Tuesday, September 9, 2008

D31 WCPS Competitors & Champs

“Great champions have an enormous sense of pride. The people who excel are those who are driven to show the world and prove to themselves just how good they are”. Nancy Lopez

“Feedback is the breakfast of champions.” Ken Blanchard

Toastmaster members from District 31 have competed in both the Regional Vii and International Speech Contests since the 1950’s. Four have even won the First, Second and Third Place title of “World Champions of Public Speaking” especially during the past eight (8) years.

D31 has had two first place winners – 2001 WCPS, Darren LaCroix, 2007 WCPS, Vikas Jhingran, Ph. D., one second place winner, 2003 WCPS, David Sanfascon, and one third place winner, 2008 WCPS, Dr. Katherine Morrison.

“You are all Champions in your own way. That doesn't mean you have to be number 1 or be the best. Just do your best. If you aren't first, then make those people ahead of you break records by pushing them with your personal best. Consider for a moment what we achieve from athletics - the sheer fun of competing - the building of a healthy and alert mind and body - stamina, courage, perseverance, dedication, commitment, selflessness and most importantly, the will to excel.” Anoymous

Beginning in the late 1950’s, George Bissel, from the old Newton Club represented District 31 at the International Speech Contest.

"True champions aren't always the ones that win, but those with the most guts". Mia Hamm.

Then in 1980, Dan Blake from the Attleboro Club, (renamed - Achievers Club # 1625) represented District 31 in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

"If you're a champion, you have to have it in your heart". Chris Evert

Astoundingly, since 1998, District 31 has dominated the World Champion of Public Speaking - Region Vii Contest.

“Champion the right to be yourself; dare to be different and to set your own pattern; live your own life and follow your own star.” Wilfred Peterson

In 1998, Dacia Jones Nickerson, DTM, from the Providence Toastmasters Club competed in Palm Desert, California.

“Champions know that success is inevitable; that there is no such thing as failure, only feedback. They know that the best way to forecast the future is to create it.”
Michael J. Gelb

It was in 2001 that Darren La Croix, member of the Bose Speakers Club # 8879 won first place title with his speech "OUCH"! at the Toastmasters International Speech Contest held in Anaheim, California.

“Champions aren´t made in the gyms. Champions are made from something they have deep inside them - a desire, a dream, a vision.” Muhammad Ali (American Boxer and Activist, b.1942)

A year later in 2002 Terry Schutt, DTM competed for the title in San Antonio, Texas.

"Champions know there are no shortcuts to the top. They climb the mountain one step at a time. They have no use for helicopters!” Judi Adler quotes

In 2003, David Sanfacon placed second in the world in Atlanta, Georgia. David holds the distinction of being the first and only International second place world winner from District 31.

“If you want to take your mission in life to the next level, if you're stuck and you don't know how to rise, don't look outside yourself. Look inside. Don't let your fears keep you mired in the crowd. Abolish your fears and raise your commitment level to the point of no return, and I guarantee you that the Champion Within will burst forth to propel you toward victory.” Bruce Jenner American Athlete, b.1949

In 2007, Vikas Jhingan, Ph. D. member of the Humor & Drama Club, Tuesday Toastmasters at MIT (originally from India) won first place with his speech - "The Swami's Question" in Phoenix Arizona. Giving District 31 Two WCPS First Place Crowns.

“Champions keep playing until they get it right.” Billie Jean King (American Tennis Player considered to be one of the greatest female tennis players in history. b.1943)

In 2008, Dr. Katherine Morrison member of Center Speakers Club won Third Place in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. History was made by having a woman win from D31 as well as the first third place winner from D31. ALSO Two woman competed and each took home a trophy and a title - (First Place winner LaShuda Rundles). Well done ladies!

“A champion is someone who gets up when he can't.” Jack Dempsey

WOW - How about a STANDING OVATION for all of these CHAMPS who had the "Courage to Compete" and win the Region Vii Contest and then go on to the International Stage!!

It could be YOU up there! It all starts inside, begin with an idea, write a speech, get a coach, get feedback and practice with "STAGE TIME"! "STAGE TIME"! "STAGE TIME"!! - as 2001 WCPS Darren LaCroix would say!

view Darren;s Website -

Want to learn how ? Join Toastmasters

Want to get coached? Join the Champions Edge - use my affliate link -



Definitions of champion on the Web:
• someone who has won first place in a competition
• someone who fights for a cause
• supporter: a person who backs a politician or a team etc.; "all their supporters came out for the game"; "they are friends of the library"
• holding first place in a contest; "a champion show dog"; "a prizewinning wine"
• ace: someone who is dazzlingly skilled in any field
• protect or fight for as a champion


gadgetguy.ca said...

Hi Sherri. I came across your blog with Google Alerts. I find your posts interesting and informative and will be adding it to the list of resources I keep. I'm the LGM for D42 - Edmonton Alberta Canada and producer of Toastcaster - Podcast for Toastmasters. http://www.toastcaster.com

Greg Gazin, DTM
LGM District 42

Sherri Raftery, M.Ed. said...

Greetings Greg!

I appreciate your taking the time to read my BLOG and comment!

I have also peeked at your podcast and will view it often! You may want to check out Bo Bennet's Talking Toastmasters


I noticed that Palmo Carpino is from you District - WHAT A GEM! Send him a shout out.

Hope to connect with you at the 2009 Convention at FOXWOODS - in Conneticut - closer to my next of the woods!

Good Luck on your leadership journey the LGM job ROCKS!

All the best!