June 30, 2022
For immediate release

Dear District 53 Toastmasters:

On the eve of my assuming the role of District Director, I am in the midst of functioning as Zoom Master for club officer training…and what a GREAT club officer training it is! Kudos to Chad Babcock, DTM, incoming Division C Director and ongoing District Training Chair. Chad assembled a marvelous staff for tonight’s training, and I am certain that the remaining club officer training sessions are in highly competent hands.

Patti Walter assumes the role of Program Quality Director on July 1. Bettyann Peck assumes the role of Club Growth Director. Joining these two powerhouses are Mohan Padamati as Public Relations Manager, Jessica Ficarra as District Finance Manager, Norm Thibodeau as District Administrative Manager, Aki Ishii as Immediate Past District Director, and Andrew Watt as Webmaster. Amy Chiu has stepped into the role of Sub-District Administrative Manager. She will be keeping the rest of us on our toes.

All of this is intended to serve a very special population: YOU…the Toastmasters of District 53. Without you, and your participation in your clubs, areas, divisions, and district, none of what we do matters. It is truly an honor and a privilege to serve you, our constituency.

John J. Hogan, DTM

District Director, District 53

Club Growth Director

Bettyann Peck, DTM

Bettyann Peck, 2022-2023 CGD for District 53

District Director

John J. Hogan, DTM

Program Quality Director

Patti Walter, DL5, TC3

Patti Walter, Program Quality Director 2022-2023 for District 53

Club Officer Forums

Read about our new offering, the Club Officer Forums, where club officers can meet and connect with other officers in the same role from across the district from 7:00 pm to 8:00 pm. You’ll have a chance to share your best practices, work through your concerns and obstacles, and develop new ideas into action plans. Read more about them here.

Club officer forums do not take the place of formal trainings… see below.

Club Officer Training Begins 1 June 2022

Registration Now Open!

Get at least four club officers trained at a training event between 1 June and 30 August, 2022, as part of your commitment to the Distinguished Club Program (DCP) — and you could earn bragging rights for the 2022-2023 program year!

Volunteer Opportunities

The Volunteer Opportunities page has been updated – 2 June 2022. Please consider applying for the role of Club Mentor for a club in the process of chartering. If you have additional volunteer opportunities to post, let us know!

District Business
Meeting Report

7 May 2022 • 3:00 pm – 5:15 pm
A Summary of the Meeting

Contest Results!

District International Speech Contest

District Table Topics Speech Contest


Recent District News

Click HERE to see All District News


Upcoming District Events


Club Mentoring and Sponsor Training

A club sponsor and club mentor are experienced Toastmaster who work with club leads to get them throughcoaches a club to rebuild membership and restore quality to the club environment. The goal of the club coach program is to coach struggling clubs back to healthy membership and to instruct club members in strategies to encourage continued member enthusiasm and interest in continuing with the Toastmaster Education Program. 

Any member interested in filling the role of club coach in District 53 must meet the following qualifications:

  • Be an active member in good standing (dues paid)
  • Cannot be a member of the club they are coaching
  • Must not be a coach for any other club
  • Must have completed level 2 in any Pathways path or have an Advanced Communicator Bronze (ACB) or Advanced Leadership Bronze (ALB) award
  • Served as a club officer for at least 1 program year
  • Complete this Club Coach Training

For more information, visit Toastmasters International – Club Coach FAQ

April 13
7pm to 8:30 pm


The Club Growth Committee presents the new Shining Star Program.

This incentive program is to help clubs help themselves in developing a sustainable club atmosphere.

How does it work? A club will designate a member to be the Club’s Own Coach (C.O.C). This member will attend a one hour meeting each month from November until June. They will in turn bring the information back to the club.

What will happen at the meetings? Each meeting will be broken into 3 sections. A guest speaker will present on the months theme, followed by some tools and tips finishing up with Q&A and recognition.

How will the incentives work?  There are incentives for the C.O.C.’s, clubs and Area Directors, based on how many tasks the club finishes.

First Monday of every month through June 2022
7pm to 8pm
Deadline for initiatives is June 20th, 2022.


Using Toastmasters Gift Certificates
District 53 celebrates and recognizes member and club achievement with gift certificates to the Toastmasters International store. Stumped by how to make the best use of these valuable rewards when you or your club receives them. How to use TI Gift Certificates…

We’re Ready to Serve Incoming Club Officers
We’ve curated a collection of resources designed to help club officers get off to a running start as they take office. Find links to downloads from the Toastmasters without having to search. Click to view the collection…


Our District Mission…
We build new clubs and support all clubs in achieving excellence.

District Director – Akihiro Ishii, DTM
Program Quality Director – John J. Hogan, DTM
Club Growth Director – Patti Walter, DL4

Public Relations Manager – Bettyann Peck, DTM

Division A Director – Tom Farrelly, CC, ALB
Division B Director – Zachary Fisk, PM2
Division C Director – Molly Hayward, DTM
Division D Director – David Thornton, DTM
Division E Director – Beth VanKempen, ACB, ALB


Coronavirus Update – Revised November 21, 2021 – Review New Information

As vaccinations proceed apace across New York State, Connecticut, and Massachusetts, there is hope for a return to in-person meetings in the future. Public health agencies and officials are starting to loosen mask restrictions and travel limits, and more facilities are opening to semi public meetings.

Since each Toastmasters club is an independent entity, each club may decide to return to in-person meetings by a majority vote at a regularly scheduled and announced business meeting. The District suggests that a committee of club members develop a procedure that meets local public health guidelines and satisfies any requirements imposed by the host venue. Please include processes for members and guests to attend virtually wherever possible in your club guidelines. Know also that your club and its officers have insurance to protect you against physical damage to your host facilities, but that this protection may not extend to claims arising from a member or guest’s health care.

District 53 Toastmasters has a more complex route back to in-person meetings than individual clubs. Many of our historic venues for TLIs, Club Officer Training, and District meetings are still closed to outsiders, and are choosing to remain so until later this year.

For a complete update with important new information, go to the District 53 Coronavirus Update.