrives today because of the many volunteers that have given back!
By doing so they have helped build and strengthen an organization that offers many opportunities for hundreds of thousands of people around the world to learn and grow as leaders and communicators.
Since 2006 I’ve spent a lot of time in the Toastmasters Learning Laboratory – doing, thinking, discussing, and writing about whatever aspect of Toastmasters, 
I was involved in at the time.

I hope what you find here helps you on your Toastmasters journey.

– Rodney G. Denno, DTM
Vancouver, British Columbia, CANADA

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Fair and fun contest book cover

For Club, Area, Division and District Contests

Being a Contest Chair is challenging and rewarding – stretching both your leadership and communication skills.

Contestants have spent many hours crafting their speeches or developing their impromptu speaking skills. As Contest Chair you – and your team – can provide a contest environment that is enjoyable for the competitors and the audience.

This PDF has all the resources you will need to build a team and create fair, fun, and well run contests.

All the best as Contest Chair and in your Toastmaster journey!

Contest Chair – Checklists

The checklist’s conform to the Toastmasters International Contest Chair checklist (in the Speech Contest Rulebook).
These are however a lot more detailed and include practical suggestions and details that come from chairing many contests.  I created these checklists to help you plan the contest and manage the myriad of details that go into ensuring a fair, fun and well run contest.

International Speech
Speech Evaluation
Table Topics Speech
Humorous Speech
Tall Tales Speech
Contest Chair – Scripts

These script’s were crafted – over time – by discussing and testing various ways to effectively deliver fair, fun, and well-run contests. Each script has the – time tested – words and actions you will need to say and do from the moment you open the contest until your final thank you’s as you close the contest.

International Speech
Speech Evaluation
Table Topics Speech
Humorous Speech
Tall Tales Speech
Chief Judge – Checklist

The Chief Judge and team are essential to ensuring fair judging and accurate tabulation and reporting of the contest results. This checklist conforms to the Toastmasters International Chief Judge checklist (in the Speech Contest Rulebook) but includes a lot more detail not in the Rulebook.

How to Conduct Quality Speech Contests – Training
Created with fellow Toastmaster Blair Montgomery, DTM. This presentation can be used to train Contest Chairs, Cheif Judges and other contest officials.
speech evaluation contest cover

For Individual Members

The short answer – Be the best!

A somewhat longer answer – “Be the best! – on that day – for that speech – as determined by the judges in that audience – out of all the speech evaluators at that competition”.

If you can do that four times (Club, Area, Division, District) you earn the right to call yourself the District Speech Evaluation Champion for that year. No small feat!

This eBook will help you prepare to – Be at your best!

club strength cover

For Strengthening Clubs

Think back to the first club you joined. You probably joined because it felt like the ‘right fit’.

That feeling is what I call Club Strength. When Club Strength is high it’s because members are contributing to the production of dynamic, informative and entertaining meetings – that keep members engaged and wanting more.

This guide looks at how to build – or rebuild – Club Strength by raising membership levels AND ensuring that each members overall club experience is valuable. The miniMentor program – introduced here – is a way of assisting clubs in rebuilding Club Strength when a Club Coach is not available.

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For District Level Club Officer Training

Club Officers in remote clubs are sometimes unable to attend training because of the significant time, cost and in some cases weather danger associated with traveling to in-person training.

In 2009 a group of us in District 21 (British Columbia, Canada) decided to increase the number of club officers receiving training – by providing an online training option. Since 2009 a few hundred club officers have been trained – that would otherwise have not received training.

NOTE: Prior to each training period the District has asked for – and received – permission from the TI Board to have this online training count towards the club’s DCP points.

A step-by-step guide that contains all the information needed to set up and deliver online club officer training.

large events that wow cover

For Areas, Division and District Level Promotional Events

Simply put – WOW events are intended to get attendees to say “WOW! I didn’t realize there was so much to Toastmasters!”

Over the past few years a number of us in District 21 (British Columbia, Canada) created and delivered large WOW events to a couple of hundred people at a time. Typically a single WOW event helps a couple of dozen clubs build membership and club strength – and generally create a greater awareness of Toastmasters.

how to get sold out cover

For Promoting District Conferences

Experiencing a SOLD OUT conference is energizing for the attendees – and gratifying for the team of people it took to create and deliver it! Over the past few years I’ve helped a number of conference teams create and deliver SOLD OUT conferences. This eBook contains all the plans and email content that we created to successfully promote a recent District 21 Fall Conference – that reached SOLD OUT, and even had a waiting list!