People Making History

August 2019

Denver -Colorado


Voting for Excellence!

I was priviledged to also be on the campaign trail. I joined the most amazing team! Service was redefined for me as I saw and interacted with the Aletta ID Dream Team. We all wore the SA scarf and we all carried this big big Dream. One of our own would represent District 74 at probably the highest level in Toastmasters. History would be made.

DTM Aletta Rochat was heading towards the Toastmasters International Boardroom!

The Candidate’s corner was buzzing with life. Leaders were seeking to appoint leaders….

Here is what I learnt:

“Communication is Leadership and Leadership Excellence is Communication Excellence.”

Dorothy Chanakira DTM

I will highlight my take-aways in 10 points:

  1. Debriefing : A series of detailed debriefs was given by DTM Aletta to ensure the team was on one page. We knew what the mission was and how we would execute.
  2. Schedule : Appointments were scheduled for DTM Aletta with District leaders and members . I learnt that keeping schedules and time management was vital.
  3. Support: Team members supported each other and ensured DTM Aletta was focused and all her needs would be taken care of. I saw the value of teamwork.
  4. Communication Etiquette : We would address people by name and warmly welcome guests to our Candidates Corner.
  5. Service Excellence : The team had a commitment to serve long days and stretching hours.
  6. Generosity: DTM Aletta gave every guest a gift pack with a generous serving of practical leadership tools.
  7. Gratitude: We were grateful for support; we acknowledged appreciation that people took time to visit with our corner. DTM Aletta was always in and expressing gratitude .
  8. Memories : Everyone who had an interview with DTM Aletta had their pictures taken with our Candidate.
  9. Commitment: We had unrelenting commitment to this our dream- to serve DTM Aletta and represent all our members in this effort.
  10. Focus: We had laser focus on this one mission. We were going to see ID Aletta elected and we would grant the leaders an opportunity to support our Candidate of Choice.


For me the highlight of Convention was when the business meeting was in session. The impeccable assortment  of meeting etiquette and the observation of parliamentary procedures was captivating.

I also saw first hand the value that is placed on the members as proxies were treated with so much respect. Every member matters.

The majority would rule but the minority would be heard. Members were treated to unconditional courtesy.

I was particularly humbled by leaders from across the world who gave testimony of how they knew DTM Aletta’s commitment to service. We had the ‘ golden candidate ‘ and that was special.

And typical #PeopleMakingHistory DTM Aletta Rochat was duly elected to the role of International Director for Region 11! We must continue to celebrate this success and continue to support her as she represents us all. I must say yes, people voted for excellence, and excellence was evident in how DTM Aletta had served and progressed on this journey.


And back home: we also had voted for Excellence – #PeopleMakingHistory making Smedleys Distinguished award! We took to the International stage our banner and District 74 emerged victorious.

We stood tall in the hall of fame.

Colorado left me very proud and the experience more humbling.

“In service we become distinguished.”

Dorothy Chanakira DTM