Speakers

A Real-Life Underdog Story Filled with Humor and Hope
After a failed business in 1992, Darren LaCroix took the stage in a Boston comedy club and bombed miserably. It was horrible. The headliner that night told him to "keep his day job." Friends
told him that his dream of making people laugh for a living was crazy and stupid. He didn't listen.
He may have been born without a funny bone in his body, but Darren possessed the desire to
learn and the willingness to fail. These were the essentials for achieving his dream. This self-proclaimed
student of comedy is living proof that anything can be learned.
Less than nine years later, in 2001, Darren LaCroix outspoke 25,000 contestants from 14 countries
to become the World Champion of Public Speaking. He did it with a very funny speech. Some said
it was one of the best speeches in the history of the contest.
Since that victory, Darren travels the world demystifying the process of creating a powerful
presentation. His story has inspired audiences in 45 International cities including faraway places
like Australia, Singapore, Saudi Arabia, China, Oman, Malaysia, and Taiwan with his inspirational
journey from Chump to Champ. He is passionate about showing people that if you are a sponge
and have the right mentors, anything is possible.
Darren is currently the only speaker in the world who is a CSP (Certified Speaking Professional), an
AS (Accredited Speaker), and a World Champion of Public Speaking. Darren always stresses,
“Don’t go for the designations to get letters after your name; do it for the professional you will
become in the process.”
He is the co-host of Unforgettable Presentations podcast and also the coauthor for two books,
Laugh

Darren LaCroix, CSP, AS

A Real-Life Underdog Story Filled with Humor and Hope After a failed business in 1992, Darren LaCroix took the stage in a Boston comedy club and bombed miserably. It was horrible. The headliner that night told him to “keep his day job.” Friends told him that his dream of making people laugh for a living was crazy and stupid. He didn’t listen.

He may have been born without a funny bone in his body, but Darren possessed the desire to learn and the willingness to fail. These were the essentials for achieving his dream. This self-proclaimed student of comedy is living proof that anything can be learned. Less than nine years later, in 2001, Darren LaCroix outspoke 25,000 contestants from 14 countries to become the World Champion of Public Speaking. He did it with a very funny speech. Some said it was one of the best speeches in the history of the contest.

Since that victory, Darren travels the world demystifying the process of creating a powerful presentation. His story has inspired audiences in 45 International cities including faraway places like Australia, Singapore, Saudi Arabia, China, Oman, Malaysia, and Taiwan with his inspirational journey from Chump to Champ. He is passionate about showing people that if you are a sponge and have the right mentors, anything is possible.

Darren is currently the only speaker in the world who is a CSP (Certified Speaking Professional), an AS (Accredited Speaker), and a World Champion of Public Speaking. Darren always stresses, “Don’t go for the designations to get letters after your name; do it for the professional you will become in the process.”

He is the co-host of Unforgettable Presentations podcast and also the coauthor for two books, Laugh & Get Rich and the Speaker’s Edge. Through his live workshops and online programs, Darren works with presenters eager to learn what it takes to connect deeply with their audiences. As the founder of StageTimeUniversity.com he shows presenters how to be unforgettable.

Priya Cooper OAM hails from Perth. Born with cerebral palsy, Priya began swimming at a young age for therapy, and later realised her potential as a competitor. It was not until 1991, whilst competing at a school carnival, that she was approached to represent Western Australia. Priya competed for the first time in the National Wheelchair Games.
 Priya became one of Australia’s leading Paralympians, winning a staggering nine gold medals across three Paralympic Games. A multiple flag bearer, she is now a champion in raising awareness for people with disabilities to be involved in sport.
 Priya is currently Deputy Chair of WA Disability Services Commission and President of the WA Disabled Sporting Association.


Priya has a degree in Health Promotion and Journalism from Curtin University, and is very involved in public speaking. She
has addressed major corporate and government conferences and events, domestically and internationally.
One of her popular presentations, entitled ‘Success is A Choice’, reminds us that any dream, large or small, personal or
corporate, can come true with the strength of sheer determination.
In 2015, Priya was inducted into the Sports Australia Hall of Fame at the same ceremony as Ricky Ponting and Casey
Stoner.

Priya Cooper OAM

Priya Cooper OAM hails from Perth. Born with cerebral palsy, Priya began swimming at a young age for therapy, and later realised her potential as a competitor. It was not until 1991, whilst competing at a school carnival, that she was approached to represent Western Australia. Priya competed for the first time in the National Wheelchair Games.
Priya became one of Australia’s leading Paralympians, winning a staggering nine gold medals across three Paralympic Games. A multiple flag bearer, she is now a champion in raising awareness for people with disabilities to be involved in sport.
Priya is currently Deputy Chair of WA Disability Services Commission and President of the WA Disabled Sporting Association.

Priya has a degree in Health Promotion and Journalism from Curtin University, and is very involved in public speaking. She has addressed major corporate and government conferences and events, domestically and internationally. One of her popular presentations, entitled ‘Success is A Choice’, reminds us that any dream, large or small, personal or corporate, can come true with the strength of sheer determination. In 2015, Priya was inducted into the Sports Australia Hall of Fame at the same ceremony as Ricky Ponting and Casey Stoner.

Rod Bonsack hails from Ararat, Victoria. Raised in a rural town, Rod did all the things all “normal people” did as a kid, he played
sport, went to school, played more sport, did odd jobs after school and played more sport. At 17 Rod joined the Royal
Australian Air Force and proceeded upon a career in engineering; all very “normal”.

In 1987, Rod was involved in a unique aircraft accident that severed both of his legs above the knee. His recount of this time in
clarity is chilling in detail and delivered to selected audiences provides an illumination of what the vast majority of the
population take for granted.

In 1989, Rod with the help of friends and a library book on “how to swim” took the plunge into a swimming pool. From very
humble beginnings to his representing Australia at many events including the 1992 Barcelona and 1996 Atlanta Paralympic
Games. With the hours of long, hard training Rod went from success to success, winning gold medals and breaking national
records that he still currently holds.

Rod then set his sights on a career as a nationally recognised swimming coach firstly at Swan Hills Swimming Club and
presently at the Arena Swim Club. In his capacity Rod has provided inspiration to young people from ages 8 to 38 in learning
new skills, overcoming tragedy, obstacles and challenges of all descriptions. His driving goal is to “Make a Difference” to all he
meets. Rod is currently the Coaching Programs Coordinator at WA Sports Centre Trust.

Rod resides in Perth, WA with his wife Priya, daughter Olivia and sons Zachary and Harrison. As a true team Rod and Priya run a
global business helping others to achieve their dreams in all areas of life.

Rod is a dynamic motivational speaker. In his presentations, entitled ‘Going MaD’

Rod Bonsack ADM

Rod Bonsack hails from Ararat, Victoria. Raised in a rural town, Rod did all the things all “normal people” did as a kid, he played sport, went to school, played more sport, did odd jobs after school and played more sport. At 17 Rod joined the Royal Australian Air Force and proceeded upon a career in engineering; all very “normal”.

In 1987, Rod was involved in a unique aircraft accident that severed both of his legs above the knee. His recount of this time in clarity is chilling in detail and delivered to selected audiences provides an illumination of what the vast majority of the population take for granted.

In 1989, Rod with the help of friends and a library book on “how to swim” took the plunge into a swimming pool. From very humble beginnings to his representing Australia at many events including the 1992 Barcelona and 1996 Atlanta Paralympic Games. With the hours of long, hard training Rod went from success to success, winning gold medals and breaking national records that he still currently holds.

Rod then set his sights on a career as a nationally recognised swimming coach firstly at Swan Hills Swimming Club and presently at the Arena Swim Club. In his capacity Rod has provided inspiration to young people from ages 8 to 38 in learning new skills, overcoming tragedy, obstacles and challenges of all descriptions. His driving goal is to “Make a Difference” to all he meets. Rod is currently the Coaching Programs Coordinator at WA Sports Centre Trust.

Rod resides in Perth, WA with his wife Priya, daughter Olivia and sons Zachary and Harrison. As a true team Rod and Priya run a global business helping others to achieve their dreams in all areas of life.

Rod is a dynamic motivational speaker. In his presentations, entitled ‘Going MaD’ & ‘Success is a Choice’ he reminds us that any dream, large or small, personal or corporate, can come true with the strength of sheer determination.

International Director, Region 12
David Templeman, DTM, of Christchurch, New Zealand, is the owner and managing of D

David Templeman DTM

International Director, Region 12
David Templeman, DTM, of Christchurch, New Zealand, is the owner and managing of D&C Templeman Ltd., a horticulture business that he founded in 1987. Over the last 30 years, Templeman has grown his company from a small start-up into a limited liability company with three diversified divisions, ranging from production to end-product sales. “I am known as an industry leader in New Zealand, one who frequently initiates innovative cultivation methods and product trends,” he says. His responsibilities include setting forth the vision and strategy for the company, as well as overseeing day-to-day operations.

Templeman holds diplomas in sales, sales management, marketing, international marketing, and business studies. He is a past board member of the sales and marketing panel of the New Zealand Institute of Management. He has an extensive background in volunteer work, including volunteering at the Canterbury Working Dog Association, the New Zealand Flower Growers Association and the National Speakers Association.

A Toastmaster since 1995, Templeman is a member of his home club, the Bay Harbour Toastmasters Club, in Christchurch. He has held a number of high-profile leadership positions within Toastmasters and has attained the Distinguished Toastmaster designation—the highest level of educational achievement in the organization.

He says, “The communication and leadership skills I have developed at Toastmasters have given me the interpersonal skills and confidence to take my business to heights I never dreamed were possible.”

As a member of the Toastmasters International Board of Directors, Templeman is a “working ambassador” for the organization. He works with the Board to develop, support and modify the policies and procedures that guide Toastmasters International in fulfilling its mission.
Evaluation Master Class Title: Better Evaluations. Stronger clubs through better feedback
Keynote title: The Secret to influence
Workshop title: The Better Question to Ask


Darren Fleming is a Behavioural Scientist obsessed with decoding how and why people communicate the way they do. A former door-to-door vacuum cleaner salesman, a reformed telemarketer and retired sales rep, he has spent a career studying people in all kinds of situations where influencing an outcome has been the goal. He now takes this knowledge around the world helping his clients influence stakeholders, customers and industries. Darren is the author of 6 books including How to Write a 10-Minute Presentation in Under 2 minutes, More Sales More Profit and Don’t be a Dick.

Darren is one of Australia’s leading conference speakers, delivering meaningful presentations that engage, entertain and change you and your team members to understand and embrace new ways of thinking and working in the areas of …

Building influence
Customer service
Leadership
Engagement
Sales
Communication
Service
Performance

Darren Fleming DTM

Evaluation Master Class Title: Better Evaluations. Stronger clubs through better feedback
Keynote title: The Secret to influence
Workshop title: The Better Question to Ask
Darren Fleming is a Behavioural Scientist obsessed with decoding how and why people communicate the way they do. A former door-to-door vacuum cleaner salesman, a reformed telemarketer and retired sales rep, he has spent a career studying people in all kinds of situations where influencing an outcome has been the goal. He now takes this knowledge around the world helping his clients influence stakeholders, customers and industries. Darren is the author of 6 books including How to Write a 10-Minute Presentation in Under 2 minutes, More Sales More Profit and Don’t be a Dick.
Darren is one of Australia’s leading conference speakers, delivering meaningful presentations that engage, entertain and change you and your team members to understand and embrace new ways of thinking and working in the areas of …
  • Building influence
  • Customer service
  • Leadership
  • Engagement
  • Sales
  • Communication
  • Service
  • Performance
Graham is the 2018 winner of the Nevin Award, Professional Speakers Australia’s highest honour. He will share with you what’s really happening in these turbulent times of disorder and disruption. And, based on his years of experience and ongoing research, what it is that today’s discerning and demanding customers actually want. As a customer experience evangelist, he will show you how and what it takes to design and deliver a standout customer experience and develop a high-performance culture of service excellence.

Graham Harvey

Graham is the 2018 winner of the Nevin Award, Professional Speakers Australia’s highest honour. He will share with you what’s really happening in these turbulent times of disorder and disruption. And, based on his years of experience and ongoing research, what it is that today’s discerning and demanding customers actually want. As a customer experience evangelist, he will show you how and what it takes to design and deliver a standout customer experience and develop a high-performance culture of service excellence.
District 17 2020 Parlimentarian
Cherie Wallace loves procedures, rules, and processes. From her previous career in local government statutory
town planning to her current role in network operations management with Main Roads WA, it is very clear that
governance, legislation and rules are her passion. Cherie also understands that most people do not share her
passion!

A champion for community capacity building for over 20 years in Western Australia’s Goldfields, Cherie has been a
member of many organisations and has held Chair/President roles with Eastern Goldfields College Board,
Goldfields Women’s Health Care Centre, Inner Wheel and supporting leadership roles in many others.

Still relatively new to Toastmasters, Cherie has been Area Director, District Public Relations Manager and Club
Coach. Given her passion for rules, it is no surprise that she is the current District 17 Parliamentarian.

CEOs, Board Members, not-for-profit committee members or those aspiring to be, all need to understand how
decision making works at a meeting and often, a lack of confidence and knowledge around the protocols,
procedures and rules can make meetings boring at best and chaotic, frustrating and unproductive at worst.

Cherie is on a mission to help as many people as possible to navigate the often-confusing world of meeting
procedures. Cherie will demystify Parliamentary Procedures, share her passion for rules and show delegates How
Procedures Make the World a Better Place. This workshop is a “do not miss” for those who want to get the most
out of their next meeting.

Cherie Wallace

District 17 2020 Parlimentarian
Cherie Wallace loves procedures, rules, and processes. From her previous career in local government statutory town planning to her current role in network operations management with Main Roads WA, it is very clear that governance, legislation and rules are her passion. Cherie also understands that most people do not share her passion!

A champion for community capacity building for over 20 years in Western Australia’s Goldfields, Cherie has been a member of many organisations and has held Chair/President roles with Eastern Goldfields College Board, Goldfields Women’s Health Care Centre, Inner Wheel and supporting leadership roles in many others.

Still relatively new to Toastmasters, Cherie has been Area Director, District Public Relations Manager and Club Coach. Given her passion for rules, it is no surprise that she is the current District 17 Parliamentarian.

CEOs, Board Members, not-for-profit committee members or those aspiring to be, all need to understand how decision making works at a meeting and often, a lack of confidence and knowledge around the protocols, procedures and rules can make meetings boring at best and chaotic, frustrating and unproductive at worst.

Cherie is on a mission to help as many people as possible to navigate the often-confusing world of meeting procedures. Cherie will demystify Parliamentary Procedures, share her passion for rules and show delegates How Procedures Make the World a Better Place. This workshop is a “do not miss” for those who want to get the most out of their next meeting.

Immediate Past District 72 Director 
When Celina joined Toastmasters in 2012 it was her second time as a member. She had previously been a Toastmaster back in 2001/2002 joining to gain confidence and become a better speaker. She has been an Area Director twice, Division Director, Program Quality Director and was the District 72 Director for the first year after Reformation when Toastmasters separated into 2 Districts in New Zealand.

Celina finds the leadership roles extremely rewarding and valuable, as they provide stunning personal growth in terms of confidence in speaking. 

She says “I enjoy visiting clubs as each visit is a new place to test and utilise the skills I have gained through Toastmasters, sharing that knowledge with others. You start out your term for any Toastmaster Leadership role, feeling out of your depth; yet at the end of your term, you wish you could do it all again.” Toastmasters leadership is where I have gained most of my growth as a Speaker and as a Leader.

Toastmasters provides the perfect stimulation which fits in with the lifestyle Celina and her husband David have with growing flowers for the florist market, fruit produce and the challenges of raising their 4 boys aged 13-21. Come along and hear Celina share some of her stories and lessons from her
leadership journey from life and most especially Toastmasters.

Celina Templeman DTM

Immediate Past District 72 Director

When Celina joined Toastmasters in 2012 it was her second time as a member. She had previously been a Toastmaster back in 2001/2002 joining to gain confidence and become a better speaker. She has been an Area Director twice, Division Director, Program Quality Director and was the District 72 Director for the first year after Reformation when Toastmasters separated into 2 Districts in New Zealand.

Celina finds the leadership roles extremely rewarding and valuable, as they provide stunning personal growth in terms of confidence in speaking.

She says “I enjoy visiting clubs as each visit is a new place to test and utilise the skills I have gained through Toastmasters, sharing that knowledge with others. You start out your term for any Toastmaster Leadership role, feeling out of your depth; yet at the end of your term, you wish you could do it all again.” Toastmasters leadership is where I have gained most of my growth as a Speaker and as a Leader.

Toastmasters provides the perfect stimulation which fits in with the lifestyle Celina and her husband David have with growing flowers for the florist market, fruit produce and the challenges of raising their 4 boys aged 13-21. Come along and hear Celina share some of her stories and lessons from her leadership journey from life and most especially Toastmasters.