Speaker Coordinator


  • Create a schedule of speakers for the SWAN meetings.


  • The March meeting celebrates International Women’s Day (8th March). An IWD theme is selected by the IWD Committee for this day each year therefore choosing an appropriate speaker in keeping with the theme is a desirable goal, but not always possible.
  • July’s NAIDOC Week is celebrated by SWAN with an Indigenous guest speaker talking about Indigenous matters. This meeting should be publicised widely and local Indigenous groups invited and the media notified.
  • Other speakers are considered by keeping the Speaker Matrix in mind (provided in files, together with other information).
  • Some Speaker Coordinators prefer to book a year ahead, others to keep some spaces open to take advantage of opportunities. Members and Committee prefer the first option but leaving later meetings open for a time is also acceptable.
  • The Coordinator is requested to research and identify women involved in social justice spheres who would provide informative and engaging talks for the SWAN membership. Speakers can be local or from wider afield, and their area of interest and experience must correlate with the SWAN mission and focus.
  • The current Speaker Coordinator should hopefully have the March (following year) speaker arrangements underway prior to handover.


  • Contact potential speakers, give an overview of SWAN and the requirements of a SWAN speaker.  If they agree to speak or at least to consider speaking, post and/or email an invitation, brochure, and written list of requirements – see below.
  • Once the speaker confirms acceptance of the invitation:
    • Inform the Committee of the speaker’s details at the next committee meeting or by email if meeting a fair way off.
    • Arrange to meet with the speaker or have a phone conversation with her to discuss details of her presentation and if any AV facilities are needed, and to answer any questions they have about SWAN. This meeting/conversation could be with the Speaker Coordinator or the Facilitator or both of these. (Some experienced speakers do not wish to have a meeting, and are simply happy with a short telephone conversation with the Co-ordinator or Facilitator, and this is a matter of judgement of each case.)
    • Determine where the speaker’s profile information and a photograph should be sourced from for publicity purposes, and confirm permission to use both.
  • Write or email to confirm the speaker’s attendance using sample letter and explain how to get to the meeting place and parking information. Offer travel expenses and/or accommodation if they have a considerable distance to travel. (Offer of accommodation should be cleared with the committee first.) Accommodation could be in a member’s home or a motel.  Give your personal details for the speaker to make contact with you if necessary before the meeting or on the day. Mention the donation cheque for $200 and ask speaker to provide the name of a social justice organization of their choice for the cheque to be handed to the speaker on the day.
  • Provide the person responsible for the Flyer with details of where profile material and photo should be sourced from. Request that this person email the proposed flyer to you once designed. Send this on to the speaker with a request for them to approve or amend as desired. Once the confirmed flyer is available, send to people responsible for flyer, website, Facebook and media contact (or simply email to the whole committee).  This will need to be done well in advance of when the flyer is to be sent out, so that the brief details on the website and Facebook page can be updated as soon as the profile is approved.
  • Ensure a member is arranged to introduce the speaker (could be the Facilitator or the Speaker Coordinator) and a different member to thank them at the end of the question time and present them with the card and the flowers.
  • Unless the booking is recent, contact the speaker two weeks before the meeting and re-confirm their attendance. Remind them of any arrangements required with regard to travel costs or accommodation.
  • Meet the speaker at entry to the meeting place, introduce them to the facilitator and the person doing the introduction. Ensure they have someone to talk to if they wish. Accompany the speaker out after the meeting ends.
  • Send or email a letter of thanks after the meeting.

 List of meeting procedures on the Day (speaker needs to be notified):

  • That the speaker may attend from 9.30 and enjoy snacks and tea or coffee, but if later they must arrive by 10 a.m.
  • That the meeting will start with lighting of a candle, Acknowledgement of Country, notices and a chance for members to share Social Justice events and news.
  • That they will speak for about 30-40 minutes including Q & A. If necessary, Q & A may be extended with the approval of the meeting.
  • That they can present using AV, but that we will need the material early so we can check that the system will work. Preferably this would be prior to the Friday before the meeting, but at the latest by 9.30 on the day of the meeting.
  • That the speaker will be asked to contribute by drawing the raffle at the end of the talk.
  • Speaker Co-ordinator to take one or more photos suitable for Facebook and/or a newspaper article.
  • Please remember to ask for permission to use the speaker’s photo and comments for local media after the event.