Club Officers – An Overview of the Roles
This page provides a brief overview of the Club Executive Roles. It is not intended to be a complete guide: the best guide is the Club Leadership Handbook. This is normally sent to executive officers at the start of the Toastmasters year.
Here is a copy:
There is sometimes overlap in the roles, and the best system is that which works at the individual club. All executive roles can have a sub-committee, and this is a good way to identify, and prepare, a successor for the role.
What does the President do?
The President provides leadership for all members by setting an example of ‘best practice’ in terms of appearance, personal conduct, and following the guidelines as established by Toastmasters International.
The President sets the goal to make the club a Distinguished Club, and completes a Club Success Plan at the start of her/his term. The Club Success Plan template can be found in this manual:
The Club Success Plan is completed in conjunction with the other executive members. It is not sent anywhere beyond the Club Executive.
The President attends Club Officer Training, and encourages the other executive members to also attend.
The President attends Area Council Meetings. These are organised by the Area Director. The club president is a voting member of the council, as well as being eligible to vote for the next year’s incoming Area Director.
The President also attends District Council Meetings. The club president, along with the VPE, holds a vote at the District Council Meeting. If either of these officers are unable to attend, their proxy votes should be given to another active club member who will be in attendance.
The President usually becomes a signatory to the club bank account along with the Club Treasurer. Check with the previous president and treasurer as to what is required to change signatories for the bank account.
The President organises Club Executive meetings. It is recommended that these are held at least once every two months.
Ultimately, the ‘buck stops here’ with the President. If other executive members are not completing their roles, or there is a disruptive member at the club, it is up to the President to deal with the problem. Often Area Directors can provide good guidance for these issues.
What does the Vice President of Education (VPE) do?
The VPE organises the agenda for each meeting. This is often done through some kind of online software. The most common sites used are Easyspeak or FreeToastHost.
The VPE records member achievements and works with the President to make the club a Distinguished club.
The VPE organises the Club contests. There is a section on this website dedicated to club contests. It contains detailed information about how to conduct contests.
The VPE organises a mentor for new members.
The VPE attends Club Officer Training.
The VPE attends Area Council Meetings. These are organised by the Area Director. The VPE is a voting member of the council.
The VPE also attends District Council Meetings. The VPE, along with the club president, holds a vote at the District Council Meeting. If either of these officers are unable to attend, their proxy votes should be given to another active club member who will be in attendance.
What does the Vice President Membership (VPM) do?
The VPM is often the first contact for the club. They communicate with guests through the club website, and make them welcome at club meetings. Often, the VPM will allocate someone as a ‘buddy’ for the person when they come to the meeting. This means the guest will sit with an experienced member who will explain the club proceedings to them.
The VPM will give membership packs to guests. These packs are often comprised of a membership form, a copy of the Toastmasters magazine, and possibly a brochure that explains what a club meeting entails.
The VPM makes certain that the membership application form is up to date. Are the fees displayed correctly? Does it contain the Toastmasters Promise?
The VPM conducts an induction ceremony for new members.
The VPM attends Club Officer Training.
The VPM attends Area Council Meetings. These are organised by the Area Director. The VPM is a voting member of the council.
What does the Vice President Public Relations (VPPR) do?
The VPPR maintains the club website. The website can be either static (the information is accurate, but doesn’t regularly change) or can be constantly updated. At the very least, the website should have the date of the next meeting.
The VPPR greets guests and answers questions before and after the meeting.
The VPPR writes a meeting report/newsletter and distributes this to members. A good practice is to post the meeting report to the website, send it to members, and post it to the club’s Facebook page (if it has one).
There are many ways to promote a club. Many of them can be found at Toastmasters International, including the following manual:
What does the Secretary do?
The Secretary keeps minutes at Club Executive meetings. The secretary can also take minutes at club meetings. In this respect, the Secretary acts as the club historian, keeping track of changes such as rises in club fees etc.
Here is a blank template for minutes:
The Secretary is responsible for updating the Club Officer List at Toastmasters International. This means that when the club executive changes from one year to the next, or a new person takes over during the year, the Secretary is responsible for recording this change. This is done through the following link:
The Club may also have a club library. This might contain books about public speaking, DVDs etc. It is usually the Secretary who maintains this.
What does the Treasurer do?
The Treasurer is responsible for all financial matters at the club. They are a signatory to the club bank account, usually in conjunction with the President.
The Treasurer sends out reminder notices to the club members that their fees are due. These are normally sent up to six weeks before the due date.
The Treasurer attends club executive meetings, and presents a financial reports to the executive. They may also present a financial report to the club.
The Treasurer pays bills for the club such as rent, and also reimburses other members for out-of-pocket expenses.
What does the Sergeant at Arms (SAA) do?
The SAA arranges the room at the start of the meeting. This includes the seating, lectern, timing lights, and club banner.
The SAA often opens the meeting and does the housekeeping i.e. location of emergency exits, toilets etc. The SAA is able to set bright and lively tone to the meeting.
The SAA maintains club supplies e.g. coffee and tea, cups, etc.
The SAA packs up the equipment at the end of the meeting.
As previously stated, this is a brief summary of the roles. There are often other ‘nitty-gritty’ jobs that must be done along the way. In practice, some of the duties may be carried out by other members, or there may be sub-committees that assist the Executive officers.
Successful clubs are built by members working together to make the club environment a positive and supportive learning environment for all.