September Featured Toastmaster: Sharon A. Hill

Sharon Anita Hill, DTM

Sharon Anita Hill, DTM

Sharon A. Hill, author and speaker and MBA spent more than 20 years as a development and marketing manager at Fortune 500 giant IBM.

She is the president of Sharon Hill International which is her motivational and educational speaking business. Sharon is a certified etiquette trainer, trained by the American Business Etiquette Trainers Association,  and member of the National Speakers Association. Sharon is also a Certified Communicator from Duke University.

Sharon has served on several Boards of Directors and currently on the Big Brothers Big Sisters board of directors and the National Association of Women Business Owners.

Sharon is the author of four books and has just completed her fifth book focusing on proper etiquette.

Joseph Joel Sherman is the Vice President of Public Relations for Chapel Hill Toastmasters, and the director of Business Tribes Management Consulting.

Joseph Joel: Why are you a Toastmaster?

Sharon: Originally, in 2004 it was to become a better speaker. Now, I’m fulfilled with my leadership roles, the camaraderie with Toastmasters world-wide, and the joy of seeing people’s lives changed for the better because of Toastmasters.

As a professional speaker, I am a Toastmaster to practice my speeches as dress rehearsals. The feedback is critical and amazing.

Joseph Joel: What do you like about Chapel Hill Toastmasters?

Sharon: The people, structure, evaluations, day/time of the week and the example it sets for all other clubs. To me, Chapel Hill Toastmasters is the crème de la crème of clubs. It is so hard to be humble when talking about Chapel Hill Toastmasters.

Joseph Joel: Could you please share a favorite Toastmasters moment that you especially enjoyed for found to be inspiring?

Sharon: My inspiring experience was watching toastmaster Cathy Sears blossom. When she joined Chapel Hill Toastmasters, she stammered, had a bunch of ‘uhs,’ and was extremely nervous as she worked through her CC.  Imagine my exhilaration when she WON the District 37 International Speech contest in 2006 (or was it 2007?). I got chills, I cried,  I smeared my mascara… what a glorious inspiration!!

Joseph Joel: What speaking goals have you set as a Toastmaster? What are you doing to meet those speaking goals?

Sharon: I wanted to be a DTM (Distinguished Toastmaster) and I achieved it in three years.  Maybe I’ll try for two DTMs.  I’ve already finished my second CC and have only six more speeches to earn another AC-Bronze.

Joseph Joel: What leadership goals have you set as a Toastmaster? What are you doing to meet those leadership goals?

Sharon: By fate and hard work, I’m now the 2009-2010 District 37 Lt. Gov of Education and Training. In 2010-2011, I hope to be the District 37 Governor aka the gran fromage, the leadership nabob, the Nubian Queen).

My goal is to make District 37 finish the year as President’s Distinguished (one of the top six districts in the world).  As District 37 Lt of Marketing, my last position, I’m proud to announce that our district finished 8th in the world, beating the previous record of finishing 9th in the world. Competition makes us stronger. Although I’m speaking at the District level, we can’t get there unless we focus on members first. My leadership goal is to have a bunch of deliriously happy District 37 Toastmasters achieve their goals.

Joseph Joel: Do you apply what you learned in Toastmasters to your work, academic studies, community or faith based organizations?

Sharon: Actually, I’ve brought my IBM leadership strengths into Toastmasters which I believe accounts for much of my leadership success. But I do apply my Toastmasters speech feedback into my professional speaking.


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