Looking for a good speaker?

It's not always easy to come up with ideas week after week! If you need a speaker, listed below are some who have already presented at at least one club in our district. The best part is that each speaker comes with a recommendation from one of our clubs, and has already indicated a willingness to present to other clubs.

Add to the list!  If you have enjoyed a presentation from someone who was spoken to your club, please share that information with me so that we can include that speaker here. Be sure to indicate whether or not that speaker has shown a willingness to present to additional clubs.  Please include the:

  • Name and title of the speaker
  • Organization that the speaker represents
  • Subject of the topic
  • Is the speaker willing to present to other clubs?
For more information, contact Sue Peghiny at suef0503@gmail.com or John Marchiony at john.marchiony@gmail.com!


Joy Winkie Viola, Rotarian, Author of "From Schnitzel to Nockerln," Talk Title: "The Road Less Taken Is Often The Most Interesting!

A dynamic speaker, Joy is a global traveler who has slept with a Motmot, dined with Sheiks in Saudi Arabia, been face to face with a Polar Bear and eaten Whichetty Grub soup in Australia, She has just published a book of adventure and humor, From Schnitzel to Nockerln And Everything That Happened In Between which draws from her diaries in Kenya, Trinidad and Tobago, India, China, Saudi Arabia, The Galapagos Islands, Australia, Cuba, the Canadian Wilderness and Western United States.

An octogenarian, Joy is the oldest member of the Rotary Club of Weston and Wayland. Above right, Joy (right) autographed her book for Rotarian Patty MacNeil.

Still traveling, Joy stresses the importance of getting out of one’s comfort zone and not letting age deter you from pursuing your dreams. Contact Joy to speak to your Rotary Club or organization by email at ajviola@verizon.net or phone, 508-358-7222. Joy lives in Wayland, MA. 

See a preview message from Joy on YouTube

Sara Marks, Starting from Failure.
Sara Marks is a librarian at UMass Lowell. She has two masters degrees, has earned the title of Distinguished Toastmaster twice, and has published two novels, three short story collections, and three novelettes. Her third novel and fourth novelette come out this fall. She is a certified project manager and teaches workshops about writing, bullet journaling, and public speaking. She also failed out of college and had to return home in shame after four years at her first university. Today she’ll be talking about how that failure shaped her life and why she wouldn’t be the success she is today if she hadn’t been through the experience. You’ll understand why failure is a better teacher than success can ever be.
Sara can be reached at librarygurl@gmail.com.

Noj Zachariah.  Effective Communication
Noj earned his MBA, is a member of the International Association of Facilitators, and a member of the National Speakers Association. 
As you may have noticed, there haven’t been many effective conversations in the public domain for quite some time. Unfortunately, the lack of positive, public role models seems to have had an impact on the conversations we have within our personal and professional relationships.  The Priority 3 of the Rotary Strategic Plan is “Enhance Participant Engagement” and is described as “People of Action strive to understand the needs of others”. 
Noj shares some insights into how to have an effective conversation that may help us in our relationships with fellow Rotarians as well as with our relationships in our personal and professional lives. Noj can also talk about facilitation.  He can be reached at  nojzactm@gmail.com.

Andra Watkins  -  Why I Walked 444 Miles to Make a Memory
Featured in January 2017’s Rotarian Magazine, New York Times best-selling author Andra Watkins chose a crazy way to launch her debut novel. She's one of the only living persons to walk the 444-mile Natchez Trace as the pioneers did, and she did it with an unconventional wing-man, her 80-year-old father, a Dayton, TN native. Her life-changing adventure inspired her New York Times best-selling memoir Not Without My Father, which chronicles their experience. Andra is also the author of four other successful books, and is an active and celebrated Rotarian, having served in a number of leadership positions at Eastern South Carolina area clubs.  Andra is a Rotarian and has given this talk  to some of the surrounding clubs.  She can be reached through her publicist,  who like to return to this area,  Rhiannon D'Angelo  publicity@andrawatkins.com.

Scoliosis and Kyphosis - Amy Sbihli  has been a therapist for over 25 years.  The last 15 years, she has focused on non-operative treatment of scoliosis. Amy has traveled the world to learn various skills and methods, spoken at national and international conferences, educated other physical therapists about how to treat scoliosis and has helped local clients understand their body.  She loves most working with clients to teach them how to exercise with their condition through all ages and stages of life so that they can experience life at their highest level. (Note that  Amy has trained other physical therapists for these conditions. One of the patient highlighted recently in the Emerson Hospital news used this method.  Amy can be reached at amy@OrthopaedicsPlus.com)

Citizen's Cimate Lobby.  If your club would be interested in hearing about a solution to climate change, CCL is a great place to start.  Founded by Rotarian Marhall Saunders (click HERE to read about him on Rotary.org), CCL reflects many of Rotary's values and cooperative, collaborative ways of doing things.  Contact Sue Peghiny at suef0503@gmail.com to arrange a speaker.

Stephen Kirk will present about about honeybees and beekeeping.
Contact info: steve@esicomputing.com, 978-369-8499
Video available too!  https://vimeo.com/329097261

Phyllis Cohn, Director of the USO for New England
Contact information: pcohn@uso.org or 617-720-4949; also: www.uso.org/newengland.  Referred by Framingham, 11/2019

This workshop was designed to create a high performing team that blends perfectly with your company’s goals. You will be able to manage your team to their full potential and set goals your employees will buy into. Help take your team from good to Great.
Coach Ellie Marshall    Concord, MA  978-341-8860   cell 978-844-6379

A full-service public relations agency based in Boston which provides strategic public relations counsel and results driven communications programs. Alexandra Cohen (617) 536-8695

A college planning coach who also has a passion for making American history relevant. Paul wrote the book Gettysburg Lessons in the Digital Age. It contains 88 short stories to help answer “How can I benefit from what this person did at Gettysburg?
Paul resides in Norfolk, MA and can be contacted at ph@gettysburglessons.com

 The Bruce Freeman Rail Trail is sharing information about the Rail Trail, which opened in 2009 with the first 6.8 mile segment in Lowell, Chelmsford and Westford, and now expanding to Carlisle, Acton, Concord, Sudbury and Framingham.
Emily is the Secretary and Westford Board Member of the Friends of the Bruce Freeman Rail Trail, Inc. She can be reached at home (978) 692-6968 or on her cell (978)-884-4473 or www.brucefreemanrailtrail.org

Less than 2 years before scaling Africa’s tallest mountain, Gayle was hospitalized with a rare blood and bone marrow cancer that weakened her immune system. A long time Hudson, MA resident, gayle hopes to serve as an inspiration to those currently undergoing cancer treatment.
To read more about Gail’s climb, visit http://lifeafterleukemia.com/2017/04/the -answer-is-yes/.

The mission of Cultivate Care Farms is to operate, maintain, and expand Care Farming for humans and animals  to heal and grow therapeutically through mental health, wellness and community outreach programming. This non profit uses animals as a therapeutic tool for treating adults and adolescents dealing with an array of emotional, developmental and psychological challenges.
Located at 401 Main Street in Bolton, MA. They can be reached at (978) 440-0763

Rwandan Genocide Speaker: Carine Boggis
I recently had the pleasure of enjoying a speaker named Carine Boggis while attending a class at Harvard. She is a younger woman from Rwanda who at the age of eight experienced the genocide first hand. 

Her story is powerful and she's a compelling speaker focusing on restorative justice. I believe at this time in our country when there's so much turmoil around diversity, her story needs to be told. 
Dan Fenn, former aide to JFK
I'm reaching out to you to suggest you contact her and invite her to speak in your district and at your Rotary Club. She is in the Boston area – otherwise, I'd have her come to my club!

Recommended by: Corinne Cavanaugh
Member, Rotary Club of Seattle
Office: 206-802-9660
Cell: 425-232-9730

Positive Results Hypnosis: Bob Martel
Bob, who is a board-certified hypnotist at Positive Results Hypnosis in Holden, speaks on “Achieving Business Potential With Self-Hypnosis.”
What is hypnosis and why use it?
Hypnosis is a heightened sense of awareness. It is a habit change. An electric signal - a neuron in the brain - we become what we think about. We need to think differently to rewire the brain so that new thoughts take over the previous ones allowing the mind/body to work together. With hypnosis, you go into the future and pretend that by using a form of method acting with your imagination.  Hypnosis is also used by advertisers who want to get into our heads in order to get us to buy their products.
Benefits of hypnosis in everyday life: By using auto suggestions, it can improve athletic accomplishments and academic performance. People can stop stuttering by going back in time to when it began. Hypnosis can help golfers with their game, and is used with Major League Baseball and the National Basketball Association.
Benefits of hypnosis in business: Hypnosis can stop procrastination, as it is a symptom of something they are afraid of. It can help with delegation, as that is usually due to being afraid to trust someone. It can reduce stress so you can stay calm, relaxed, in control and keep greater focus. Using hypnosis at work can mean happier employees being more productive with fewer sick days, and salespeople’s confidence going up leading to more sales.
Bob Martel can be reached at bobmartel@comcast.net or 508-481-8383. His website is www.positiveresultshypnosis.com.
Recommended by: Cheryl Rosen
Member, Hudson Rotary Club
Office: 508-791-9283
Cell: 508-615-0339

Elevator-Pitch Tips: Andy Winig

Andy Winig is not only a member of the Needham Rotary Club, but also an exceptional speaker on the art of the "elevator pitch" and presentations! His recommendations are spot-on for both general business use as well as promoting Rotary! To learn more, click here.

Recommended by: Karen Wetmore
Member, Needham Rotary Club
Assistant Governor, District 7910
Office: 781-444-8161
Cell: 339-223-0632

Differentiation And Game-changing Simplicity: Stephen Melanson
Stephen Melanson is president of Melanson Consulting, which was founded in 2004. He is a management consultant, trainer, speaker, Verbal Branding expert, and the originator of the only “business simplicity” platform of its kind. In the concept of Verbal Branding and the simplicity platform, he explains the short attention span of people below age 40, and how to get your message down to the absolute, most convincing basic that can be imparted in five seconds or less – the attention span of the under-40-year-old.  As this is our primary target market for Rotary membership, the concept – and how to use it – is invaluable.
Melanson can be reached at 781-443-5051.

Federal Reserve Bank of Boston: Mary Burke
Mary Burke is a senior economist in the Research Department at the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston. She holds a Ph.D. in economics from Johns Hopkins University. Her primary research field is applied microeconomics, within which she has studied social-multiplier effects in the rise of obesity in the U.S., peer effects in education, and how individuals form inflation expectations, among other topics. Her research has been published in scholarly journals, including American Economic Review and Journal of Labor Economics. She also produces regular briefings on the New England economy for audiences both within and outside the Boston Fed.
Speaking arrangements may be made by contacting Darcy Saas at darcy.sass@bos.frb.org  or 617-973-3177.
Mary spoke at the Rotary Club of Needham.

Tanzania School Foundation - Christine Lott
We began the School of St. Nicholas to educate disadvantaged children who could not afford school fees. We accept bright children born into chronic poverty. Most of our children live with their single mothers or grandmother in a one-room rented hut with no internal plumbing, electricity or toilets. It is through education that we will end the cycle of poverty for both them and their families in the years to come.
We are a group of professionals who volunteer our time, talent and treasures to ensure our mission continues with the heartfelt compassion it began with. The Foundation was founded in 2008 by Christine Lott, who had a dream. She wanted to change the world. Today, she lives that dream; changing lives one child at a time.
Christine is former vice president in middle-office operations at Goldman Sachs, a position she held for more than 25 years. In 2007, she traveled to Tanzania on a volunteer mission using her vacation time. While there, she made a promise that would change her life forever. In 2009, she took on the role of full-time director at The Tanzania School Foundation. She now lives in Tanzania six months of the year; the other six months, Christine lives in Stoughton. She may be contacted through the foundation's website at www.tanzaniaschoolfoundation.org.

Massachusetts Law Reform Institute: Jean Sifleet
Jean Sifleet,  of the Rotary Club of Clinton, presented a program about the Massachusetts Law Reform Institute's Immigrant Family Community Education Program. MLRI  is a non-profit organization that works for social justice and economic opportunity for low-income people. MLRI is a statewide organization that has been around for more than 45 years.
MLRI is a “systemic-advocacy organization,” – which means it works on achieving lasting outcomes through legal action, advocacy, coalition building and information sharing. So, rather than representing individual clients - such as a local Legal Aid office does - MLRI works on large-scale legal initiatives and reforms that address the root problems.
Jean is working with MLRI as a volunteer – and trying to better inform the business community of the issues. This is an informational program – no politics. Jean, who welcomes the opportunity to speak to other Rotary clubs, may be contacted at 508-361-0916.

Biking Across the USA for the Pan Mass Challenge: Chris Spear
Chris Spear is an avid cyclist, has been riding the Pan Mass Challenge since 1989. He has biked over 100,000 miles in 18 countries and 26 states. When forced to work, he teaches engineers how to design and verify computer chips, and is the author of the bestselling nerd book, SystemVerilog for Verification. He was the president of the Rotary Club of Nashoba Valley for 1 1/4 years and is currently the treasurer.
He enjoys speaking to other Rotary clubs. If interested, contact Chris at chrisbspear@gmail.com.

Make Each Day Count: Tyke Crowley
To learn more about Make Each Day Count, visit www.makeeachdaycount.com. You may contact Tyke, a motivational speaker who is recommended by the Rotary Club of Littleton, at 978-660-8130.
Bolton Repair Cafe: Ray Pfau
Ray, a member of the Rotary Club of Nashoba Valley, is employed by the Oracle Corp.  Repair Cafes encourage sustainability, save people money and avoid people throwing things away and buying new ones. You may contact Ray, who is recommended as a speaker by the Rotary Club of Hudson, at ray.pfau@oracle.com.
Jeff's Place, Children's Bereavement Center Inc.
Located in Framingham, Jeff's Place facilitates healthy integration of loss for children, teens and their families by helping them feel connected with each other and less alone in their grief journey.
To arrange for a speaker, call 508-879-2800 or e-mail info@JeffsPlaceMetrowest.org.
How Pro Athletes Leave Sports and Enjoy The Game Of Life: Dave Ostrowsky
Dave, who lives in Natick and grew up in Newton, is the author of Game Over or Game On? How Pro Athletes Leave Sports and Enjoy the Game of Life.
Dave, who is recommended by Rotary Club of Concord, may be reached at 508-651-0897.

Lindsay Morand, great niece of E.B. White, who was author of "Charlotte's Web," and president of E.B. White Memorabilia Inc.
  • Subject: Life history of E.B. White
  • Rotary Club Presentations To Date: Montachusett Area (9/18/14); Fitchburg (9/23/14)
  • Contact: 978-697-7951; Lindsay@EBWhiteNiece.com.