Division D Contest Dates!

Fellow Toastmasters,

The Division D contest will be on Saturday, March 16th at 10:00 am at the Westfield Athenaeum in Westfield, MA.  I apologize for the delay in sending this out.  I didn’t want to announce anything before securing a venue.

The Athenaeum is the same venue as the Area 43 and 44 contests.  It opens at 9:00.  Briefings for the contestants and judges begin at 9:30.

Because we only have 4 areas, both the first and second place winners are invited to participate in the Division D contest.  Only one person per category will be advancing to the district contest.

In the next week or so, I will be sending out more information.  In the meantime if you are a contestant, please respond to this email to let me know you received it.

Sincerely,
Mark Wing
Division D Director 2023-2024

Division A Contest Results

Fellow Toastmasters —

I’m pleased to report the results of the Division A Contest, held 24 February 2024:

Evaluation

  • 1st Jeffrey Bradbury
  • 2nd Christina LaPerle
  • 3rd Andrew Amico

International

  • 1st Jeffrey Bradbury
  • 2nd Sandy Weiner
  • 3rd Oluwafemi Omoyeni

Catch the gallery below of photographs from the Division Contest!

First place winner Jeffrey Bradbury will now advance to the District Contests on May 10 (Evaluation) and May 11 (International) at the District Conference in Southbury, Connecticut. Sign up to attend the conference now and cheer him on, and catch all the great workshops, and our keynote speaker Sheryl Roush!

A reminder that the Winter Club Officer Training season closes this week, on 29 February 2024. While District 53 has held all of its events for this season, you can select one of the events on the District 53 Training website that is hosted by another District, from New York to Hawaii.

March 31, 2024 is the end of the spring dues period, and you’ll need to make sure that all the members of your club have paid their dues to Toastmasters International — or that they’ve paid your club treasurer, and your treasurer has paid!

Please make plans for your Area Director to visit, as well! Their visits and reports should be complete by May 31, 2024!

Yours in Toastmasters service,
Stephanie Anne Roy
Division A Director 2023-2024

Areas 11 – 12 – 13 -14 Contest Results

Four Areas of Division A held their contests at Bethel Public Library on 20 January 2024. The speech contests held were the Evaluation Speech Contest first, followed by the International Speech contest which culminates in the World Championship of Public Speaking® at the Toastmasters International Convention held each August. Area Directors and District Director Patti Walter were in attendance.

Congratulations to all these members who stepped out if their comfort zone and participated in the Rea 11 through 14 Evaluation and International Contests.

Moving on are:

Area 11

  • Andrew Amico – Evaluation
  • Sandy Weiner – International

Area 12

  • Jeff Bradbury – Evaluation and International

Area 13

  • Oscar Romero – Evaluation
  • Scott Mason – International

Area 14

  • Christina LaPerle- Evaluation
  • Oluwafemi Omoyeni – International

Thanks to all our functionaries, contestants and guest for making this such a great afternoon. And special thanks to our Contest Toastmaster Debbie Froehlich.

Mark your calendars for February 24 when these contests advance to the next level, at the Division A speech contests (more details here). Please volunteer for a role and contact divadir@d53tm.org to offer your assistance as a contest judge, functionary or audience member!

Division C Contest Date announced

Division C Director Selina Tourjee and the Area Directors of Division C are pleased to announce that the Division C contests will be held on Saturday 9 March 2024, at Manchester Church of Christ in Manchester, Connecticut. Briefings will begin at 8:40 am and the contests will start at 9:00 am.

Please follow this link to find additional information as it becomes available.

Workshop for Judges

Fellow Toastmasters,

To assist you in running contests, we’ll be hosting a new workshop, When You Are the Judge, on 13 November 2023 from 7 pm to 8:00 pm (repeating on January 9, 2024). Please read about and join us!

As a reminder,

  • Club Contests must end by December 10, 2023. They can be held online, in-person, or in a hybrid format, but they must follow the 2023-2024 Speech Contest Rulebook.
  • Area Contests will take place in-person between December 11, 2023 and February 10, 2024. Locations will be listed below. (results here)
  • Division Contests will take place in-person between February 11, 2024 and March 31, 2024. Locations will be listed below. (results here)
  • The District Contests will take place in-person at the District Conference!

There are a number of existing resources to assist you in the process of running contests:

You can always reach me at DCJ@d53tm.org with any questions or concerns, and I’ll happily answer.

Yours in Toastmasters service,
Beth Van Kempen
District 53 Chief Judge, 2023-2024

Clarification of Contest Rules for Areas and Divisions

District 53 is pleased to announce that the particular rules of the Contest season have been selected:

  1. Contests at the Area, Division, and District levels will be in-person.
  2. No hybrid or online contests will be held this year.
  3. Clubs are responsible for choosing their format for the contest, whether online, hybrid, or in-person.
  4. Contests beyond the club level will be held in-person. Both contestants and officials will be expected to be present at the contest’s physical location.

In Areas with Four or Fewer Clubs —

  • Two contestants from each club contest may advance to the Area contest. These will be the winner and the first runner-up (or the second runner-up, or the third runner-up) in areas with four (4) or fewer clubs to advance to Area contests.

Similarly, in Divisions with Four or Fewer Areas —

  • the top two finishers (or the first two available contestants who competed without disqualification) shall move on from from Area to Division (rule 3.B in the rulebook).
  • In the event that the first place or second place finisher is unavailable to compete, the next available contestant (who was not disqualified on time) may advance to the Division contest..

As a reminder, clubs may send a contestant to the Area contests without holding a contest (and in Areas with four or fewer clubs, they may send two contestants to each contest). However, the rules specify that if the club decides to hold a speech contest, that contest must obey the Toastmasters Contest Rulebook for the current season.

This includes Pathways minimum requirements for some speech contests — please make sure your contestants meet all requirements before advancing them to the Area level, because if a disqualification based on eligibility is discovered at a later date, it is retroactive to all other contests in the same cycle.

Announcing Contest Season!

Mark your calendars because the Club Contest season is just around the corner, starting from October 15, 2023, and running through to December 10, 2023. This is your chance to showcase your communication and leadership skills on a club level. Our two contests this year are the International Speech Contest culminating at the World Championships of Public Speaking at the annual Toastmasters International Convention in August 2024; and the Evaluation Contest, culminating at our own District 53 stage.

Here are some important dates to keep in mind:

  • Club Contests 🏆 (October 15, 2023 – December 10, 2023): Clubs will kick off the contest season, providing members with a platform to shine and compete.
  • Area Contests 🌐 (December 11, 2023 – February 10, 2024): Winners from the club level will move on to compete at the area level, taking their speeches to a broader audience.
  • Division Contests 🌟 (February 11, 2024 – March 31, 2024): The competition will intensify as the best from the areas face off. It’s all about leveling up!
  • District Contests 🌍 (Date to be determined): The ultimate stage, where champions from each division will compete. Stay tuned for the date announcement, tentatively targeting the 3rd weekend in April!

You can follow the development of the contest season by bookmarking the Contest Schedule Page — and if you’d like to list your own club’s contest dates, please contact our webmaster!

We’ve adjusted the contest calendar to ensure that Division Contests are wrapped up before April 1st, avoiding any conflicts with dues renewals.

The Club Contest format is entirely up to each club’s discretion. You can choose to hold your contests online, in-person, or even opt for a hybrid format. Flexibility is key, so adapt to what works best for your club.

Please note that all Area, Division, and District Speech Contests will be held in-person.

Get ready to embark on this thrilling journey of self-improvement, competition, and growth. Stay tuned for more details and instructions on how to participate in these contests. 

Results of the District 53 Contests 2023

District Program Quality Director Patti Walter is pleased to publish the results of the District 53 Contests for the 2022-2023 program year, held on May 6, 2023.

International

The International Speech Contest was held at 7:45 pm on 6 May 2023 at the Springfield Sheraton Monarch Place hotel during the District 53 Annual conference. Chad Babcock served as Contest Toastmaster and Mark Wing served as Chief Judge.

The placed winners were:

  • 1. Michael Whitehouse
  • 2. Donna Plen
  • 3. Craig Moore

Tall Tales Contest

The Tall Tales Contest was held at 10:45 am on 6 May 2023 at the Springfield Sheraton Monarch Place hotel during the District 53 Annual Conference. Rick May served as Contest Toastmaster and Mark Wing served as Chief Judge.

The placed winners were:

  • 1. Christine Austin
  • 2. Poonam Hassija
  • 3. Kevin Haven

Our thanks go out to all the contestants, timers, ballot counters, chief judges, voting judges, tie breaking judges, contest chairs, and contest Toastmasters, as well as to the audiences, at club, Area, Division and District levels, who made our hybrid program so successful this year.