Buchheit award.

Pictured are, from left, Toastmasters Ross Wingard and Jeff Buchheit, this year’s recipient of the Earl Buchheit award.

ST. MARYS — The Elk County Toastmasters Club recently celebrated another year of fellowship and personal development with members and guests at their annual dinner meeting. The past year was a successful one for the organization, with many new members from Elk, Jefferson and Clearfield counties.

Toastmasters was officially founded in 1924. It rapidly became known as the premier public speaking and leadership organization, spreading its roots around the globe. The organization’s mission is to empower individuals to become more effective communicators and leaders.

Every year Elk County Toastmasters recognizes an outstanding member with the Earl Buchheit Award. The founder of the local club 25 years ago, Earl was steadfast in his determination to bring these benefits to the rural region he lived in. He is remembered by the profound impact he made on countless individuals whose lives he touched.

This year’s recipient, St. Marys resident Jeff Buchheit, has a very special connection to the award. Mr. Buchheit is the son of the late Earl Buchheit has been a member of Toastmasters since he was a teenager, and. He is an “Advanced Communicator Bronze,” having delivered twenty official speeches. Jeff was selected for the award in recognition of his dedication to the community and the local Toastmasters organization.

In accepting the award, Buchheit laughed and stated “I will never forget growing up and hearing a pin drop when I said the filler words “ah” or “um.” I knew immediately that I chose the wrong words and I got a talking to from my father.” He reminisced about his lifetime connection with the club and his greatest role model, his father. His acceptance words ended with “You have no idea what receiving this award means to me.”

Elk County Toastmasters meets on the first and third Thursdays of each month, at the Shiloh Presbyterian Church annex in downtown St. Marys at 7:15 p.m. Visitors are always welcome. For more information, visit Elk County Toastmasters on Facebook and on the web.

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