8 questions for the winner of the Kindle Fire 8

Amanda Marvin, RPR, CRC, from Tomahawk, Wis., won the drawing for a Kindle Fire 8 by renewing her membership in October. A new professional, Marvin graduated from court reporting school in 2015 and has been working as a captioner for nine months, currently doing remote CART work “for several different college classes including biology, statistics, psychology, criminal justice, and commercial irrigation.”

“CART captioning was always my ultimate goal, and I am so happy that with the help of the Certified Realtime Captioner certification, I was able to start my career helping others and doing what I wanted to do,” she says. “I continue my membership in NCRA because it has given me a big advantage in employment for companies who hire captioners. They consider the certification as a standard of professionalism and proof of the skills needed to do a quality job.”

The JCR reached out to Marvin with eight questions to get to know her a little better.

  1. What is your favorite thing about doing remote captioning?

My favorite thing about doing remote captioning is the fact that I can stay at home and have a flexible schedule that allows me to get my kids to school and their after-school activities.

  1. What is the most interesting thing you’ve learned while captioning for college classes?

I have learned that there are an enormous amount of biology terms that can be pronounced several different ways. I learn something new in that class every single day.

  1. What is your most memorable moment from court reporting school?

My most memorable moment from court reporting school was probably when I passed my first 225 test. School was a long, hard road, and that was a very exhilarating experience.

  1. What was the biggest challenge you’ve overcome so far as a working professional, and how did you do so?

One of my biggest challenges is numbers and fingerspelling. Practicing, along with writing a statistics course and fingerspelling pop-up biology terms, has made me a better overall writer.

  1. What do you always include in your “elevator pitch” when you tell people what you do for a living?

I tell them I do CART, which most people aren’t familiar with. So then I tell them that it’s captioning what the professor says for students who are deaf and hard of hearing. I also make sure to tell them how there are many more people needed in the field, so if they know anyone who may be interested to let them know about it.

  1. What is your favorite benefit of being an NCRA member?

My favorite benefit of being an NCRA member is reading JCRs and the great wealth of information that is included in them as well as being able to list my certifications on my résumé.

  1. Before I became one, I never knew that captioners …

… had to put so much research and prep into doing a good job.

  1. What is your dream reporting or captioning assignment?

I would love to caption somewhere locally so people can see and understand what I do for a living.

 

Haven’t renewed yet? Members can take advantage of Black Friday discounts and giveaways, including purchase of membership renewals. Mark your calendars for Nov. 24.

The value of membership

ValueofmembershipWhat are the primary reasons that court reporters and captioners become and stay members of NCRA? In many surveys, members have listed the JCR and the JCR Weekly, which keep them informed of the latest news in the profession; their hard-earned national certifications, which offer them ways to highlight their skills and professionalism; the many continuing education and networking opportunities available through NCRA; and many other benefits as reasons they join and renew their membership.

But for a more personal take, the JCR reached out to a few members who told us why they think belonging to NCRA is so important, not only for them, but for others as well.

“There is no better way to stay informed about reporting than through the JCR and attending conventions. Being a dues-paying member means you belong to the association that represents one of the great professions, ours, and interacts with another, the law,” said Patric Martin of Bethesda, Md., who joined when he first started reporting in 1978.

“I have always liked seeing what is going on in the profession and being able to read about issues and new things on the horizon. The best benefit, I believe, is the equipment and liability insurance. I have also started using Amplify for deep discounts at Staples. I’ve already saved more than $100 this year on paper, toner, and my regular office supplies,” said Elsa Jorgensen of Birmingham, Mich., who has been a participating member of NCRA since 2002 when she transitioned from student membership.

“It’s good to be aware of issues affecting reporters,” continues Jorgensen. “Even though there may be disagreement on certain things, we’re still stronger as a group than as individuals.”

“I’ve held membership with NCRA since the moment I found about it,” said Katherine Schilling, a student member who is based in San Jose, Calif. “When I first started my membership, I only had my eye on getting the monthly JCR magazine as part of it. The JCR has always held a special place in my heart because it was integral to my falling in love with the profession. I’ll never forget the first article I read, ‘A Day in the Life,’ when I found a stack of magazines in the classroom. After that, I was hooked. Just a year later, the annual NCRA Convention & Expo was coming to my backyard, San Francisco, and I learned what a benefit it is to be a student member so that I could get the student member registration rate.”

“The professional tips, ideas, and information are vital to keeping your career interesting and moving forward. Through the NCRA, we can learn from the best of the best,” said Jorgensen. “I look up to so many reporters and, because of them, I aspire to always be a better writer, a better professional, and a better representative of this amazing career.”

Martin, who works at the International Monetary Fund in Washington, D.C., recently paid for a number of student memberships so that financially conscious students who were interested in being part of NCRA could be involved.

“When a student gets out of school and is ready to become a working reporter, having a couple years of NCRA membership under their belt gives them a head start,” Martin says. “NCRA has ways to help, and unless you are a member you won’t be able to take advantage of them, the least of which is just reading the JCR and what working reporters and new reporters have to say. More than likely, you will encounter the same issues you will read about.”

“Nowadays, the value of my membership is most evident in the RPR tests,” says Schilling. “I am currently striving to pass the final leg of the RPR, and I now see my membership as giving me access to these tests several times a year. Looking back on it, it’s interesting to see how the value I’ve placed on my NCRA membership has evolved as I’ve progressed through my school career. I guess I could say that my NCRA membership has evolved with me.”

“Over my 38 years in the profession, I’ve let my membership and my certifications lapse. I’ve passed the RMR twice, as well as the CRR, but currently don’t hold those certifications,” said Martin. “There is no excuse, really, and I can only say life intervened. But, as you go forward, become a member, strive for certifications, and don’t let them go. They are golden, as is NCRA. I encountered a reporter from Boston, Mass., in New York City last year, who happened to be in town, but not for our fantastic convention. I couldn’t understand why she didn’t support the profession by simply being a member. And she was quite open on how well she was doing. So, why can’t you support the profession by being a member, I wondered. Her answer was, ‘They don’t need my support.’ That is one of the greatest fallacies ever uttered. Now more than ever, every single member counts.”

Renewing early could win you a prize

NCRA members who renew their 2016 memberships early will be automatically entered into drawings that could win them fun prizes. Members who renew in October will be eligible to win a Kindle Fire. Renewals received in November will be eligible to win a $100 Amazon gift card. The winners will also be announced in an upcoming issue of the JCR Weekly newsletter.

Don’t take the chance of missing out on the numerous benefits NCRA offers its members, including the latest in industry and association news delivered through the JCR, JCR Weekly, and JCR.com; a member resource center that offers a wide variety of do-it-yourself public relations tips and tools; compelling and high-quality educational content available through webinars as well as sessions presented at annual convention and other events; and more.

Click here to renew now!

Photo by: Erik Araujo. Used and adapted with permission via Creative Commons

NCRA membership dues also help drive advocacy efforts on behalf of the court reporting and captioning professions through legislative and regulatory representation at the federal and state levels, support legislative boot camps, assist court reporting schools in their quests to deliver high-quality educational programs, and help ensure the continued development of new products and services designed specifically to aid members in achieving professional success. And don’t forget that membership in NCRA also provides money saving opportunities through its affinity relationships with Staples, FedEx, and other vendors.

Renewing is easy and available online at NCRA.org. Members can expect to receive their membership card via email within approximately two weeks of renewing if they have a valid email address and have not previously opted out of Constant Contact email messaging.

Renewing your NCRA membership is also the perfect time to support the work and programs of NCRF, the philanthropic arm of NCRA. NCRF programs include the Veterans History Project, student scholarships and new professionals’ grants, and many other efforts that directly support and benefit the court reporting and captioning professions.

NCRA announces May Kindle Fire winner in membership drive

New members continued to join NCRA in record numbers in May 2015, driven in part by the chance to win a Kindle Fire. Sandra K. Smith, a captioner and participating NCRA member from Spring Grove, Ill., was randomly chosen from those who joined during the month to receive a new Kindle Fire.

Smith, who is a captioner with the National Captioning Institute, has worked in the court reporting field for 29 years, including as an official and a freelance reporter.

“I decided to reinstate my membership in NCRA because I feel I need to be more proactive in the field, and I wanted to take the new Certified Realtime Captioner exam,” Smith said. “I’ll also be attending the annual convention in New York City this year.”

NCRA will continue its new membership recruitment drive in June and will pick one final winner at the end of the month to receive a new Kindle Fire. To join NCRA and become eligible for a Kindle Fire drawing, visit NCRA.org/membership.

NCRA announces April Kindle Fire winner in membership drive

New members joined NCRA in record numbers in April 2015, driven in part by the chance to win a Kindle Fire. Tamara Braun, a freelance reporter and participating NCRA member from Hockley, Texas, was randomly picked from those who joined during the month to receive a new Kindle Fire.

Braun, who is affiliated with DepoTexas in Houston, has been a court reporter for 28 years and said she was very excited to win the drawing, especially since she added that she never wins anything.

“I have been an NCRA member in past years, but sadly, let my membership lapse because of other things going on in my life. In addition to joining NCRA, I am now a member of STAR and the Texas Court Reporter’s Association. So I’m on a roll now. Thank you so much. I am extremely glad I joined now,” Braun said.

NCRA will continue its new membership drive through May and June and will pick random winners each of these months to receive a new Kindle Fire. To join NCRA and become eligible for a Kindle Fire drawing, visit NCRA.org.

NCRA Kindle Fire winner announced

More prizes available for membership renewal

A record number of members have renewed their 2015 membership in October. These renewals were driven in part by a chance to win a Kindle Fire.

NCRA membership renewal Kindle Fire winner

The lucky winner is Michelle Wade of Huntington Beach, Calif. She has been a freelance reporter for 10 years after graduating from the South Coast College of Court Reporting. She keeps up her NCRA membership for several reasons: “Number one, of course, is it keeps me informed on all aspects of our industry: legislation, education, and technology. It’s great for resources. I have my E&O and equipment insurance through NCRA and just recently downloaded speed audio. Basically, NCRA makes my life a little easier. Thanks to everyone at the NCRA for all they do to support our industry.”

Renew before Dec. 1 and be entered to win

Members still have a chance to be rewarded for renewing before Dec. 1. NCRA will give away one Coach wristlet on Nov. 10, Nov. 17, Nov. 24, and Dec. 1. All members who have renewed before these dates will have their name entered into a drawing to win one of these four Coach wristlets.

NCRA membership cards

In an effort to embrace online technology, NCRA will only send electronic membership cards to members via email. Members can expect to receive their membership card within approximately two weeks of renewing if they have a valid email address and have not previously opted out of Constant Contact email messaging.

NCRA continues to work for its members

Online testing to begin in 2015 – In 2014, NCRA answered the call from members to provide more testing opportunities at a lower cost and on a more flexible schedule. By partnering with Realtime Learning Systems (myRealtimeCoach) and ProctorU, NCRA will begin offering members online testing for the RPR, RMR, CRR, CBC, and CCP skills tests in 2015.

Court Reporting Take Note: NCRA’s National Campaign – NCRA launched a national publicity campaign aimed at supporting the future of court reporting. Based on independently commissioned research by Ducker Worldwide, the Take Note campaign targets prospective court reporting students with five key messages: job security, earning potential, flexibility of schedule, the ability to help others, and the overwhelming need for 5,500 court reporters in the next five years.

More JCR content online – For the first-time ever, NCRA delivered nearly instantaneous information about the 2014 Annual Convention & Expo. News stories, session highlights, and photos were uploaded to TheJCR.com and complemented by NCRA’s social media outlets throughout the event.

New educational content at NCRA events – NCRA’s committees continue on the path of consistently improving the quality of educational sessions and networking opportunities offered at annual events such as NCRA’s TechCon, Firm Owners Executive Conference, Legal Video Conference, and Annual Convention & Expo. This has resulted in a steady rise in member satisfaction.

Increased online education opportunities – NCRA has expanded its first-class educational programming via webinars and e-seminars vetted to ensure they meet the needs of the marketplace. New online webinars and e-seminars were added each month for members to purchase, view, and earn CEUs.

NCRA’s annual Membership Phone-a-thon to take place this week

NCRA is holding its annual Membership Phone-a-thon March 13 -15. A total of eight seasoned court reporters from around the country with years of experience volunteering for the annual calling event will reach out to members who have not yet renewed their 2014 NCRA memberships. Members who need to renew may also renew online or call 800-272-6277.

Welcome to NCRA

The following are new NCRA reporter and associate members joining in June 2013. Members are listed by state or country. Endorser’s name, where available, appears in parentheses following the new member’s address.

New Participating and Registered Members

  • Kristie Deavours Muir, Birmingham, AL
  • Mark David Muir, Birmingham, AL
  • Loni L. Hunley, Apple Valley, CA
  • Kimberly A. Shaw, Bakersfield, CA
  • Janie Marie Espinoza, Fresno, CA
  • Rachael Marlene Pacheco, Lakewood, CA
  • Stacy A. Alcala, Riverside, CA
  • Vanessa Lizarraga-Felix, Riverside, CA
  • Angela J. Kuns, Roseville, CA
  • Christine Renee Jones, Ukiah, CA
  • Yvonne Soto, Whittier, CA
  • Ashley D. Mahe, RPR, Denver, CO
  • Michelle Elizabeth Pappas, Burlington, CT
  • Julia Flynn Cashman, New Haven, CT
  • Robert Hemenway, Wilmington, DE
  • Nancy Bryant, Dade City, FL
  • Elizabeth Lynn Drumm, RPR, Fort Lauderdale, FL
  • Tamara Snaith, Fort Walton Beach, FL
  • Mary A. Schumacher, Oviedo, FL
  • Blanche J. Dugas, Smyrna, GA
  • Robin Esterly Herber, Chicago, IL
  • Mary Jo D’Avola, St. Charles, IL
  • Sue Cowen, Fort Wayne, IN
  • Nancy L. Manganiello, Swampscott, MA
  • Angela McKinney, Gambrills, MD
  • Anne Marie Horner, Snow Hill, MD
  • Catherine M. Collier, Allen Park, MI
  • Elizabeth A. Ellsworth, Troutman, NC
  • Arlene Miller, Hackettstown, NJ
  • Aylette Gonzalez, Morganville, NJ
  • Terri M. Hughes, Las Vegas, NV
  • Jacqueline Nishi, Brooklyn, NY
  • Cindy Afanador, Hauppauge, NY
  • Carol Ellen Sudmann, Massapequa, NY
  • Francine Carroll, Staten Island, NY
  • Diana LaMattina, Staten Island, NY
  • Rita Persichetty-Racioppo, Staten Island, NY
  • Keithette M. Graft, RPR, Canal Winchester, OH
  • Michael R. Weatherly, Wewoka, OK
  • Ken A Regan, Dallas, PA
  • Jennifer M. Guy, RPR, Downingtown, PA
  • Melissa Lynn Clark, Greencastle, PA
  • Lora L. McDaniel, Charleston, SC
  • Toi Isabel, Arlington, TX
  • Beth Howard, Dallas, TX
  • Cantrece Anjou Addison, Richmond, TX
  • Jenna Bowley, Calgary, AB, Canada
  • New Associate Members
  • Viki McCrary, Irvine, CA
  • Kathlene Motome Genevay, Orange, CA
  • Marnie Levy, CLVS, Redondo Beach, CA
  • Andrea Weisberg, Boca Raton, FL (Annette M.
  • Montalvo, RDR)
  • Jeff Justice, Atlanta, GA
  • Katie Coulter, Louisville, KY (Richard L. Coulter)
  • Daniel Cayarga, Boston, MA (Gary R. Blando, CLVS)
  • Yvette Marie Perrodin, Houston, TX

New Associate Members

  • Viki McCrary, Irvine, CA
  • Kathlene Motome Genevay, Orange, CA
  • Marnie Levy, CLVS, Redondo Beach, CA
  • Andrea Weisberg, Boca Raton, FL (Annette M. Montalvo, RDR)
  • Jeff Justice, Atlanta, GA
  • Katie Coulter, Louisville, KY (Richard L. Coulter)
  • Daniel Cayarga, Boston, MA (Gary R. Blando, CLVS)
  • Yvette Marie Perrodin, Houston, TX

 

Welcome to NCRA

The following are new NCRA reporter and associate members joining in March 2013. Members are listed by state or country. Endorser’s name, where available, appears in parentheses following the new member’s address.

NEW PARTICIPATING AND REGISTERED MEMBERS

Nicole Lynn Paulk, Auburn, AL

Sheila R. Merrell, Menlo Park, CA

Cheryl A. Martin, Newbury Park, CA

Christina Suzanne Morton, Palm Desert, CA

Julissa Valdez, Walnut, CA

Lorraine L. Ramsey, Norwalk, CT

Tracy Lynn Hansen, Celebration, FL

Katiana Louis, Miami, FL

Annelese Bernard, Orlando, FL

Donna Fontaine, Orlando, FL

Debbie Rotruck Krick, Tallahassee, FL

Elizabeth Ann Taylor, Evansville, IN

Jennifer J. Nall, Louisville, KY

Heather Marie Chiaro, RPR, Baltimore, MD

Angel Berry, South Field, MI

Rhondi R. West, Anoka, MN

Brandi N. Bigalke, Minneapolis, MN

Ellen M. Godino, Hackettstown, NJ

Edie Lyn Casselberry, Mays Landing, NJ

Lydia Davidson, Los Lunas, NM

Eunice Patchen, Hartsdale, NY

Mary Jane Yaeger, Rochester, NY

Wendy Haehnle, Milford, OH

Sondra Black, Erie, PA

Melissa A. Smith, Levittown, PA

Delicia B. Struss, Houston, TX

Ann Fleming, Park City, UT

Mark K. Hovila, CM, Lake Forest Park, WA

NEW ASSOCIATE MEMBERS

Aurora Joslyn, Hollywood, FL

(Annette Montalvo, RMR)

Kelly Anne Bader, Blackwood, NJ

Christopher Lackner, CLVS, Brooklyn, NY

Deborah Darlene Self-Newman, Plattsburgh, NY

Judith Lynne Dodge, North Scituate, RI