19 May, 2023

No Rest for the Weary

By the bylaws of the Speak Easy Gavel Club, I couldn't run for a second full term as Vice President Education. Not that I wanted to; being VPE takes work. After serving as an interim officer for seven months and then for a full term, I've done my bit to further the membership's communication and leadership goals. It's time for someone else to make the schedules, plan special meetings, and track members' progress along the Toastmasters education track.

I was fully prepared to kick back and rest on my laurels. The idea was to work on speech projects from Toastmasters' Storytelling and Communicating on Video manuals and that's all. I wanted a breather. Instead, a clubmate nominated me for President. One by one, over a period of a couple of weeks, almost half of the active members approached to ask me if I'd run. I caved. They voted me in. So much for kicking back.

Outgoing President Roberts is leaving office while the club is on an upward trajectory. Our previous president left in ignominy a minor scandal resulting in the club's first-ever disciplinary hearing, which I, in the capacity of VPE, had to chair. Roberts returned to active membership after a years-long absence, to run for and ultimately serve out the nine months remaining in our ousted leader's term. We were grateful, but not enough to keep him in office for another year

This is not to say that Roberts wasn't a good president. He succeeded in getting a state politician to RSVP as a guest for our annual awards and installation banquet. He also kicked the club's ongoing fundraiser into high gear with the purchase of a deep freeze for storing frozen foods that provide a higher profit margin than Mrs. Freshly's fruit pies offer us. It's no surprise, Roberts was expecting to be re-elected to serve a full term. I understand his disappointment, even though I think a little too much ego-fulfillment fueled his efforts.

Luckily, a Gavel Club or Toastmasters President does less than their Vice President Education has to. I've been training what I hoped would be my successor for months, and now he's taking my place in the role. I can hardly wait to hand over to him the massive black accordion folder that's taken up space beside my desk for a year and a half. The first thing I have to do is compose a vision speech for our upcoming awards and installation banquet.
I have plenty of ideas about how to improve and expand our club doings, including how to better the club's reputation among the prison's population. We'll see how successfully I can herd these cats. Maybe I'll get a chance to present a few speech projects too. Wish me luck!

1 comment:

Byron does not have Internet access. Pariahblog.com posts are sent from his cell by way of a secure service especially for prisoners' use. We do read him your comments, however, and he enjoys hearing your thoughts very much.