PQD Kathy Hughes Headshot 2

District Director

Kathy Hughes, DTM

About Kathy

Contact: kathyhughes3@gmail.com


  • Founder’s District Director, 2023-2024
  • Founder’s District Program Quality Director, 2022-2023
  • Founder’s District Club Growth Director, 2021-2022

Member of:

  • Club 407
  • International Sommeliers
  • Le Gourmet Toastmasters
  • Pastime Pursuits
  • Talega Moms/Women Toastmasters
  • The Market Place Toastmasters
  • Toastmasters of Laguna Beach

Kathy Hughes joined Toastmasters in October of 2010 to follow up on a promise to a former boss that she would join a Toastmasters club to improve her presentation skills in customer meetings. It took 8 years to finally visit that first meeting. Since then, she has been a dedicated Toastmaster in multiple clubs and a District Leader since 2016. She has served as Distinguished Area Director, Division Director, Conference Chair, Club Retention Chair, Finance Manager, Club Extension Chair and Club Growth Director. Kathy received the Spirit of Excellence award from Founder’s District in October 2017. Toastmasters has given Kathy the courage and the confidence to pursue her goals without fear and to constantly give back to the organization that brought her that confidence.

Up until December of 2019, she was the Director of Research & Development Software Quality at Broadcom. Today, she is a happily retired mother of 3 adult children and 3 adorable grandchildren. In her spare time, Kathy is also a huge fan of competitive figure skating.

Program Quality Director

Jeanne Cassidy, DTM

About Jeanne

Email: pqd@foundersdistrict.org


  • Founder’s District Program Quality Director, 2023-2024
  • Founder’s District Area C2 Director, 2021-2022
  • Founder’s District Public Relations Manager, 1/2019-6/2020
  • Founder’s District Division G Governor, 2010-2011
  • Founder’s District Area G1 Governor, 2009-2010

Member of:

  • 2K Communicators
  • Club 407
  • OC Project Masters Toastmasters Club
  • Pastime Pursuits

Jeanne Cassidy joined Toastmasters in January 1992 after literally being pulled by her elbow into the company’s demonstration meeting. As a Coast Guard Reservist, full-time Logistics Engineering Manager, master’s program candidate and mother of four, weekly lunch meetings were the only time available for Toastmasters. It wasn’t until 2006 when she completed her military career, that she could devote more time to Toastmasters.

The Distinguished Toastmasters (DTMs) she met in those years inspired her to improve her presentation skills and work toward learning and practicing alternative (non-military) leadership styles.

Jeanne earned three DTMs in three different Toastmasters education programs; served as a President’s Distinguished Area Director (twice), President’s Distinguished Division Director, Conference Chair, Club Sponsor Chair, Contest Chair at all levels, Contest Chief Judge, contest judge, all functionary roles at various contests and the District’s Public Relations Manager. She received the District Director’s award from Founder’s District in 2016 for outstanding service and exceptional leadership.

Toastmasters has given Jeanne a license to laugh, the confidence to pursue her goals with joy and the excitement to share her experiences with others who want to transform their lives. As an adult educator, she works with students to become comfortable with computer skills and professional programs. She also volunteers for service dog organizations: Guide Dogs for the Blind and Pets for Vets.

Club Growth Director

Ken Spears, DTM

About Ken

Email: CGD@foundersdistrict.org


  • Founder’s District Club Growth Director, 2023-2024
  • Founder’s District Club Growth Director, 2020-2021

Member of:

  • Coastmasters Toastmasters Club
  • International Sommeliers
  • Possibilities Unlimited Club
  • San Clemente Toastmasters
  • Wine On Wednesday (Wow)

I am enjoying the leadership journey in Toastmasters. I am always excited when I see the positive results of the program. I am happy to be able to help change people’s lives for the better. Let’s all Uncork Happiness!

Public Relations Manager

Simone Nash, DTM

About Simone

Email: simonenash.tm@gmail.com


  • Founder’s District Public Relations Manager, 2023-2024
  • District 67 Speechcraft Chair, 2021-2023
  • District 67 Pathways Chair, 2019-2021
  • District 67 Pathways Guide, 2018-2019
  • District 67 District Director, 2018-2019
  • District 67 Program Quality Director, 2017-2018
  • District 67 Club Growth Director, 2016-2017

Member of:

  • Pastime Pursuits
  • Another 8 clubs in 4 other districts

As the current Founder’s District PR Manager, Simone is passionate about promoting the transformative powers of Toastmasters to the Orange County community. Through the VPPR learning labs, she aims to support our clubs in their promotional activities to attract more guests and new members. She is also proud to be a Toastmasters brand ambassador!

Simone Nash joined Toastmasters in April 2011 during the intermission of the very first meeting she attended. Her motive for joining Toastmasters was to become a more engaging speaker and enjoy public speaking rather than see it as ‘work.’ Over the years, Simone has indeed undergone a transformation in not only her communication style but also her leadership style, and her favorite thing now is delivering speeches and mentoring/coaching others.

Simone has completed 4 DTMs so far, 2 traditional system DTMs and 2 Pathways DTMs. Only the first DTM and the first Pathways DTM were planned achievements. The others were achieved through her passion for speeches, serving in various leadership roles, and working with others in team projects.

In 2022-2023, Simone served as VPE of Smedley Chapter One Advanced and as a member of the Founder’s District PR team. She was awarded the Spirit of Excellence award from Founder’s District in February 2023.  In 2023-2024, Simone is serving as VPE of Pastime Pursuits and as of November 2023, she is also a club coach for Smedley Chapter One.

Serving in leadership roles has taught her a lot about herself and this in turn has contributed to the ongoing transformation that continues to this day. With her 10th & 11th paths almost complete, she looks forward to continuing her Pathways learning experience into the new year of 2024!

Administration Manager

AJ Herran

About AJ

Email: ajherran.tm@gmail.com

Finance Manager

Lori Shapiro, DTM

About Lori

Email: lashapi@yahoo.com


  • Founder’s District Finance Manager, 2023-2024
  • Founder’s District Director, 2019-2020
  • Founder’s District Program Quality Director, 2018-2019
  • Founder’s District Club Growth Director, 2017-2018
Julie Murphy Headshot

Immediate Past District Director

Julie Murphy, DTM