Toastmasters International reached New Zealand in 1962. Although there were few clubs in the early days, the popularity of Toastmasters rose quickly, and in less than ten years, Capital Toastmasters Club, one of Wellington’s earliest clubs, had reached the maximum capacity of forty members. It was clear that a new club needed to be formed, and as a number of members lived in, or near Tawa, it was inevitable that the club would be in the Tawa area.
David Knight, along with fellow Capital Toastmasters Club member, George Nicholson, formed a committee, to discuss the possibility of a club in Tawa. Geoff Saggart was appointed club president, and following a public meeting and advertising campaign, Tawa Toastmasters Club held its first club night at the Tawa Plunket Rooms on 1st November 1972. The club became chartered on 12 December 1972, with the requisite twenty members.
Since then, the club has changed names several times to reflect current club trends and the areas that the club services. To date, the club has been known as Tawa Toastmasters, Tawa Speakeasy, Kapi Mana Toastmasters, and Kapi-Mana@Tawa.
A token of appreciation to Paul for being a member of Tawa Toastmasters for 45 years. When Paul started the club members were mainly managers in the New Zealand Public Service. Formal clothes such as a suit and tie were worn at a meeting. We are grateful for the legacy that Paul and other club founders have given to us today.