Div A – Barbara Saph

Nominated Candidate for Division A Director

Candidate Statement

Why is Barbara Saph the right choice to be D91 Division A Director in 2021-22?
The range of experience, knowledge and skills that have been gained during my eight packed years as a Toastmaster include successfully working with clubs that need regeneration, new clubs that are looking for growth and clubs that are high achievers.

Spotting potential problems with a ‘helicopter’ view of the bigger picture enables me to strategically plan well in advance while also being flexible enough to deal with rapid unexpected changes. All the while focussing on those little details that make real differences to success.

Having been a part of Division A since it started in 2016 this role would be a superb opportunity to share all the benefits of Toastmasters with the diverse people of this division, helping them find their voices.  Division A is growing in stature with successes and recognition, my vision is to build on that success and in this ever-changing world to ensure that all the clubs are resilient, sustainable, and serve their members’ needs, while also seeking to develop viable new clubs.

This year has been incredibly challenging, and the challenges will continue as we transition either back to our traditional live format or move into the hybrid digital world. The team of Area Directors will have to support the clubs that need to rebuild, motivate others to innovate, and nurture possible new clubs. My range of experience and knowledge will be able to support and guide them in their roles.

I am currently a member of only 2 clubs: Hamwic Speakers, a large, vibrant, lively club, and Salisbury Speakers, a smaller club very focused on excellence; there have been plenty of opportunities to serve in committee roles many times over including President, VPE, Treasurer and VPM and a bit of PR as well. With a previous membership of Spinnaker Speakers too, my leadership skills have played a vital part in all three clubs achieving Distinguished status regularly.
Championing mentoring programs in all those clubs has been very important to me.

It was a massive honour to receive the DTM award 15 months ago; another huge buzz was being a Sponsor for Salisbury Speakers and helping them to charter. It was hard work though.

This year is busy: I was unexpectedly asked to serve as Area Director for A42, having previously been Area Director for A1, a role that I find so important to develop good relationships and trust with club teams. And there are still the club roles of VPE in both my clubs and Treasurer in one to do as well.

Having been a member of the District Council since 2017 I have accumulated a wide range of Toastmasters experience to bring to the role of Division Director

Yes, I do have a life outside of Toastmasters I am a self-employed Coach/MentoPsychotherapist/Trainer who likes research, genealogy, history, art, photography, nature, continuing to learn, personal growth and developing new skills.

I would graciously ask you to put your trust in me as the next Division A Director, thank you.

Why are you applying to become Division Director?

I have had quite a bit of Toastmasters experience now and I would like to stretch myself out of my comfort zone this year, to do something different and learn some new skills, so this seems to be the perfect opportunity. This next year is likely to continue to be challenging and I would like to help deal with those challenges.

What leadership roles have you had in Toastmasters so far and when did you serve in these roles?

Area A42 Director-  current year, Area A1 Director 2017-2018,
Club Sponsor – Salisbury Speakers 2017-18.
Club President – Hamwic 2016-17, Salisbury April 2019- July 2020, Spinnaker Speakers 2018-19
VPE- Hamwic 2018-current year, Salisbury Sept 2018 -current year, Spinnaker Speakers 2019-20
VPM – Hamwic Speakers 2015-16
Treasurer – Salisbury Speakers Feb 2018-current year
VPPR- Salisbury Current year, Spinnaker Dec 2018-June 2019
Secretary -Salisbury Jun 2018-Oct 2018

What have been your key accomplishments and what have you learnt from in past leadership roles?

Area Director:

Establishing good working relationships with club Presidents and supporting them to grow in their roles and in turn supporting their committee members and club members to develop their clubs.

Maintaining a good working relationship with Division Director to facilitate the flow of information from District to clubs and from clubs to District and to assist Division Director. Learning points:

Developing successful area teams so that area clubs can support each other.

Event organisation within voluntary groups.

Learning to plan in advance for events and to look at the bigger picture to develop strategies that clubs can use to be more successful. Other learning points this year, conflict resolution and delegation.

Club President:

Establishing good and repeatable club practices that make sure club members are getting what they need from their club; developing a club mentoring program which has been built on ever since. I learnt that building a good working committee team is vital to getting a club to grow and give its members a good club experience. I also learned that sometimes plans and strategies need to be flexible enough to be changed or adapted as needed and that this is not an indication of success or failure.


Helping my clubs to make a successful transition from the Legacy program to Pathways and helping members to achieve their education goals by helping them plan, setting them challenges and making sure they get lots of recognition when they are successful. Setting up Salisbury’s Zoom meetings and learning to get better at them.

What I have learnt is that information and understanding are vital: it is difficult to support anyone if you do not know the facts and understanding members’ needs: where they are when they arrive, where they want to get to and offering support and challenges as needed. Maintaining a good effective and fun meeting program that meets the needs of all the members needs time and input from other people and to let go of trying to do everything.


This is really an ongoing learning zone for me and achievements are learning to play with social media a lot more using photos and posts and getting Meetup accounts arranged. And finding people who are better at this than I am to help out

Achievements: getting the HSBC account sorted out and sending in the club charter form.

Learning points, I probably need to do this again at some stage as I am useless at it.

What are the main responsibilities of Division Directors that you are aware of?

Division Directors help the District develop the District Success Plan and they feed down information to their Area Directors. Organising Division contests and TLI’s.

Developing a Division Success Plan with their Area Directors and supporting the team of Area Directors to serve their clubs. Having a good overview of their Division.

Last Updated on 22nd June 2021 by Lucinda Brooks