I met Sara for the first time when she visited Club 219 about 6 years ago. Sara was a resident at the apartment complex where our club meets every Tuesday at 12 noon.
I asked Sara, "What would you like to get out of this club?" She replied, "I want to be an inspirational speaker one day." I asked, "Have you ever given an inspirational speech before?" Sara said, "No, but I want to learn." I saw a bright gleam in her eyes and felt a deep passion in her voice, and that was the beginning of our friendship that continued to this day. Sara joined our club in 2009 and immediately began working on her communication and leadership manual projects. She competed in club, area and division contests and later won 2nd place at the Division F International Speech contest in 2011. She served in various club officer positions and was elected club president in 2012. Sara led the club to President's Distinguished status.
Sara later had a new passion to summit Mt. Everest after being challenged by an instructor at Landmark to do something far beyond herself. But she did not give up on her passion to be an inspirational speaker. Sara moved up the communication and leadership track while doing various weight lifting and dragging exercises regularly to prepare for summiting Mt. Everest. She climbed 7 lesser mountains from Mt. Whitney to Mt. Chu Oyo before attempting to climb Mt. Everest.
Sara's commitment and persistence over these past 6 years is truly an exemplary model of the motto of a Distinguished Member. When her attempt to summit Mt. Everest was brutally shattered by the earthquake that killed many climbers on Mt. Everest that day, Sara decided use the bad things that happened to her for good. She reached out to one organization after another sharing her terrifying experience to raise awareness of the plight of the people in Nepal. She organized various events to raise money to rebuild a school for the neglected and abused Nepali girls built by an organization, Empower Nepali Girls. As a result, her passion to be an inspirational speaker was realized. Sara is a living testimony of how the Toastmaster program can empower you to pursue your passion and realize your dreams.
Sara did not make it to the top of Mt. Everest yet, but she is now working on her second DTM, giving inspirational speeches on a regular basis to various organizations while planning her next attempt at summiting Mt. Everest. Sara is realizing her dreams by helping and inspiring others to realize their dreams.