Distinguished Toastmaster

Dr. Trang Tran is an assistant professor in the College’s Marketing and Supply Chain Management Department. His research interests include branding, social media and service marketing, and he’s been published in numerous academic journals. Tran’s industry experience includes Vietnam Brewery Ltd., Mercedes-Benz Vietnam and Samsung Engineering. He brings to the College several accomplishments.

Now, he’s got another accomplishment to add under his belt: Distinguished Toastmaster (DTM). Tran received this recognition for his participation in the Toastmasters International Educational Program.

Toastmasters International is a nonprofit educational organization that teaches public speaking and leadership skills through a worldwide network of clubs. It took Tran 10 years to become DTM – the highest designation of Toastmasters, where only 1% of all Toastmasters ever achieve.

To accomplish this designation, each member must complete a communication track and a leadership track. In terms of the former, Tran completed 40 speech presentations, including a recent COVID-19 speech. He finished the leadership track by completing several projects where leadership qualities were expected. Tran’s last leadership project – High-Performance Leadership – had him serving as the contest master for the online Division J Contest of Toastmasters District 37.

What made Tran want to be a Distinguished Toastmaster? While visiting a Toastmaster club, Tran had a chance encounter with a husband and wife who always sat in the front row. Both were well-spoken and did so with confidence. When the husband spoke, “the whole room was inspired because not only did he speak professionally, he was very confident, as if he knew the questions ahead of time.” Tran wanted to know the man, and soon he was amazed to learn the man was blind.

“It was mind-blowing. He gave me confidence.”

Tran’s journey to becoming a Distinguished Toastmaster then began.

“Every one of us is born with talents, but we also have weaknesses,” said Tran. “If you’re scared of public speaking, Toastmasters is a great platform for you to practice.”

“Along the way, you’ll learn to become not only a better speaker but also a competent leader,” Tran added.

Tran is now serving as Toastmasters’ Division F Director, who oversees five areas and more than 20 clubs. Division F is one of six divisions of a new Toastmasters’ District 117 that is responsible for Eastern NC.

Tran presents a certificate to a Toastmasters contest participant.

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