News from District Director, Vanessa King

Succession Planning – Already?!

Dear District 91 members and leaders,

Vanessa King
District Director

I know it feels like a strange time to start thinking about the next group of leaders. If you’re anything like me, you’ve been through a bit of a shock at being elected to your role and you’ve experienced some awe when you’ve thought about the task ahead. However, you’ve built relationships with mentors and friends, you’ve had some training and you start to feel like you know what you’re doing. Surely it’s not time to hand over the baton just yet?

Well, no, it’s not quite time yet. You do have another few months to serve your members, see your vision come to fruition and develop your skills in leadership and communication. However, it’s never too early to start thinking about who you can ask to step up. Who can you nurture and encourage by suggesting they stand for election as a club officer or district leader? They may need some time to think about your suggestion, ask questions and seek advice from people they respect and admire.


Clubs must hold their Annual General Meeting on the first meeting in May. Please send the results of your elections to your Area Directors and Toastmasters International so that they can invite your incoming  officers to Club Officer Training, which takes place from June 1st until August 31st.


Further information about Club elections and the roles and responsibilities of all club officers can be found in the Club Leadership Handbook, which you should have received soon after taking office. An online version is available


Area Director Elections

Elections for Area Directors in District 91 are to be conducted under specific guidelines which can be found on the District website: Please ensure your elections are conducted during your Area Contests. This is to ensure incoming Area Directors can attend and be recognised at District Conference on 6-7 May and so they can be invited to attend District Officer Training in June. Current Area and Division Directors will receive further training on this at District Officer Training on the 29th of January.

Your Legacy

As a district or club leader, you are making an important contribution to the success of our members. May I encourage you to consider writing a letter to your successor, describing some of the things you wished you had known when you took office and offering a word or two of encouragement. In my years of service to District 71 and 91, I have learned that I might not have felt ready to take up a particular role, but with the help and support of others around me, I grew into each role and realised my potential as a leader. I encourage you to be aware of those around you who could also develop their skills and abilities through taking on a leadership position in their Club or District. We all benefit from your service and dedication to excellence.

Wishing you a very Happy and Prosperous 2017.

Vanessa King, DTM

District Director, District 91 (UK South) 2016-2017

Last Updated on 7th October 2020 by Susan Rayner