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About Toastmasters

Slide Presentation about ToastmastersHistory

Toastmasters began at a YMCA in Santa Ana, CA by Dr. Ralph C. Smedley, in October 1924. The mission at the time was "training in the art of public speaking and in presiding over meetings." The name "Toastmaster" was chosen in the hopes it would appeal to the target people group of young men.

In 1930 the organization turned international with the opening of a club in British Columbia, Canada. Eight years later, District 3 was organized, earning it the distinction of being the first District outside the state of California. These days, there are over 200 Toastmasters clubs with over 3,000 members in the Arizona District. World wide, the 501(c)(3) non-profit educational organization boasts a membership of nearly 250,000 members in more than 12,500 clubs in more than a hundred countries.

Organizational Structure

Level Description Leader(s)
Club A group of approximately 20 (though this varies by quite a bit) Toastmasters President and 7 other club officers
Area A group of 4-6 Clubs in a relatively close geographical area – ours is called Area T6, which includes clubs in Mesa Area Director
Division A group of 6-7 Areas in a relatively close geographical area – ours is called the Tonto Division, which includes Areas in Tempe, Mesa, and Scottsdale Division Director
District Ours is District 3 – the State of Arizona District Director, Program Quality Director, Club Growth Director, Administration Manager, Finance Manager, Public Relations Manager, District Executive Committee, District Council
World Headquarters The paid staff of Toastmasters Executive Director & Management Staff
Toastmasters International The whole of the organization Board of Directors, President, Executive Committee


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