Westchester County, NY – At 46, Kim Ortiz’s journey is a testament to personal growth and leadership. A finance professional for over 15 years, Ortiz, who resides in Westchester County, New York, has emerged as a prominent figure in the Toastmasters community.
Ortiz, a mother of two adult children, has always identified as an introvert, or more precisely, an ambivert. She admits to feeling overwhelmed in new environments or among unfamiliar faces. However, in comfortable settings or among like-minded individuals, Ortiz finds herself blossoming. It’s this journey from reticence to confidence that marks her remarkable story.
Ortiz’s transformation began in earnest in January 2022 when she challenged herself to join the local Hudson River Toastmasters, becoming a member the following month. Initially, her Toastmasters journey was marked by anxiety and emotional upheaval. Yet, the supportive environment of the club, coupled with invaluable feedback from seasoned members, gradually eased her fears.
A mere year into her Toastmasters experience, Ortiz was approached by Stella Umunna, the Division C Director, to become an Area Director. Despite initial doubts and a bout of imposter syndrome, Ortiz accepted the role. As she reflects, success in such positions is more about attitude than experience.
The role of an Area Director, as Ortiz explains, is multifaceted. It involves being a coach, a liaison, and a sounding board for clubs within the assigned area. It’s a role that stretches one beyond their comfort zone and provides a unique vantage point to observe and learn from the workings of different clubs.
Ortiz’s tenure as an Area Director has significantly honed her skills in leadership, motivation, and management. These skills have proven beneficial both in her personal and professional life.
Reflecting on her journey, Ortiz credits the Toastmasters community for her growth and for allowing her to see her potential. Her experience as an Area Director has not only been about self-improvement but also about empowering others to achieve their goals.
Concluding her reflection, Ortiz shares a quote from Henry Ford that has been a guiding principle in her life, “Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t – either way, you’re right.” This statement encapsulates her journey—a journey marked by overcoming self-doubt and embracing opportunities for growth and leadership.
Kim Ortiz’s story is one of inspiration, demonstrating how stepping out of one’s comfort zone and embracing new challenges can lead to profound personal and professional growth.