The JCR spoke to NCRA Board member Cindy Isaacsen, RPR, CRI, Shawnee, Kan., who succeeded in getting a proclamation in the Kansas state legislature for the last several years during Court Reporting & Captioning Week. She was also successful in securing one from the State Supreme Court one year as well. We asked her a few questions to help guide you through the process.
JCR | What office at the state level do you approach to request an official proclamation recognizing Court Reporting & Captioning Week?
CI | I have approached the governor and our county commissioners for proclamations. Our lobbyist helped us one year, but the other years we went on Google and searched for “State of Kansas Proclamation Request.” I sent them the verbiage that I got from the NCRA website about the history of court reporters and they did the rest. I did make contact with the secretary/staffer to come for a presentation.
JCR | How do you make the request? In person, in writing?
CI | I made the request through the form on the website. For the County Commissioner’s office, I contacted the county and spoke with the secretary for the chairman of the commission, and I also gave her the information from NCRA about our long history.
JCR | How soon should you make the request to ensure it happens in conjunction with the week?
CI | The sooner the better. I would send it in the beginning of January. County Commissioner’s office doesn’t take as long as the governor.
JCR | Should the party requesting the proclamation provide an actual proclamation, or does the office issuing it provide it?
CI | The governor’s office did all the paperwork, provided the proclamation, and made a few copies for us. The County Commissioner’s office prepared the proclamation and gave it to us during a County Commissioner’s meeting during Court Reporting & Captioning Week.
JCR | Is it appropriate to request a photo shoot of the proclamation being signed/presented?
CI | Absolutely. We have taken pictures with the governor and the county commissioner every time. They are politicians and they want to represent their constituents and the professions they hold any opportunity they can.
JCR | Are officials typically receptive to these types of requests?
CI | Very receptive, especially if you give them the language that you want and explain that it’s Court Reporting & Captioning Week.
JCR | Do you have any additional tips you’d like to share regarding securing an official proclamation?
CI | We attended the Board of County Commissioner’s meeting and provided realtime for the board, and it was very enlightening for them. The judge I work for went with me and talked about the importance of what we do and how proud he is of all court reporters in our county. If the governor cannot see you, or you’re short on time, just have them mail you the proclamation. I had no problems contacting their office and speaking to a staffer about making arrangements to go to the capitol for the presentation. It’s very quick, so don’t be offended if they don’t spend a lot of time with you.