Next month, we will conduct the second annual Court Reporting & Captioning week. The concept of this special week in February supports two of NCRA’s strategic objectives: awareness and education. While NCRA will flood available media with press releases and social media messaging in advance of and during Court Reporting &Captioning Week, the main idea is to equip you with the ability to take to the streets and build a positive perception of your profession within your communities and beyond.
Over the years, we have referred to the effort of engaging with members on the awareness front in different terms – ambassadorship, “stenadvocacy,” evangelism – but the idea always was the same. To varying degrees, we had difficulty connecting the dots for members and overcoming the formidable inertia that exists with any large group. But with Court Reporting & Captioning Week, we struck the right chord.
For the second rendition, though, we don’t want to take anything for granted. We want to do everything we did a year ago — and then a lot more.
- We want you to go to a local high school and deliver a presentation about court reporting to students.
- We want you to use this opportunity to host an open house for your clients and showcase the services that they should know more about.
- We want you to think of new and innovative ways to send messaging to anyone who should know more about court reporting and captioning.
As you do this, as I said, we’ll be doing our part, as will state associations, court reporting schools, and court reporting vendors. A year ago, we saw stories on television about court reporting and captioning, we saw newspaper stories, we saw recognition of Court Reporting & Captioning Week on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives and in state legislatures across the United States. We can only expect more than that if we do more than we did last year.
In the coming weeks, you will see a growing array of tools related to Court Reporting & Captioning Week appear on the NCRA website. Stay tuned to the JCR Weekly each Wednesday for more information where we’ll guide you to available resources and pepper you with ideas. And when you have new ideas, please write them down and share them on the NCRA Facebook page, so that we all can benefit from the collective wisdom and creativity of the full membership.
When we first conceived of Court Reporting & Captioning Week, we talked about creating a perfect storm of publicity during a seven-day period and asking every member to do at least one thing to help. We’re of course happy if you were able to do more than that, but let’s start with that: one thing. And then tell us what you did.
I will tell you that I intend to launch the week in the same fashion I did a year ago, with a bacon-wrapped meatloaf on Sunday, Feb. 16, and then I look forward to watching what ensues from the entire court reporting community in the days that follow.
Jim Cudahy, CAE, is Executive Director and CEO of NCRA.