October 22, 2020
During this calendar year, we have faced challenges none of us could have seen coming. People and businesses from all parts of the world have felt the effects of this global pandemic. Our members are no exception, and as many of you continue to experience the impact of the coronavirus, I want you to know that my thoughts are with you.
It should be no surprise that the pandemic has also impacted our organization. Throughout this past year, Toastmasters International has continually assessed cost-saving options that would protect the organization from further financial strain. Some of these actions include austerity measures at World Headquarters, which consisted of a freeze on all hiring, promotions, and compensation increases, and a pause on print delivery of the Toastmaster magazine. These decisions were difficult, but they were necessary to continue to provide the high standards of service you have come to expect from us.
While change has been plentiful so far in 2020, one thing that will never change is Toastmasters’ commitment to helping our members meet their personal and professional goals. In August, we held our first-ever virtual convention, a truly historic event, and it was offered for free. We continue to create resources to help support members and facilitate online meetings. Please watch my video message regarding the coronavirus and online meetings and share it with your fellow Toastmasters.
Finally, as a token of our appreciation during this difficult time, any Toastmaster who renews their membership for the October renewal period by December 31 will automatically receive a free Pathways path! Please visit your Toastmasters profile, click the “Choose A Path” button, and follow the normal path selection process to redeem your free path before March 31, 2021. For more information about the free path, please see frequently asked questions.
Together, we will continue to learn, grow, and come out of this pandemic stronger than ever.
Richard E. Peck
2020-2021 International President