London, Ont., community leader Michelle Baldwin wins 2022 Toastmasters Community & Leadership award

By: Toastmasters District 86
MISSISSAUGA, Ontario - April 27, 2022 - PRLog -- Community advocate and innovative problem solver Michelle Baldwin of London, Ont., received the 2022 Communications and Leadership award from Toastmasters District 86.

Former London city councillor Harold Usher nominated Baldwin, praising her as a "great communicator, leader, team builder, personnel developer and innovator" who has "made an exemplary contribution in community work in the City of London and surrounding areas." Usher earned the Distinguished Toastmasters (DTM) designation and is a member of the Thames Valley and London Toastmasters clubs.

Baldwin received the award at the 2022 Toastmasters District 86 convention in Mississauga on April 24, 2022.

Baldwin impressed Myrna Barthe, DTM, director 2021-2022 of Toastmasters District 86, representing clubs across central and southwestern Ontario and the Greater Toronto Area.

"The first thing I noticed about Michelle was her smile and extended hand in greeting; she invited you into her inner circle. Her eyes lit up when she talked about her organization's mandate. She was very passionate about the work she is doing and saw similarities with Toastmasters' mandate."

Toastmasters helps people build their personal and business self-confidence by growing public speaking skills and leadership skills.

Baldwin is Senior Advisor, Transformation, at Community Foundations of Canada, exploring societal transition and transformation at the intersection of equity, climate and economy. She is faculty in the Governance, Leadership, Ethics program at Huron University College in London. She is also vice-chair of the volunteer board of Atlohsa Family Healing Services.

Previously, Baldwin was Executive Director of Pillar Nonprofit Network in London.

She co-led the creation of a shared space for social innovation called Innovation Works, bringing together individuals, organizations, academic partners and entrepreneurs.

Baldwin says she's honoured to receive the Toastmasters Communication and leadership award. It highlights the importance of building a personal toolkit of communication and storytelling skills, which she says are crucial to success in empowering people to bring positive change to their communities.

Baldwin says that in today's times of divergent perspectives, practical, empathetic communication is critical in for-profit and community organizations.

"One of the communication threads that I think is important is radical empathy and how do you put yourself in the shoes of others, instead of just that initial reaction of 'How can they think that?'" she says.

"I think that's probably my biggest focus today is radical empathy, instead of thinking we need more communications. I think it's more about the emotional intelligence required at this moment."

About Toastmasters District 86

Toastmasters District 86 represents the heartland of Ontario, comprising 135 community and corporate clubs with more than 2,000 members. The district supports clubs from London in the southwest to Owen Sound in the north: Waterloo Region and Guelph; and Niagara, Hamilton and parts the GTA.

Nancy Movrin, Public Relations Manager
Source:Toastmasters District 86
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Location:Mississauga - Ontario - Canada
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