Our club is run by a committee which is elected by our members and serves for 12 months from 1 July each year. Toastmasters specify the roles and responsibilities of each committee member.

This is our committee for 1 July 2017-30 June 2018:

Chris Ryder, President

Chris Ryder Shropshire Speakers President


Jenny Gater VPE - Committee MemberJenny Gater, Immediate Past President and Vice-President Education (VPE)

‘Why did I join ?  I saw an ad in the paper in January 2012. I was curious and thought why not give it a go? I’m still here making progress in all sorts of skills: listening, speaking, leadership so much and all in 2 hours 15 minutes.  Amazing what you can achieve when you have structure and you practice at keeping to time.  A really supportive friendly group willing to share tips to help you realise and evaluate goals.’


Jill Ming Vice-President Membership - Committee Member

Jill Ming, Vice-President Membership (VPM)

‘I run my own business and was attracted to Shropshire Speakers because of the opportunities it offered to improve my communication and listening skills. I love the structure of the Toastmasters program and the feedback and support I have had from my fellow club members.’


Kay Heald Vice-President Public Relations - Committee MemberKay Heald, Vice-President Public Relations (VPPR)

‘Public speaking has always been something outside my comfort zone, but at the start of 2017, I decided it was about time I conquer my fears. Shropshire Speakers was recommended to me as a public speaking club that was friendly, supportive and great value for money – it’s exactly that!’


Mags O'Brian Shropshire Speakers Committee Mags O’Brien, Secretary

‘I am a Life Coach and great communication is important.  I joined Shropshire Speakers to improve my public speaking.  I’ve gained so much more confidence and a great bunch of friends. I love it.’


Matt Hegarty Treasurer - Committee Member

Matt Hegarty, Club Treasurer

‘I wanted to improve my public speaking and leadership skills, and after attending Shropshire Speakers as a guest, I found that the Toastmasters meetings were a great informal way to improve these skills.  Shropshire Speakers is a very friendly and welcoming club and I’m sure that all members improve and learn from others, not matter what level they are currently at.’


Sher Khan, Sergeant-at-Arms


Past committee members (2016-2017)

Jessie Barstowjessie_barstow, Vice-President Public Relations (VPPR)

Talking is something we can often take for granted but creating compelling points and powerful imagery through well-constructed sentences is a real skill. My job involves turning complex concepts into an understandable narrative. For me, Toastmasters is a way to practise being more organised with my speaking and to give myself a chance to develop so that I can feel more confident and grow my business. It is also a great way to meet new people and to celebrate a diverse range of interests while working together to improve in a fun and supportive environment.

Tony Madeley, Club Treasurer

Past committee members (2015-2016)

Phil BradleyPhil Bradley, Vice-President Membership (VPM)

‘I joined Toastmasters I felt for the obvious reason, to improve my  speaking in public, little did I realise it has helped me with that and so much more. In over twenty years and trying various courses Toastmasters has given me what I actually need, an environment which allows me to develop in the right way.’

John Davies John Davies, Secretary




Past committee members (2014-2015)

samSam Warner, Past President and Vice-President Education (VPE)

‘I would never describe myself as a shrinking violet, and used to wear the mask of an actor when on stage performing or presenting. I wanted to learn how to be authentic and the real me when presenting to others. Shropshire Speakers has given me the space to practise in front of a warm friendly audience and now I’ve found a natural delivery style that I feel confident with and that helps me to convey my message clearly. The most useful thing for me has been the evaluations which encourage me to try new things out.’

Liz McCourt photoLiz McCourt, Vice-President Public Relations (VPPR)

‘I wanted to practice and improve my public speaking skills in a safe, friendly environment. I found this at Shropshire Speakers and so much more. Taking on different roles in a meeting has also increased my leadership skills.’

Kim Kelly

Kim Kelly, Club Treasurer

‘I joined Shropshire Speakers because when I worked for a multi-national company my manager told me that I was a terrible speaker, so I thought I would join and hopefully meet up with him one day and prove that I am no longer a terrible speaker.’

Past committee members (2013-2014)

paulPaul Brennan

‘Having been training people for over thirty years, I joined Toastmasters because I want to move into paid public speaking as another income stream.  Although there are clearly great similarities between presenting as a trainer and public speaking, the differences are well worth addressing. Toastmasters is helping me to achieve my aims in a warm and friendly environment where it feels safe to practise every aspect of public speaking among friends.’

Rebecca EvisonRebecca Evison

‘I was attracted to Toastmasters as it offered the opportunity of developing my public speaking skills in a safe environment, via a structured approach, to work towards achieving the Competent Communication Manual. At the same time leadership skills are developed by undertaking the projects in the Competent Leadership Manual. Performing speeches in public on a regular basis has increased my confidence and competence to speak in front of an audience. I have found the encouragement, feedback and support provided by the Toastmasters members invaluable in guiding my personal development. I highly recommend Toastmasters to help you become the inspirational speaker and competent leader you aspire to be.’