By Setma Maddox, DTM, Speakers Bureau Chair
I have lived in almost every corner of Texas and once in the cold north of Chicago. I quit counting the number of moves after 33. My most formative years were spent in Seguin, Texas. Like most of my female classmates, I married soon after graduation and started a family; the results of that decision are evident in my two very bright and talented children, five grandchildren, and three great grandchildren. I have lived through multiple wars, childhood diseases and “survived” polio.
I started my college education while working for a Texas political entity located in Seguin while my children were young. I moved frequently and that gave me cause to drop my educational endeavors for many years. I finally graduated from UTA with a BA in Sociology – 1990 and a MA in Sociology- 1993. While holding a Master’s degree, I taught Sociology at Texas Wesleyan University for five years; helped develop a viable Sociology Program there; periodically taught statistics at the School of Social Work at UTA, and worked on my PHD program at UNT where I was awarded a full scholarship. I guess you might say I like to multi-task.
My activities outside of education include being co-owner of Lickety Split Scrapbooks,LLC along with my daughter since 2003 (I am current semi-retired from that endeavor), reading, quilting, and Toastmasters. I have been tested and found to be an extreme introvert but Toastmasters has changed my approach to life. I came to Toastmasters after I left Texas Wesleyan because two friends dared me to join a public speaking group so I wouldn’t “crawl back into my shell” — their words. I looked up public speaking on the computer and found a link to Toastmasters. I printed out some information including a list of clubs with meeting dates and times and showed it to my friends. One was a nurse and noticed that Afterburners met on Tuesday evenings at All Saints Hospital. She said she would go with me and join if I joined. She also mentioned we might meet some eligible doctors. Never happened! In March 1999, we joined the club on our first visit and here I am almost 20 years later.
I earned my first DTM in February 2011. I am currently working on my second and third DTM by striving to finish the legacy program while working through my first Pathways Program. I have served as Club Treasurer, VP Education, President, and currently serve as Secretary for Afterburners and VP Membership for Executive Leadership. I served as District Treasurer 2009-2010 and Division A Director in 2017-2018. I sought the opportunity to serve as Speaker’s Bureau Chair because I want to reinstate the other purposes of the Speaker’s Bureau. In the more recent past, due to busy schedules, the bulk of delivering speeches to outside groups has fallen on the Speakers Bureau Chair. It is my intent and goal to spread those opportunities around more. In order to ensure the District is delivering a quality product to the community, my team is working hard to create new guidelines for acceptance into the Speakers Bureau, adding ways to spread the news, developing an on-going venue list, and making speeches. Just to be clear, the Speakers Bureau is not just for people who want to make speeches, it is also for those individuals who feel they would enjoy being a knowledgeable tour guide at the zoo, museum or art exhibit or to help with a science or history fair. We need to get the word out that the benefits of Toastmasters are for everyone, not just a chosen few. I have one hidden talent —I can usually perceive a person’s niche in giving speeches or working in a particular field. Email me and tell me if you have something you are pressed to share with the public. I’ll do my best to come listen to you make a presentation and then we can talk.