By PRM Brian Arthur Tallador, CC/ALB
Chiang Mai Toastmasters Club

Every organization has a goal. Without it is like sailing in the ocean and leaving your fate to the winds on where it will bring you. Goals keep us driven and excited.

Toastmaster clubs around the world has the goal to provide a supportive and positive learning experience in which members are empowered to develop communication and leadership skills, resulting in greater self-confidence and personal growth. Having that in mind, districts award clubs which meet the goals in the Distinguished Club Program (DCP). These DCP goals help clubs provide their members with a consistently high-quality experience. In turn, Toastmasters International (TI) rewards the districts that meet TI’s goals in growth and educational achievement in the form of the Distinguished District Program.

In the past, there were only three awards in the Distinguished District Program. The Distinguished District, the Select Distinguished District, and the President’s Distinguished District. The awards are based on membership growth, club growth, and clubs that achieved distinguished awards. To make these awards attainable, TI lowered the requirements for each, and added a new one for those districts who can achieve beyond excellence.

That’s how the Smedley Distinguished District Award was born. Districts need eight-percent net membership payments growth, eight percent net club growth and the clubs in the district must be at least Distinguished clubs equal to at least 55 percent of the district’s club base.

District 97 was awarded Smedley Distinguished District, which means it has grown its membership, has increased the number of clubs, and these clubs are proven to provide their members with a consistently high-quality experience.

How have you as a member contributed to this award? If you promoted Toastmasters to your friends, paid your dues on time, and convinced guests to sign-up, then these all contribute to membership payment growth and club growth. Have you delivered speeches? Have you done meeting roles? These too contribute DCP points to your club.

Your club officers have bigger responsibilities as they need to be trained and do administration duties for your club to earn more DCP points. So, please support them by doing your share, and doing it well.

More clubs in the district mean more chances for people to join a Toastmasters club. More membership means more diversity, style, and expertise for members to experience that could contribute to their growth. And more Distinguished clubs mean members are getting the most of their membership to grow as an effective leader and communicator.

Congratulations to all Toastmasters in District 97 especially to the leaders who pushed and worked hard to make this happen!

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