Our Featured Toastmaster for July is Deidre Hughey. Deidre has been a Toastmaster since May 2006. She is the owner and BUZZologist of The BUZZ Builder providing Social Media Strategies That Make Sense for Speakers and Authors. Deidre is a professional speaker, a writer for Women’s Edge Magazine, the host of Author BUZZ (a web-based talk radio show), president of WBON-Cary, founder and facilitator for Triangle Women’s connection and a member of the committee for Morrisville Chamber’s KNOW (Knowledgeable Network of Women). When she has free time, she loves to spend it with her husband and two children or sharing a bottle of chewy red wine with a friend.
Joseph Joel Sherman is the Vice President of Public Relations for Chapel Hill Toastmasters, and the director of Business Tribes Management Consulting.
Joseph: Why are you a Toastmaster?
Deidre: Initially, I became a Toastmaster because I wanted to get over my fear of standing up in front of a room full of people. I remain a Toastmaster because of the wonderful support, amazing camaraderie and I continue to learn every week about myself and others.
Joseph: What do you like about Chapel Hill Toastmasters?
Deidre: Chapel Hill Toastmasters holds a special place in my heart because there is so much giving from the members. From my first visit, I felt welcomed. However, I specifically joined the Chapel Hill Toastmasters because of the quality and care put into the speech evaluations.
Joseph: Could you please share a favorite Toastmasters moment that you especially enjoyed for found to be inspiring?
Deidre: I think it was at the moment that I found myself helping a newly inducted fellow Toastmaster to get over the jitters of presenting her first speech. It was a rather profound moment for me because I remember how terrified I was when I first started. Being able to see how far I had come and to be able to tell this person that every single person in the room started at the same place…well, let’s just say, it was an eye-opening moment and I was thrilled to help!
Joseph: What speaking goals have you set as a Toastmaster?
Deidre: As a Toastmaster? Well, I don’t have specific goals (I’m probably not supposed to say that…) though I work on each of my manuals on a weekly basis. My speaking goals are more in tune to what I desire to achieve outside of Toastmasters which is to become a sought after professional speaker.
Joseph: What leadership goals goals have you set as a Toastmaster?
Deidre: Again, no specific goals. I do wish to complete the Leadership track and eventually I’m sure I will rise to a level within Toastmasters and assume leadership roles outside of my local club.
Joseph: Do you apply what you learned in Toastmasters to your work?
Deidre: Yes. Daily. My business requires that I teach individuals, groups and participate in speaking engagements on a weekly basis. I would simply like to add that it doesn’t matter whether you are an aspiring speaker, an experienced speaker or simply want an outlet for personal development, Toastmasters, well, I’m partial, I’ll say – The Chapel Hill Toastmasters will open its arms to you and welcome you to the family. You just have to be willing to join us at 8 am on Saturday! It’s okay, you can wear your bunny slippers.