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 homemaker who dedicated her life to the right upbringing of her children.
Tahseen completed his master’s 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 the 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 master’s 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 hometown 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 introverted 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 the American accent from her. While he finally started winning toastmasters contests, his daughter won the District 7 2010 youth speech contest and was invited to give a keynote speech at the District 7 Spring conference. With the outpouring of support, Tahseen led an open youth gavel club in a small Muslim community center with support from the District 7 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 hometown for good, and fortunately, he landed in Texas in July 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 the 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 magic and it creates a win-win situation for all.