By Diana Patton, DTM, Past District Governor
Toastmasters International 2019 Convention was definitely a ‘Peak’ experience. This was my eleventh consecutive convention. This one may have been my favorite. It was held at the Gaylord Rockies Resort and Convention Center in Aurora, Colorado. It was a lovely facility and easy to get to all the events.
My trip started on Tuesday, August 20. Marylee Mims and I met at the airport and the adventure began. We got to visit the new world headquarters in Englewood, Colorado on our first day in Denver.
I never tire of the opening ceremony on Wednesday evening which begins with each District’s incoming District Director carrying a flag from one of the 120+ countries Toastmasters International operates in. The D25 group cheered as Jamie Pickering carried in the flag from the country of one of her fellow club members. Phil Hansen was the speaker at the opening ceremonies and well worth checking out his website
Each day was action packed with two choices for hour long education sessions. Can’t forget the marathon business meeting – over 4.5 hours. It was exciting to carry proxy for 6 clubs. The format of the semi-finals and finals for World Champion of Public speaking changed this year. It was great that the second place winner was from our Region 3, Luisa Montalvo. At the Region 3 gathering we met leaders and members from two Mexico Districts that are now part of our Region.
I took pride knowing that several our past International Presidents at the convention visited out District over the last several years. Our outgoing International President Lark Doley (the ‘Golden’ lady) is truly an amazing Texas Toastmaster! Getting a hug from here made my evening.
The last evening is always a little bittersweet. We had a nice group from District 25 attending the inspiring President’s Inauguration followed by dinner with table of 10 District 25 members. Our District and Toastmasters International are in good hands with strong leaders.
The best part of all is always the people. Thanks to my roommates Marylee and Virginia for all the great memories!
Now to start planning for convention #12 – Paris, France, August 5-8, 2020. I hope to see you there!