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How and why these NCRA members named their steno machines

"Bonnie"

What’s in a name? Surely a special story or meaning, an inside joke or dedication to a friend, family member, or even in tribute to a loyal companion. With so many potential stories, the JCR reached out to members who replied positively to the July 25 edition of the JCR Weekly Question of the Week, “Have you named your steno machine?” Several people replied with fascinating stories as to the meaning of their machines’ names.


Name: Ebony Reynolds-Spivey, RPR

Location: Pickerington, Ohio

Type of reporter: Official

Machine name: My steno machine’s name is Essence.

How long have you had your machine: I purchased my Luminex II on April 29, 2022.

Anything else we should know about why you selected that name: I named my steno machine Essence because the essence of what I do as a stenographer is derived from my steno machine. It is an important element of my job. Also, my name is Ebony like the magazine and Essence is a name of a magazine, and so, we shall name her Essence. Cheesy, I know, but I love it.


Name: Cindy Lee Brown, RPR

Location: Manati, Puerto Rico

Type of reporter: Federal Official

Machine name:  Pink Cadillac

How long have you had it:  One month

Anything else we should know about why you selected that name:  I selected “Pink Cadillac” because that was my first thought when I opened the box and saw this beauty!

Name: Sonia G. Trevino

Location: Jim Wells and Brooks Counties, Texas

Type of reporter: Official

Machine name: Barrio Girl

How long have you had it: Six years 

Anything else we should know about why you selected that name: I often refer myself as a girl from the barrio who was fortunate to discover this profession and gain the skill. My high school is in the barrios of Corpus Christi. Our school colors are purple and gold, and in recent years, black has also now been incorporated. 


Name: Leah Willersdorf, RPR, CRR

Location: London, U.K.

Type of reporter: Freelance

Machine name: Lucian (Luminex I)

How long have you had it: August 2015

Anything else we should know about why you selected that name: Lucian translates to “light” in Latin, and coming from an Elan Mira A3, the Luminex was as light as a feather (though I think it may be referring to illumination light as opposed to weight, but hey-ho!).

Name: Lisa B. Johnston, RMR, CRR, CRC

Location: Melbourne, Fla.

Type of reporter: CART Captioner

Machine name: “Shadow” (Luminex I)

How long have you had it: 2015

Anything else we should know about why you selected that name: I love the working relationship I have with “Me and my Shadow.” Just like our own shadows, my writer “Shadow” and I are side-by-side together through it all in this career that I absolutely love.

Name: Megan M. Hefler, RDR

Location: North Hampton, N.H.

Type of reporter: Freelancer

Machine name: Auriga

How long have you had it: All my writers have been named this, but I have had my current writer (Luminex) about 2 years now.

Anything else we should know about why you selected that name: Auriga is a constellation. Its name is Latin for charioteer. It is most prominent during winter evenings in the northern hemisphere.


Name: Lisa Conley Yungblut, RDR, CRR, CRC

Location: Cincinnati, Ohio

Type of reporter:  Federal Official

Machine name:  Bonnie

How long have you had it:  Ordered it at the NCRA Conference in New Orleans, 2018.

Anything else we should know about why you selected that name:  She has the aqua blue top, and one of my favorite movies is Gone with the Wind, so I just thought of Bonnie Blue and named her Bonnie.  Also, I use keypads from KLOR, and I change them out with the seasons.


Name: Janine Ferren, RMR, CRR

Location: Fishers, Ind.

Type of reporter:  Freelancer

Machine name: Scarlet Letters

How long have you had it: Three years

Anything else we should know about why you selected that name:  She is red and black. I chose Scarlet because of the red color, and Letters because she doesn’t just write one letter – she writes all of them!


Name: Donna Urlaub, RMR, CRR

Location: Chicago, Ill.

Type of reporter: Freelancer

Machine name: My Lumi

How long have you had it: Whatever year the Luminex II was introduced

Anything else we should know about why you selected that name: I just like the sound of it; no particular reason.


Name: Lin Riffle, RDR, CRR, CRC

Location: Columbus, Ohio

Type of reporter: Freelancer

Machine name: Matilda

How long have you had it: Six years

Anything else we should know about why you selected that name: This is the first writer I have named, and I’m not sure how she became “Matilda” but it just fits. 


Name: Amber Locke

Location: Houston, Texas

Type of reporter: Student

Machine name: Sabrina

How long have you had it: Since May, 2020

Anything else we should know about why you selected that name: I chose the name Sabrina because as a ’90s kid, Sabrina the Teenage Witch was one of my all-time favorite shows. I always wished that I had magical powers while growing up, and I fully believe I got that wish in the amazing world of steno.


Name: Kelly Linkowski, RPR, CRR, CRC, CPE

Location: Rittman, Ohio

Type of reporter: CART captioner

Machine name: James Alexander Malcolm MacKenzie Fraser

How long have you had it: March 2020

Anything else we should know about why you selected that name: It’s a red and black Luminex II. Anyone that’s read the series “Outlander” will understand.

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