Black Swan June 2016


Black Swan June 2016

The Newsletter of Toastmasters District 17

Editor: Auriole D'Souza




We are now at the final stage of the Toastmaster year 2015-2016 and as I reach the end of my task as Editor of the Black Swan Newsletter I wish to thank every one of you for your contributions over the last 12 months.  Your motivating and often stimulating articles and photos have given us an insight into your personal experiences as a toastmaster.  Thanks also to the District Officers for their reports which many of us look forward to reading each month.

Kind regards



Auriole D'Souza DTM
Black Swan Editor
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The End Of The Year, But Not The Dream

Toastmasters, today I sit delighted with the achievements of so many of you.

I know this has been a difficult year in your clubs so many conflicting priorities outside of the toastmasters world. Yet you have conquered the challenge and survived the year with great achievement.  Your dream has delivered a great focus on success.

You have done a fantastic job of looking after your members.  The level of member achievement is very high and I am sure also the level of enjoyment in your clubs.

Congratulations to the club committees and leaders who have guided you along the way.

The reflection I have of 12 months ago as I dreamt of the year ahead and what was possible in our district is so vivid in my mind.

What I did not see was Charles Fisher as District Toastmaster of the year or Patricia D’Cruze as District Officer of the year.  It would take a very good guess to have predicted the Division Director of the year or Area Director of the year.  Peter Harrison and Catherine O’Brien are most deserved winners of those awards.  Presidents distinguished division and area are a real challenge and I congratulate them on achieving the highest possible level of distinguished division and area.

All division directors and most of the area directors have performed their role as well and arguably better than others.  Congratulations and thank you for a year of achievement.

Our convention this year was fantastic and in case you missed it, the co chairs had not been to a convention previously.  The success and professional weekend is a testament to Laila and Richard, City of Perth Toastmasters Club,  and the management of Leonor Ragan and her team.

Thank you to my extended team, Tom, Alison, Leith, Melinda, Maree, Charles,  Auriole, David and Mark, without you we could not have finished so strongly or achieved what we did achieve.

Congratulations to Sue and Patricia who were elected to their role after the first ever challenge at that level.  I am so proud of the maturity of our district that we have leaders and members who understand the value of district leadership and are prepared to put themselves in front of the members and ask for their vote to a district leadership position.  I do hope that every year we are electing our leaders in a contested vote.

You can be sure having the confidence of the membership and the mandate to lead is valuable to you, the member who elected them, and the leader who knows you trust them to do their job.

I know we have a great team with Leonor as District Director who will lead us all through a very successful year.  The passion she has, will infect us all and progress through all clubs and leaders.  I am very much looking forward to where this year takes the district.

In closing I urge you to continue to Dream big, Team together and Make it happen, or in my view, continue to be DTMs.  Toastmasters is, like it or not all, about ME.  (Members Experience).

Aug-DD D17 Ian Pickens

Ian Pickens DTM
District 17 Director 2015-2016
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Educational Corner

Educational Achievements from 1 July to June 30 2016

As of the 30 June our clubs have achieved:

175      Competent Communicators

72        Competent Leaders

38        Advanced Communicators Bronze

26        Advanced Leaders Bronze

21        Advanced Communicators Silver

11        Advanced Leaders Silver

20       Advanced Communicators Gold

13        Distinguished Toastmasters

6          Leadership Excellence

In total there were 382 educational awards.  Our District 17 team acknowledges your personal achievements.

Congratulations!!! What amazing dedication and commitment from our club members.  We hope that you have enjoyed achieving your personal goals.  Well done!

To see who has achieved educational awards this year.  Click here.

Education Awards Recipients


Award Date Name Club
CL 6/01/2016 Bower, Robin S. Plain Speakers
ACS 6/01/2016 Bielski, Tom Plain Speakers
ACG 6/02/2016 Blackburn, Tim D. CPA
CC 6/02/2016 Allen, Judith L. Guildford Stars  Club
ALB 6/07/2016 Sloboda, Anna Applecross
CL 6/07/2016 Sloboda, Anna Applecross
CL 6/07/2016 Harris, Peter ToastiES
CL 6/07/2016 Wipulaguna, Vindya ToastiES
ACG 6/08/2016 Lavell, Gladys Doreen Mundaring
CC 6/08/2016 Malaga, Monica CM Western Founders  Club
CL 6/09/2016 Petrucci, Rosetta CPA
CC 6/09/2016 Stepanova, Marina Plain Speakers
ACB 6/10/2016 Harry, Justin Swan  Club
CC 6/10/2016 Hudson, Tracey Victoria Quay Club
ACB 6/11/2016 Hunter, Linda Susan Northern Lights
CC 6/12/2016 Allan, Kate Durack Club
CC 6/12/2016 Porrins, Belinda Mandjar Speakers
CC 6/12/2016 Barker, James Northern Lights
CL 06/13/2016 Carrie, Peter Victoria Quay Club
ALB 06/14/2016 O'Brien, Catherine Competitive Speakers
CL 06/14/2016 O'Brien, Catherine Competitive Speakers
CC 06/14/2016 Idris, Baribela Gosnells Foothills  Club
CL 06/15/2016 Cappelletti, Brendon Curtin GSB Club
CC 06/19/2016 Mojas, Denis Stirling Club
CC 06/20/2016 Sansome, Kevin Neil Applecross
CL 06/20/2016 Newman, Michael A St George's  Club
ALB 06/21/2016 Teh, Jon Belmont  Club
CL 06/21/2016 Teh, Jon Belmont  Club
ACB 06/21/2016 Teh, Jon Belmont  Club
CC 06/22/2016 Abudulai, Laila City of Perth  Club
CC 06/22/2016 O'Connor, Martin J. Competitive Speakers
CC 06/22/2016 Meyer, Almarie Competitive Speakers
CC 06/22/2016 Budhiraja, Harsh Curtin GSB Sundowner
CC 06/23/2016 Prewett, Gerry Craig Belmont  Club
CC 06/23/2016 Harrison, Peter Currambine
CL 06/23/2016 Harrison, Peter Currambine
ACS 06/23/2016 Turnhout, Richard Mandjar Speakers
CL 06/24/2016 Walsh, Jacqui L. Shell Australia  Club
ACG 06/25/2016 Brennan, Melinda J. Sandgroper  Club
CC 06/26/2016 De La Hoz Ruiz, Lizeth Karratha  Club
CC 06/26/2016 Fox, David Allan Karratha  Club
ACG 06/26/2016 Fisher, Charles A. Northern Gourmet
CC 06/26/2016 Fisher, Charles A. Northern Gourmet
ACS 06/26/2016 Petrich, Peter J. Northern Gourmet
CC 06/27/2016 Yap, Alicia City of Perth  Club
CC 06/27/2016 Walsham, Sam Currambine
CC 06/27/2016 Salmon, Kirsten Curtin GSB Sundowner
ALB 06/27/2016 AC Pascale C. Northern Gourmet
CL 06/27/2016 AC Pascale C. Northern Gourmet
CC 06/27/2016 AC Pascale C. Northern Gourmet
CC 06/27/2016 AC Pascale C. Perth Justalk
CC 06/27/2016 D'Cruze, Patricia Ann Perth Justalk
CL 06/27/2016 Taylor, Rebecca Anne Shell Australia  Club
CC 06/27/2016 Condran, Casey Shell Australia  Club
CC 06/27/2016 Taylor, Rebecca Anne Shell Australia  Club
ACG 06/28/2016 Prewett, Gerry Craig Belmont  Club
ACG 06/29/2016 Ragan, Leonor Curtin GSB Club
ACG 06/29/2016 Cullen, Ann Lorraine Maylands  Club
CC 06/29/2016 Warkcup, Samantha Terrace Club
ACS 06/29/2016 Lloyd, Robyn Terrace Club
CC 06/30/2016 Vorster, Gerrit M Applecross
ALB 06/30/2016 Davies, Eric Victor Aspire
ACG 06/30/2016 Pickens, Maree A. Mount Hawthorn
CC 06/30/2016 Pickens, Maree A. Mount Hawthorn
CC 06/30/2016 Machholz, Nathan Mount Hawthorn
CL 06/30/2016 Pickens, Ian A. Mount Hawthorn
CL 06/30/2016 Hounsham, Christine Mount Hawthorn
CC 06/30/2016 Hounsham, Christine Mount Hawthorn

To see who has achieved educational awards this year, click here.

June Triple Crown Award Recipient


Name Count Award
Fisher, Charles A. 3 CC, CC, ACG
Harrison, Peter 3 ALB, CL, CC
Lavell, Gladys Doreen 3 ACG, LDREXC, ALS
Teh, Jon 3 ACB, CL, ALB

As of 30 June, 35 Members have achieved their triple crown. (these members have achieved three or more awards since the 1st July 2015).

To see all the Triple Crown recipients for 2015 to 2016, click here

Training Leadership club Officer, District Officers Training 2016-2017

The following are the training dates, times and links to register:

Sunday 10 July TLI/COT #2, 1:30 pm to 5:30 pm at the Innovation Centre, Technology Park, 9 De Laeter Way, Bentley.

Thursday 14 July, TLI/CO #3, 6:00 pm to 10:00 pm at the Innovation Centre, Technology Park, 9 De Laeter Way, Bentley.

Sunday 17 July TLI/COT # 4, 1:30 pm to 5:30 pm at the Innovation Centre, Technology Park. 9 De Laeter Way, Bentley.

Sunday 24 July Southwest TLI/COT, 10:30 am to 2:30 pm.

Sunday 28 August, Kalgoorlie TLI/COT, 8:30 am to 12:30 pm.

We look forward to seeing you there.  We strongly believe that having educated club officers and club members is critical to the success of our Toastmasters Clubs.

Thanks for all your support this year.  I have enjoyed sharing with you your educational progress.  Your dedication and hard work in achieving your educational goals has been very inspiring.  What a marvellous journey it has been, I feel very privileged to have been your first Program Quality Director.


Leonor Ragan-Sept 15

Leonor Ragan DTM
District 17 Program Quality Director 2015-2016

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Distinguished Clubs For 2015-2016 

It is with great pride that we acknowledge the following clubs, club officers and members for the outstanding performance during the year.  We recognise your dedication and commitment to our District 17.  Congratulations and well done!!!!!!

Presidents Distinguished Clubs
Applecross Toastmasters
Belmont Toastmasters Club
Canning Vale Toastmasters
City of Perth Toastmasters Club
Currambine Toastmasters
Curtin GSB Club
Curtin GSB Sundowner Toastmasters Club
DTM Pathway
Durack Club
Electric Toasters
Ellenbrook Toastmasters Club
Fremantle Gateway Toastmasters Club
Kalamunda Toastmasters Club
Mount Hawthorn
Murdoch Southsiders Toastmasters Club
Northern Gourmet Toastmasters
Northern Lights, Western Australia
Perth Justalk
Plain Speakers
Project Managers
Sandgroper Toastmasters Club
Sunday Sundowners Toastmasters Club
Victoria Park
Victoria Quay Club
Western Founders Toastmasters Club
Willetton Toastmasters

Select Distinguished Clubs
Dynamic Speakers
Shell Australia Toastmasters Club
St George's Toastmasters Club
Terrace Club

Distinguished Clubs
Aspire Toastmasters
Banksia Speakers Toastmasters Club
Central Communicators
Competitive Speakers Perth
CPA Toastmasters
Karratha Toastmasters Club
Maylands Toastmasters Club
Stirling Club

Well Done!

Thank you District 17 members I will take with me all the fondest memories of this year and treasure them for the rest of my journey.



Leonor Ragan-Sept 15

Leonor Ragan DTM
District 17 Program Quality Director 2015-2016

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The District 17 Team For 2016-2017


District 17 Team


Congratulations once again to our fabulous District 17 leaders.  I am looking forward to, and feel privileged, to be working with you all, to serve the members and future members of District 17, as we endeavour to continue to make our District better every day we can.

We had a very enjoyable and successful District Officer Training (DOT) where all but two Area Directors attended. I hope the information that you received at DOT provided you with the tools to begin your voyage as a leader.

We have begun with a 100% lodgement of all our club’s officers list for 2016-2017.  This gives us the opportunity to start the year with a well deserved half DCP goal.  This is an awesome start!

I know you are dedicated to your role and I am delighted that you agreed to be a part of 2016-2017 District 17 Leadership Team.  We have a great year ahead of us.  Working together we will achieve: our member’s goals, your personal goals, your club goals, your Area goals, your Division goals and our District goals.


Please help me welcome

The District 17 Officers for 2016-2017
Office Held First Name Surname
District Director Leonor Ragan, DTM
Program Quality Director Sue Fallon, DTM
Club Growth Director Patricia D'Cruze, DTM
District Public Relations Manager Almarie Meyer
Division Director Central Allen Hahn, DTM
Division Director Eastern Peter Petrich
Division Governor Northern Catherine O'Brien, DTM
Division Governor Southern Kevin Sansome
Area Director C1 Joseph Kufakwandi
Area Director C2 Elena Mikhaltsevich
Area Director C3 Jon Teh
Area Director C4 Ayesha Harrison-Stewart
Area Director C5 Robyn Lloyd
Area Director E11 Kumar Bharath
Area Director E12 Mina Cho
Area Director E13 Adam Duda
Area Director E14 Morrie Goodz
Area Director N21 Fabian Borraccino
Area Director N22 Meriel Griffiths
Area Director N23 Chris Telenta
Area Director N24 Cathryn McMurray
Area Director N25 Mark Zhang
Area Director S31 Michelle Naidu
Area Director S32 Sophy Gotsis
Area Director S33 John Haynes
Area Director S34 Graham Watson
Area Director S35 David Finnimore
Finance Manager Martin Pearce
Administration Manager Tracey Hudson
District Parliamentarian Mike Helm, DTM
Speechcraft Manager Maree Pickens
District Webmaster David Nicholas, DTM
District Newsletter Editor Lisa Martin
Logistics Manager Fredrick Glisson



Leonor Ragan-Sept 15

Leonor Ragan DTM
District 17 Program Quality Director 2015-2016

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Triple Crown 2015-2016

Triple Crown



Leonor and group

Member                                         Count                                                  Awards

Allen, Judith L. 3 CC, CL, CL
Bhudia, Asvin M. 3 ALB, CC, CL
Bielski, Tom 4 ACS, CC, CL, CC
Browning, Paul Q. 4 LDREXC, ALS, DTM, ACG
Chan, Stephanie 3 CL, CC, ACB
D'Cruze, Patricia Ann 5 ALS, CC, LDREXC, ACG, DTM
D'Souza, Auriole 4 ACG, ALS, DTM, LDREXC
Fisher, Charles A. 3 CC, CC, ACG
Fisher, Elizabeth 3 CL, CL, ACG
Foster, Michael P. 7 CL, ALB, CL, CC, DTM, ACB, CC
Hahn, Allen Edward 4 ACG, ALS, DTM, LDREXC
Harrison, Peter 3 ALB, CL, CC
Haynes, John H 3 ACB, ACG, CC
Hughes, Colin 3 CC, ALS, DTM
Lavell, Gladys Doreen 3 ACG, LDREXC, ALS
Law, Marianne 5 CL, CL, ALS, DTM, CC
Law, Peter C. 5 CC, CC, CC, CC, CC
Liew, Yi-Choong 3 ACS, CL, ACB
Lindsay, Martin 4 CC, CC, CL, CC
Lloyd, Robyn 4 ACB, CC, CL, ALB
Macdonald, Graham R. 3 ACS, CL, ALB
Meyer, Almarie 4 ACS, CL, CC, CC
Naidu, Michele 3 ALB, ACS, CL
Nicholas, David R. 3 ACB, ACS, CC
O'Brien, Catherine 6 ACB, CC, ACG, CC, CL, ALB
O'Brien, Leon P 3 CL, ALB, ACB
O'Connor, Martin J. 4 CC, ALB, ACS, CC
Palmer, John Alexander 3 CC, ALB, CC
Palmer, Mike 3 CC, ALS, DTM
Perriman, Jacqueline 4 CC, CL, ACG, DTM
Teh, Jon 3 ACB, CL, ALB
Veluthakkal, Karunakaran 4 ACG, ALS, DTM, CC
Wilkinson, Ross Phillip 3 CC, CL, CC
Yau, Henry 6 CC, CL, LDREXC, ALS, DTM, ACG

The above members have achieved three or more educational awards.  Many CONGRATULATIONS to all!!!

By achieving these awards, each one of you has not only gained invaluable leadership skills for yourself but you have also contributed to the advancement in the Distinguished Club Program for your club.   I hope you are enjoying your Toastmaster journey.

Leonor Ragan-Sept 15

Leonor Ragan DTM
District 17 Program Quality Director 2015-2016

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Competitive Speakers Perth Charter Meeting

6b-group-comp speakers club

On 16 May 2016, Competitive Speakers Perth became the 8th club of its kind globally to charter.  We held our charter celebration on 22 June 2016.  With 21 dual members, we are Perth’s newest advanced club – with a difference.

Inspired by Ryan Avery 2012 World Champion of Public Speaking, Competitive Speakers Clubs are now established globally across many countries (there are now 9 in total).

The aim of a Competitive Speakers club is to improve the quality and quantity of competitive speakers for Toastmasters across all levels.  Our meetings typically run in a contest style where the Toastmaster of the evening is also the Contest Chair.

On most meetings we have two contests as well as evaluations, a group discussion and a mini educational.  Although we are committed to the DCP, we do not focus on project manual speeches and we do not have minor roles at meetings.  All evaluations are based on the judge’s forms.

The main benefit of the club, explains Martin O’Connor, Club Sponsor and Club President, is that “You get the best feedback available to Toastmasters with Competitive Speaker level feedback and we have had quite a few people join the club because they specifically want to improve their evaluation skills”.

At our Charter Meeting, we had a fun Tall Tales Contest.  We had 7 members deliver a 3-5 minute speech and everyone (including competitors) scored using the judge’s criteria and a lot of fun was had by all.  Following a brief discussion about the benefits of holding that type of session it was decided we may run it again with some additional challenges and twists!

Supper followed and of course there was cake!  Sue Fallon, Officer Elect, Program Quality Director, handed out the Charter Certificates and Badges.

The highlight of the evening was a short personal video message sent by Ryan Avery all the way from Florida.  Ryan has been a tremendous support to the club and encourages us all to continue to Dream Big.

If you would like to improve your speaking and get involved with competitive speaking in Toastmasters (as a contestant or even judge), then come along to find out how we can help you.  We meet every 2nd and 4th Wednesday of each month upstairs at The Irish Club, Subiaco from 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm.


Lisa Evans, DTM
VPM Competitive Speakers Perth

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Area S31 Event

Our Area S31 Director, André Sequeira, organised a sensational night of fellowship and learning for all members of our Area on Friday, May 13th.

Everyone was asked to bring a dish to share and we had a veritable smorgasbord of delectable delights from around the world to dine on.  We also brought our own beverages and there certainly were many noble drops.

7c-Area S31 Event 2016 009

André’s theme for the night was


The 3 Ms being;

Members - engaged & enthusiastic

Meetings - vibrant & fun  

Member needs - are #1      

And the 20 meaning;    

All clubs aspire for 20 Members


The night began with André addressing us and giving his theme and aspirations for the night and the rest of this Toastmasters year for our Area S31.

We had speeches, evaluations, Table Topics, the launch of the Club Visitation Contest and distribution of Passports for all, an educational workshop and a fun section where we got to dress up in Andre’s wife, Neicha’s clothes, whilst we danced or acted out a song.  During the night Phyll Lightbody sold raffle tickets which had excellent prizes such as wine, chocolate and book.  These, along with the prizes for the Club Visitation Contest were all donated by local businesses and members of Andre’s HPL Committee.  The prizes for the Visitation Contest were announced — chocolates, wine, Toastmasters Founder, Ralph Smedley books and a massage from the best massage clinic in Canning Vale.  What a hoot!

7d-IMG_6065All in all, you can’t ask for a better night on Friday the 13th than to be with good company, eat good food, drink good wine, win good prizes and have a good fun time.

Thanks André for a great night which will be long remembered.


Robyn Richards DTM
VPPR Canning Vale Toastmasters Club

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All About Contests

If you are involved in organising a speech contest, then this workshop is for you. This workshop will give you a clear outline of what is involved and answers any questions you may have.

  • Do you need to organise a Club or Area Contest?
  • Do you need to attend a Judging Workshop?
  • How do you work out who is eligible to enter and/or Judge?
  • How many Judges do you need?
  • General Procedures, Speech Timing, Protests and Disqualifications?
  • Having problems deciding where to start?

Come along to the District 17
All About Contests Workshop

Date:      Saturday 30th July 2016

Time:      1:15pm for 1:30pm – 4:30pm

Place:     Shenton Park Community Centre

                240 Onslow Road

                Shenton Park


Go to the Link in this file  All-About-Contests-2016 BS




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