Our estimable President, Kelsey Long, opened this week’s meeting sharing the story of how the city of Nashville was put on the map in the 1800s by group of black university students, direct descendants of slaves, traveling together as a music group. After they performed for the Queen of England, she commented that they “must be from Music City,” which is how Nashville got its famous nickname. Kelsey asked us all to maintain awareness of how often contributions of black people are erased in our country’s history, as she led us into our usual minute of silence in acknowledgment and support of the Black Lives Matter movement. Kelsey then turned the meeting over to the Toastmaster, Dave Burr.
Dave chose “map” as the word of the day and shared some interesting map history and alternative perspectives about maps throughout the meeting. We had nine members in attendance, and Dave got us started right away with our first speaker.
Summer Murphy presented the first prepared speech of the day, a Level 4 talk from the Visionary Communications pathway titled, “Mapping Out a Strategy.” In her speech Summer covered the four tenants she uses in creating a public relations plan for her web development company and for her clients. In a speech packed with information, Summer walked the group through the process of deciding what to promote about a company, identifying the target audience, developing a business website and making personal connections to market the business. Her evaluator, John Doggett noted that Summer’s choice of words in explaining the information technology portion of the talk helped everyone understand her points. He remarked that, although a bit rushed, Summer’s talk contained a lot of good information and was easy to follow.
Our second speaker, Nereida Sutton, presented a Level I speech from the Dynamic Leadership pathway titled “The Monkey on my Back, Lifted.” In this riveting talk Nereida walked us through her experience of being diagnosed with a tumor on her kidney, and the emotional roller coaster that she and her family rode over the next several weeks as she went through surgery and the subsequent recovery process. Nereida’s story and her remarks about the comfort provided by her husband and family during that trying time reminded us all of the importance of having a support network when facing difficult times. Her evaluator, Tim Murphy, echoed the sentiments of the group in saying that Nereida is a gifted story teller and her pace, timing and all of the excellent details really kept her audience engaged in her talk.
Kerstin Haase served as Table Topics Master, and encouraged each respondent to create and tell a humorous story about images she shared on the screen. Our members launched into humorous tales about big plastic lips and hallways filled with balloons. One thing we all took away is Kerstin’s excellent idea of maintaining a Laugh Log – a notebook filled with funny family anecdotes to pull out whenever someone needs a good laugh.
Kelsey Long served as the General Evaluator, and gave a thorough review of the meeting, especially praising Dave’s officially timed minute of silence while members gave feedback to each of the day’s speakers. Norris Bass was the Timer this week, and reported on times for the prepared speeches, Table Topics responses and speech evaluations. Alvin Powell, serving as Grammarian, reminded us all to be careful of the sneaky “lip smack” that can infiltrate our speaking unnoticed, and also to be aware of our word choices so we do not slip into using slang during our talks.
Dave wrapped up the meeting by noting that his favorite map is the view of Earth from space because it has no borders, a good reminder that we are all citizens of the one planet.
The next Sunrise Toastmasters meeting will be at 7 am, October 22 EST on Zoom.
The roles for that meeting are as follows:
Speakers: (1) Alvin, (2) Kelsey
Table Topics: Amelya
Gen. Evaluator: Kerstin
Evaluators: (1) Norris, (2) Nereida
Join us at Sunrise Toastmasters where we have mapped out a successful strategy to help members improve communication competence and develop leadership skills.