By Tahseen Mohammad, Youth Leadership Chair
Tahseen Mohammad is born in a small town in south India. When he was in high school, his parents migrated to a famous city Hyderabad for their children’s education. Tahseen grew up in a middle-class family. His father was a historian, archeologist and public speaker who spoke in seven different national and international languages including English, Arabic and Persian. On the other hand, his mother was a shy home maker who dedicated her life for the right upbringing of her children.
Tahseen completed his masters’ degree in Urdu language literature, and a post-graduate diploma in Software Engineering along with other popular computer courses before he got an opportunity to visit USA on an IT work visa. Soon, his life changed when his employer sponsored his green card in 2002 when he was in Portland, Oregon. Further, his manager approved and sponsored a masters degree that he completed in 2007 from Oregon Health and Science University in Science & Technology Management.
Tahseen is ACB and CL in Toastmasters’ education. He completed multiple professional certifications including PMP and Cloud Solution Architect. He is an IT professional with about 20 years of IT experience. He is employed as an Enterprise Cloud Architect at JDA Software in Irving, TX. He is a longtime mentor and coach at Toastmasters.
Everything was sailing smoothly for Tahseen in his new home town in Portland, Oregon; except for his unique communication style. He was rated as one of the best employees by his manager but with a big concern due to his weak and introvert communication style along with his sweet Indian accent. He was finally advised by his manager to join Toastmasters. Being a loyal employee, he immediately joined the Toastmasters club in his office over 10 years ago. Since then, he actively participated in club activities, performed almost every club leadership role and competed in numerous speech competitions at all levels until the district level.
Within a few years after joining Toastmasters, Tahseen realized positive changes in his personality and professional relationships with his co-workers. He decided to teach his 9-year old daughter public speaking and in turn he regularly learned American accent from her. While he finally started winning toastmasters contests, his daughter won the D7 2010 youth speech contest and was invited to give a keynote speech at the D7 Spring conference. With the outpouring of support, Tahseen led an open youth gavel club in a small Muslim community center with the support from D7 leadership team and other Toastmasters. Within a few years, the youth club became one of the most powerful youth speakers club in the district and beyond, and it continues to function and grow even today. Further, the youth club created a strong bridge between different communities as people from all walks and backgrounds assembled every week with their young children in a small Muslim community center.
Tahseen had to leave his Portland home town for good, and fortunately he landed in Texas in July of 2015. Within a couple of months, he first launched a new gavel club in Irving, Texas. He also started participating in D25 speech contests. Though he could not achieve the same level of success as he did in Portland mainly due to time constraints; however, he continues to grow his skills, and also help the youth in Irving and other D25 areas. His youth club activities brought him once again to the notice of D25 leadership team and he was advised to chair the D25 youth leadership program which he graciously accepted.
I cannot imagine my life could change so much in Toastmasters. I signed up and joined Toastmasters about 10 years ago for one reason but today I enjoy, I grow and I help others grow (especially youth) through Toastmasters. Toastmasters is a magic and it creates a win-win situation for all.