Mark Rachels Has a “Defining Moment”

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Defining moments in your Toastmasters journey happen rarely, and you should never let them pass you by. I had one such moment last week.

As Area 64 Governor, I kept promoting the value of effective communications and the District Conference every chance that I got. Then last week I received an email from the Fall 2012 Conference Chair that I had won the Area Governors’ contest to have dinner with International President John Lau and our leadership team. I was very excited and at the same time, thinking all this would be is another CIO-type event. I was so wrong in thinking that John Lau was like all the other executive leaders whom I have been in contact with.

Our dinner was at Mac’s in Colleyville. Also attending were District Governor Bonne Stroman, Lt Governor Education and Training Dean Lampman and his wife Michelle, Lt Governor Marketing Marylee Mims, Public Relations Officer Gary Chiu, and Treasurer and Past District Governor Diana Patton. As soon as he and his lovely wife walked in and shook my hand, with eye contact and sincerity in body language, I knew this was one of the defining moments in my Toastmasters journey.

I found out firsthand that John Lau is a true Toastmasters visionary leader, believes in the Toastmasters journey and has the gift to inspire others. He takes the time to help the individual to succeed in life and Toastmasters. I witnessed firsthand how John Lau convinced  Dean Lampman’s wife Michelle to be at the events on Saturday; he gave Dean and his wife a defining moment. What I walked away with from Thursday’s dinner was that when you serve as a district officer, focus on your goals and your members. It only lasts a year and you have the rest of your life to reflect on one of the most fantastic times of your Toastmasters journey.

What I took away from my defining moment was, establish your goals and believe in your heart that you will be successful. This will establish the mindset to make your dreams happen.

The most important thing I gained from the conference and the dinner is that Toastmasters is truly focused on the individual member’s success. Not once did I hear anything at dinner about John Lau’s success.

I would like to thank the outstanding  members of Area 64. By attending the Fall Conference you made it possible.

Mark Rachels, ACG, CL
Area 64 Governor