Thursday, July 17, 2008

“Effective Immediately”

“Acceptance of one's life has nothing to do with resignation; it does not mean running away from the struggle. On the contrary, it means accepting it as it comes, with all the handicaps of heredity, of suffering, of psychological complexes and injustices”. Paul Tournier

Friends what do you think when you read or hear these two words together?
…..“Effective Immediately”

I received this email notice on Monday July 14, 2008 at 8:21 PM – since it went out to all the current District Officers within the entire Toastmasters World I am sure the exact date and time may varied.

The e-mail sender was Diana Metcalfe, Executive Assistant of Toastmasters International to Donna Groh, who was the Executive Director written on behalf of 2007-2008, International President, Chris Ford, DTM

Dear District Officer:

It is my duty to inform you that today I have accepted the resignation of Ms. Donna Groh, Executive Director to Toastmasters International, effective immediately.

Mr. Daniel Rex is appointed Active Executive Director as of today July 14, 2008 until further notice.

On behalf of Toastmasters International, I have expressed our gratitude to Donna for her seven years of loyal and dedicated service to our organization.


Chris Ford, DTM,
International President 2007-2008

“Shaping Ourselves…Shaping Our World”

Now this letter came as a complete surprise to me (and MANY of us) since we just completed our Region Vii “Top Three” District Officer Training during the Region Vii Conference in Rockville Maryland. The training was given by Donna Groh and Chris Ford, and our Region Vii International Directors, Val Albert and Kristin Nicholson.

But the even BIGGER shocker is that our Toastmasters International Convention begins on August 12, 2008 in Calgary Canada – this is just a few short weeks away when many toastmasters from around the world will unite to celebrate for about a week and Donna Groh was the Chief Executive Officer for our entire organization.

We are all shaking our heads and asking “WHAT HAPPENED”? Yet, we may never know the exact reasons – but friends right now this BIG BUZZ is probably equal to the BIG BUZZ about 2008 Calgary Convention itself…

Ever have a letter written “Effective Immediately” on YOUR behalf?

One of my favorite Table Topic (impromptu) questions is...

“Please share a time when your setback became your comeback”?



acceptance of despair the act of giving up (a claim or office or possession etc.)
a formal document giving notice of your intention to resign; "he submitted his resignation as of next month"

A resignation is the formal act of giving up or quitting one's office or position. It can also refer to the act of admitting defeat in a game like chess, indicated by the resigning player turning his king on its side. ...
Resignation is the twenty-second episode


a large formal assembly; "political convention"

something regarded as a normative example; "the convention of not naming the main character"; "violence is the rule not the exception"; "his formula for impressing visitors"
(diplomacy) an international agreement conventionality: orthodoxy as a consequence of being conventional the act of convening

A convention is a set of agreed, stipulated


Craig Strachan said...

I got the same email from WHQ. I wonder what has happened, and why the sudden resignation?

I hope they shed a little light at the convention.


Sherri Raftery, M.Ed. said...

Hi Craig -

Let's hope we find out in a few short weeks!!

Can;t wait to connect with you again in CALGARY!!


Anonymous said...

Hi Sherri/Craig,

I am D D Daruvala a Past District Officer from District 80.

Effective Immediately has a lot of negative connotations. There is no such thing as resigned for personal reasons,for health reasons or to pursue other interests. All this is a way of diverting the issue and protecting the so called confidentiality.

I know of a case where a Director of a public listed company was about to get into the trouble with the law for insider trading.
They stated that he resigned with immediate effect for health reasons. My foot!

It is my dream that all toastmasters can be forthright with each other on all issues with exceptions off course



Sherri Raftery, M.Ed. said...

Greetings -
D D Daruvala - Past District Officer from District 80!!

Thank you for your post.

Amazingly enough at the 2008 Toastmasters International Convention in Calgary - not a word about "Effective Immediately"!!

I think I only heard Donna Groh's name mentioned briefly during the Executive Directors Board meeting when the outgoing President, Chris Ford, DTM announced that Dan Rex is the new Executive Director.

The crowd roared with applause! Congrats to Dan - What an honor - and he has the respect of the entire Toastmasters World!