a different sort of Toastmasters experience

Normally in a Toastmasters meeting everyone has a chance to say something. In addition to the speakers, evaluators, and table topics participants, the grammarian and ah counter (usually the same person in our club) gives his or her report, as does the timer.

ToastmastersIn a speech contest it’s very different. I have had the experience of running a speech contest, but only recently have I had the experience of judging a speech contest. More specifically, I was chief judge. In a speech contest the judges are given tally sheets and each category is worth a certain number of points, totaling a possible 100. After each speaker the judges are given one minute to tally up the points. When all the speeches are done the judges sequester themselves and compile the points. In larger clubs or at higher level venues there is an official counter. At our club contest as chief judge I was the counter. I tallied and compiled the rankings of the three judges and designated the third, second, and first place speakers. I wrote that down on an official ranking sheet and silently handed it to the contest chair, who announced the results.

Throughout the contest I said nothing. A very different Toastmasters experience.

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