The Pathway to Distinguished Toastmaster

Congratulations to this years 2019 DTM Winners
  • Where will your Toastmasters path take you? Have you set goals? Do you remember your “Why” in Toastmasters? If your goal is to be a Distinguished Toastmaster, please read on . . .

    Honorable, Eminent, Notable—These are some ways that organizations describe those members who have reached the highest pinnacle of success. In Toastmasters, we call those people Distinguished Toastmasters (DTMs)—the highest award a Toastmaster can achieve. Webster’s dictionary defines distinguished as: successful, authoritative, and commanding great respect. Wouldn’t these qualities serve us each well in our daily lives?

    Distinguished Toastmasters are a rare breed. Less than one percent of all Toastmasters ever achieve that designation. In District 39 we have about 200 DTMs currently—quite a high proportion. These members have persisted in achieving all of their educational awards, every leadership goal, and have served the clubs and District by being officers, conducting speech crafts, and starting new clubs.

    Why become a Distinguished Toastmaster? What makes people strive for that mountain of achievement? There may be as many reasons as there are Distinguished Toastmasters. Some are life-long learners and want to continue learning. Others are focused on job promotions. Many continue to achieve goals to help their clubs be distinguished. Still others want to have the prestige of the initials, DTM, behind their names.

    Whatever the reason, achieving a DTM award is not the end of a Toastmaster’s career but the beginning of an advanced opportunity to apply what they have learned, to attain even higher levels of leadership and communication competency. A graduate degree, so to speak.

    Until June 2020 there are two exciting ways to attain the DTM designation: the Traditional or Legacy program and the Pathways program. Some have wondered if they will lose the credit they have already received in the Legacy program? The answer is no, but you will want to make sure you can complete all aspects toward your DTM prior to the end of the program. That means if you need to serve as a District officer, you will want to volunteer no later than the 2019-2020 Toastmasters year. If you need to start or coach a club, be sure to do it as soon as possible. Club Growth Director, Kristi Beres, DTM, would be thrilled to have your help.

    Are you ready to be a Distinguished Toastmaster? Check out the requirements below for the Distinguished Toastmaster award in both the Legacy and Pathways programs. Personally, I think the Pathways direction is a new and exciting test of our skills. You may already be closer than you think to achieving that plaque and medallion in the Legacy program or you may want to be one of the first people worldwide to become distinguished in Pathways. Yes, you can still earn the DTM award in Pathways, with slight changes, and it still represents the highest level of educational achievement in Toastmasters


    The new requirements are:

    1. Complete two unique learning paths.

    2. Serve as a club officer for 12 months. (If your club has six-month terms for officers, you can fulfill this requirement by serving as a club officer twice, but you don’t have to do it in consecutive terms.)

    3. Serve as a club mentor or coach.

    4. Serve as a club sponsor or conduct a Speechcraft or Youth Leadership program.

    5. Serve as a district officer for one year.

    Complete the DTM project. (Members are required to create and implement a project of their own design, in which they demonstrate the skills and expertise they have gained.)


    Ends June 2020

    Requirements are:

    1. Earn the Competent Communicator (CC) award.

    2. Earn the Competent Leader (CL) award

    3. Serve at least six months as a club officer

    4. Serve a complete one-year term as a district officer.

    5. Serve as a club sponsor, mentor or coach.

    6. Participate in the preparation of a Club Success Plan.

    7. Earn your Advanced Communicator Gold or Advanced Toastmaster Gold award.

    8. Earn your Advanced Leader Silver or Advanced Leader award.*

    *Please refer to each award application for a complete list of requirements.

For more details see the Communication and Leadership Tracks at Toastmasters International.