Go behind the scenes with a proofreader

jcr-publications_high-resOn Feb. 16, JD Supra Business Advisor posted a blog by Darlene Williams from Planet Depos in honor of Court Reporting & Captioning Week that showcases proofreader Jean Hammond.

Read more.

Firm Owners Executive Conference combines fun and learning for attendees

More than 180 attendees and guests networked between educational sessions at the 2017 NCRA Firm Owners Executive Conference held Feb. 12-14 in Tucson, Ariz.

080_resizedKeynote speaker Susan Solovic took to the stage and shared with attendees her insights and secrets to becoming a successful entrepreneur. Solovic, an Internet pioneer who cofounded and grew one of the first video-based Internet sites to a million-dollar-plus entity, is also an award-winning serial entrepreneur and best-selling author. Learn more about Solovic’s presentation.

Also on the bill was Laurie Forster, one of America’s leading wine experts and author of the award-winning book The Sipping Point: A Crash Course in Wine. Forster hosted a wildly successful fun-filled networking session where attendees identified wines and teamed up to develop their own wine and brand.


Attendees present their wine brand during the “Name That Wine” session

Multi-time attendee Anthony Krause, vice president of McCorkle Litigation Services in Chicago, Ill., said he enjoyed keynote speaker Solovic as well as the networking opportunities that were available.

“I have attended perhaps many Firm Owner events. I would tell someone thinking of attending to be sure and attend the main seminars as well as all of the networking events,” he said.

Other highlights of the event included a presentation by Mike Nelson, NCRA CEO and Executive Director, of the findings from NCRA’s 2016 Firm Owners Economic Benchmarking Survey, and two sessions led by Nancy Varallo, RDR, CRR, owner of The Varallo Group, Worcester, Mass., that addressed “Mobilizing Your Dreams: A 21st Century Strategic Plan” and “Journey to the Center of a Client Decision.”

Firm Owners attendees participate in the poker run

Firm Owners attendees participate in the poker run

“The networking opportunities were great. I also learned a lot of good marketing strategies, which I am already employing in my business,” said first-time attendee Beth Fein, CLVS, with BWA Video in Houston, Texas.

Other sessions addressed understanding financial statements and competing successfully. Attendees also participated in a poker-run nature-hike networking event and a special Valentine’s Day closing reception.

The 2018 NCRA Firm Owners Executive Conference is scheduled for Jan.28-30 in St. Petersburg, Fla., at the Loews Don CeSar Hotel.

NCRA announces nominees for 2017 JCR Awards

JCRawardsNCRA has announced the JCR Award nominees for 2017. The stories of the finalists will be published as featured articles in the March JCR.

The awards were conceived as a way to recognize and highlight the exemplary professionalism, community service, and business practices of NCRA members. Nominations overall were reviewed for components that included compelling stories that bring to life innovative, successful business strategies used to help overcome obstacles that have hindered professional growth. A new category was introduced for 2017 that recognized efforts associated with NCRA’s Court Reporting & Captioning Week.

Awards will be given in the following categories: marketing and consumer service, leadership and team-building, use of technology, community outreach, and service in a nonlegal setting. Both individuals and organizations could be nominated. In addition to nominations for categories listed above, a firm or an individual who has displayed excellence in more than one category will be honored with an overall “best of the year” award.

Nominees for the 2017 JCR Awards are as follows:

Leadership, teambuilding, and mentoring:

  • Robin Nodland, RDR, CRR, Portland, Ore.
  • Karen Ruud, CRI, Madison, Wis.
  • Doreen Sutton, RPR, Scottsdale, Ariz.
  • Erminia Uviedo, RDR, CRR, San Antonio, Texas

This category focuses on those who have created programs that encouraged others to build skills or work together to complete a project. Providing a realtime program for employees to better place a firm as a realtime leader or a court reporting program that aids students in creating connections within a broader court reporting and captioning community would be two examples.

Use of technology: 

  • Jen Krueger, RMR, CRI, CPE, Parma, Ohio
  • Jay Vettickal, CRI, Hobart, Ind.

This category highlights innovative thinking by members who use technology to better market their skills or were able to effectively and efficiently use technology to create a better product for a client. For instance, an effective public relations plan using social media or the effective use of technology in the courthouse would fit this category.

Community outreach:

  • Aimee Goldberg, Minneapolis, Minn.
  • Doreen Sutton, RPR, Scottsdale, Ariz.

This category offers members the chance to show their philanthropic work. Two examples include organizing a Veterans History Project Day or raising money for a charity.

Service in a nonlegal setting: 

  • Deanna Baker, RMR, Flagstaff, Ariz.

This category offers NCRA members the chance to offer best practices for a nonlegal setting, including remote CART, captioning, or another new initiative.

Court Reporting & Captioning Week (2016) initiative:

  • Cuyahoga Community College Captioning and Court Reporting Program, Parma, Ohio
  • Los Angeles County Court Reporters Association, Los Angeles, Calif.
  • Doreen Sutton, RPR, Scottsdale, Ariz.
  • Erminia Uviedo, RDR, CRR, San Antonio, Texas

This category includes any event, promotion, or other activity that occurred during or in conjunction with NCRA’s 2016 Court Reporting & Captioning Week, Feb. 14-20.

NCRA wishes each of the nominees the best of luck and thanks them or their nominators for their participation in the 2017 JCR Awards.

Five minutes with Realtime Champ Dee Boenau

Deanna Boenau_2016 Realtime ContestThe JCR reached out to Dee Boenau, RDR, CRR, CRC, a broadcast captioner in Sarasota, Fla., about her Realtime Contest win, the importance of realtime, practice tips, and using the spotlight to promote the profession.

What appealed to you about competing in the speed and realtime contests?

I’ve always competed just as a way to see how my skills have improved. It’s fun and exciting to see how the changes I have made to my theory over the years have increased my speed and accuracy.

 Do you have a preference on which one you would prefer to win?

I like to win the Realtime Contest because realtime writing is what I do, and I believe realtime translation is the lifeblood of court reporting and captioning. However, I would not mind adding the prestigious title of Speed Contest Champion to my achievements and having my name added to the historical list of greats in our profession.

 How do you find the two contests different?

I write both contests in the mind-set of realtime. There really is no difference to me other than the faster speed and the opportunity for editing in the Speed Contest. Nerves can be devastating, though, in the Realtime Contest. If the nerves creep in during the Speed Contest, I know I have a chance to edit it. I guess I am a little harder on myself just before the Realtime Contest because of nerves.

Have you been practicing for the upcoming contests?

I do practice close to the time of the contests. I simply don’t have the time to practice year-round. I prefer to actively use my skills in the real world and to further enhance my ability to make a living. Whether I am reporting or captioning, I always review my work. I can’t stress enough to captioners the importance of reading one’s work and looking up what one missed. Over the years, too, practice would be boring to me because it was always the same dictation tapes. Now there are new programs on the market, like ev360 Ultimate, that take practicing to a whole different level and make it fun, too. The last couple of years I’ve been practicing more because of the program.

What advice would you have for a person who has never been in a speed contest before? How can they get started?

Just do it. Sign up and jump right in. The contests may humble you and inspire you at the same time. You could be the next Jeffrey Weigl, RMR, CRR, CRC, or Julianne LaBadia,  RDR, CRR, CRC.

You’ve received quite a lot of coverage based on your wins in the past few years. What has that been like? Do you have any advice for other reporters or captioners who find themselves in the limelight?

When I found myself in the limelight, I spoke with passion. I love writing on the steno machine; it is my favorite piece of technology. Without the steno machine, I could not do my job as a reporter making a record and as a captioner providing communication accessibility to thousands of people. You can’t go wrong talking about what you love because it all comes so naturally. When I first won the Realtime Contest, I was thrilled with the machine I was using and enjoyed talking about it and the technology behind it. When a person speaks with such passion about his or her profession and the advancing technology, it can only inspire others to inquire about court reporting or captioning.

Is there any advice you can give to other NCRA members on how each of us can be an advocate for our profession?

Be the best you can be. Stand up for what is right. Keep the professional image alive.

Any questions we missed or should have asked?

I want to thank NCRA and the Contests Committee for continuing to support the contests. It is a huge undertaking and a sacrifice of convention time for the committee members. I’ve heard that they are often grading papers when people are returning from late-night festivities. Admittedly, the contests are a large part of the reason why I’ve attended the convention 17 years in a row. Yes, I learn from the seminars, but the contests give the convention the wow factor. Thank you, NCRA, past sponsors, and any future sponsors!

Read our interview with Speed Champ Jeff Weigl.

Pittsburgh’s Constance Lee & Company debuts mobile deposition capability

jcr-publications_high-resThe Military News reported on Feb. 14 that Constance Lee & Company, Pittsburgh, Pa., is rolling out mobile deposition offerings to capitalize on available technology and provide seamless deposition assistance to clients.

Read more.

Is your information for the 2017-2018 NCRA Sourcebook correct?

By Jennifer Late

If you don’t know the answer to this question, it’s time to check by visiting NCRAsourcebook.com.

If you have moved, started a new job, or if you just haven’t looked at the new NCRAsourcebook.com site recently, it’s time to update your print and online NCRA Sourcebook profiles.

NCRA provides both the print and online NCRA Sourcebook to help lawyers, paralegals, court reporting and captioning firms, members of the deaf and hard-of-hearing community, and other court reporters find NCRA members. Don’t be left out of these important resources. Update your profiles today!

The deadline to update your profile for the inclusion in the print NCRA Sourcebook is April 15. You can update your online NCRA Sourcebook listing anytime you have a change in circumstance.

Instructions for updating your profiles

  1. Log in to the member access area of the home page on NCRA.org.

The “My Main Profile” tab is your information for the print 2017–2018 NCRA Sourcebook. And the “My Sourcebook Listings” tab is your information for the online NCRA Sourcebook. For many members, this information may be identical, but some members may request that different data be shown in these areas. If you forgot your password, click on the “Forgot/Reset Password” link on NCRA.org and follow the instructions.

  1. Confirm your information for the print 2017–2018 NCRA Sourcebook.

The print 2017–2018 NCRA Sourcebook will go into production in just a few short weeks. Select the “My Main Profile” button to view the information that will appear in your basic print listing if you do not make changes by April 15.

If any of your print 2017–2018 NCRA Sourcebook information needs to be updated, please:

  1. Make your necessary changes
  2. Click “Save” at the bottom of the screen to save your updates

If you wish to purchase multiple listings, display advertising, Buyer’s Guide advertising, and Premium or Premium Plus firm directory listings for the print 2017–2018 NCRA Sourcebook, please contact barmentrout@ncra.org by May 1.

  1. Confirm your information for the online NCRA Sourcebook.

The online NCRA Sourcebook is available 24/7 for updating. Select the “My Sourcebook Listings” button to view the information that will appear in your basic online listing unless you make changes.

If any of your online NCRA Sourcebook information needs to be updated, please:

  1. Choose “Update”
  2. Make your necessary changes
  3. Click “Save” at the bottom of the screen to save your updates

If you wish to purchase a Premium or Premium Plus listing for the online NCRA Sourcebook, choose “View/Upgrade” in step 1 above.

A few last notes about updating your Sourcebook listings.

Your credentials can only be updated by NCRA staff and state credentials are not listed in the NCRA Sourcebook. For accuracy and security purposes, we cannot accept verbal changes over the phone. If you have questions about your information, please email sourcebook@ncra.org.

Jennifer Late is NCRA’s Assistant Director of Membership. She can be reached at jlate@ncra.org.

Esquire enhances remote deposition technology

jcr-publications_high-resEsquire Deposition Solutions, based in Atlanta, Ga., announced in a press release issued Feb. 7 that it has significantly enhanced the technology it uses in all of its offices to support the growing demand for remote depositions services.

Read more.

Five crucial considerations for your videoconference deposition

jcr-publications_high-resA blog published Feb. 3 by JD Supra Business Advisor offers several tips to help ensure a successful videoconference deposition. Suzanne Quinson from Plane Depos wrote the blog.

Read more.

Oklahoma court reporting firm launches education and advocacy effort

jcr-publications_high-resIn a press release issued Feb. 10, NCRA member Ginger Baze, owner of Steno Services in Hugo, Okla., announced that her firm is launching an outreach and education campaign for National Court Reporting & Captioning Week.

Read more.

Herder & Associates to help showcase unique career

jcr-publications_high-resHerder & Associates and the Arizona Court Reporters Association will honor the court reporting and captioning professions at a mixer at being held during Court Reporting & Captioning Week, according to a press release issued Feb. 8. Members of the profession are encouraged to attend and share stories on the importance of reporting and captioning, and to bring people up to date on market developments.

Read more.