Learn how to avoid being derailed when it comes to your retirement security

Attend the NCRA 2021 Business Summit and learn how you can avoid being derailed by rising health costs and more when it comes to securing your retirement. Randy Rust with Prudential will lead The Five Retirement Derailers, one of several insightful sessions on the schedule for the 2021 event themed ‘Rise to the Challenge! Winning Approaches on Adapting to Change,’ happening Jan. 29–31 at the Hyatt Regency Savannah in beautiful and historic Savannah, Ga. Register by Nov. 30 to take advantage of the early access savings $50 on all registration fees.

If you have safety concerns about your stay at the host hotel, rest assured that the Hyatt Regency Savannah is taking every precaution to keep its guests and its staff safe. Under the hotel’s global care and cleanliness commitment, the Hyatt Regency Savannah is working closely with the trusted medical and industry advisors of the Cleveland Clinic. The Hyatt also holds accreditation for cleanliness from the Global Bio-risk Advisory Council. In addition, each Hyatt has on staff dedicated hygiene and wellness leaders to reinforce cleanliness standards.

In his session, Rust will address how rising healthcare costs, longevity, changes in the interest rate environment, market volatility, and taxes all present challenges to one’s retirement. This presentation lays out what can go wrong and why – and how you can protect yourself. The presentation also touches on the risk of becoming chronically or terminally ill.

Attendees will also learn how to navigate government agencies to secure lucrative procurement contracts, and how to take advantage of the technology resources you already have access to — for instance, LinkedIn and other social media platforms — that can expand the reach of your business and help you stay connected to clients and potential new clients. Rosanna Catalano, founder and president of Rocket Ship Consultants, a company that works with clients looking to change their professional trajectory through business consulting, career coaching, and video podcasting, will lead Business: How to Leverage Government Resources and the Technology at your Fingertips to Grow your Business.

Catalano’s varied background as a lobbyist, trial attorney, television news producer, professor, university dean, career coach, and chief agency administrator allows her to provide her clients with a unique perspective and skill set for solving problems, storytelling, and creating successful strategies.

Other schedule highlights include keynote speaker Melanie S. Griffin, Esq., who will kick off a two-part session with Maximizing Your Personal & Professional Life: The Art of Focusing, Prioritizing, and Goal Crushing, where she will provide insights and strategies to help you stretch the 24 hours in each day. It will be followed by Rebrand 2021: Personal Branding & Networking Strategies to Shine Beyond Your Competition. 

The “Hot Seat” Peer-to-Peer Solution Storming is also on the schedule. In this session, participants will be broken into groups, and each person in each group will have the chance to be in the “hot seat” and benefit from the sage advice of their peers during this interactive session. Participants will share their own experiences, what-ifs, and those twisty turns that keep them up at night and go home with solutions they can put into effect in their business. As a bonus to all participants, one person from each group will be chosen to share what was learned with the entire group.

Other sessions on the schedule for the 2021 NCRA Business Summit will cover topics such as business law, successful social media strategies, and numerous networking sessions. Watch the JCR Weekly for more information about additional sessions and speakers.

During early access registration, which runs through Nov. 30, the cost to register is $695 for NCRA members, $795 for nonmembers, $595 for additional attendees from the same firm, and $175 for a spouse/guest attending social functions only. Fees will increase after Nov. 30 by $50 for members, nonmembers, and additional attendees. The cost for a spouse/guest will increase by $25.

Please note that the spouse/guest registration category is reserved for a spouse/guest of an attendee who is registered for the conference. Professional reporters and captioners may not register for this category as a guest. Guests are welcome at only the receptions through the spouse/guest package; attendance at the educational sessions requires a full registration.

A special rate of $225 per night is also available through Jan. 6, 2021; the rate does not include tax and other fees for single, double, or triple occupancy. The cost for quad occupancy is $250 per night plus tax and other fees. The cutoff date for the discounted rates will be Jan. 6, 2021, or until the room block is filled, whichever comes first.

Make plans now for one of NCRA’s most popular networking and learning events and take advantage of all Savannah has to offer, from waterfront views, delectable dining, unique shopping, historical offerings, and more. Register now and save.

Sponsorship information: Contact Jill Landsman, Development Relations Manager, at jlandsman@ncra.org.

NCRA Holiday Pop-Up Store starts Nov. 20

Just in time for the holidays, and for the first time ever, NCRA will have a pop-up store from Nov. 20 to Dec. 2. The two-week online store allows time to order and receive your merchandise for holiday giving.

Visit the store.

The store will offer a variety of holiday items and apparel. All purchases from the NCRA Holiday Pop-Up Store will help benefit court reporting and captioning students and new professionals by supporting NCRF’s New Professional Grant, Student Intern Scholarships, and the NCRA A to Z® Scholarships.

The link to the store will be sent out in email on Nov. 20. Watch during the two weeks for announcements about specially priced items.

Call for presentations for the 2021 NCRA Conference & Expo

NCRA has issued a call for presentations for its 2021 Convention & Expo. NCRA is seeking presentations for the largest gathering of captioners and court reporters in the United States.

NCRA’s Education Content Committee is looking for topics that would be of interest to working court reporters, captioners, and legal videographers. Popular topics include working during COVID-19, realtime, ethics, technology, brief-writing systems, captioning best practices, and the latest in videography. Past speakers have noted that giving presentations has benefited their careers, helped them to meet new people, and helped them build networks within the NCRA community. Click here to read about the experience of a first-time presenter.

Click here for more information or to submit a topic for consideration. The deadline to submit topics and speakers is Jan. 14, 2021.

Take your turn in the hot seat at the 2021 NCRA Business Summit

“Hot Seat” Peer-to-Peer Solution Storming is just one of the new and innovative sessions being offered at the 2021 NCRA Business Summit taking place Jan. 29–31 at the Hyatt Regency Savannah in beautiful and historic Savannah, Ga.

So how does the session “Hot Seat” Peer-to-Peer Solution Storming work? Participants will be broken into groups, and each person in each group will have the chance to be in the “hot seat” and benefit from the sage advice of their peers during this interactive session. Participants will share their own experiences, what-ifs, and those twisty turns that keep them up at night and go home with solutions they can put into effect in their business. As a bonus to all participants, one person from each group will be chosen to share what was learned with the entire group.

“The 2021 NCRA Business Summit theme ‘Rise to the Challenge! Winning Approaches on Adapting to Change’ reflects the current state of pivoting we are all faced with to ensure doing business successfully. Getting a chance in the hot seat to share with your peers what issues you need insight on is just one of the many sessions planned to help attendees rise to their own challenges in today’s changing marketplace,” said NCRA President Christine Phipps, RPR, an agency owner from North Palm Beach, Fla.

If you have safety concerns about your stay at the host hotel, rest assured that the Hyatt Regency Savannah is taking every precaution to keep its guests and its staff safe.

Under the hotel’s global care and cleanliness commitment, the Hyatt Regency Savannah is working closely with the trusted medical and industry advisors of the Cleveland Clinic and holds accreditation for cleanliness from the Global Bio-risk Advisory Council. In addition, each Hyatt has on staff dedicated hygiene and wellness leaders to reinforce cleanliness standards.

Other safety and health measures the Hyatt Regency Savannah has employed include: mandatory wearing of masks by guests and staff especially when inside the facility and when moving around in outside venues; spacing measures and signage; rigorous cleaning with hospital-grade disinfectants; increased frequency of sanitizing public spaces with electrostatic sprayers; sanitizing stations prominently positioned throughout the hotel; enhanced food safety procedures; capacity guidelines at elevators and all public spaces; and more.

Additional highlights on the schedule include Melanie S. Griffin, Esq., who will serve as keynote speaker. She will kick off a two-part session with Maximizing Your Personal & Professional Life: The Art of Focusing, Prioritizing, and Goal Crushing, where she will provide insights and strategies to help you stretch the 24 hours in each day, followed by Rebrand 2021: Personal Branding & Networking Strategies to Shine Beyond Your Competition. 

In addition, Pick Me! Pick Me! being presented by Virginia A. Jones, paralegal, Korinne R. Morris, ACP, and Jessica Van Troost, will comprise a panel of law firm key players who will address what they look for and consider in choosing a court reporting firm, as well as the likes and dislikes in court reporting operations and tips for court reporting firm staff to make their firm stand out from the rest.

Other sessions on the schedule for the 2021 NCRA Business Summit will cover topics such as financial planning, business law and leveraging government regulations to help your business, successful social media strategies, and numerous networking sessions. Watch the JCR Weekly for more information about additional sessions and speakers.

During early access registration, which runs through Nov. 30, the cost to register is $695 for NCRA members, $795 for nonmembers, $595 for additional attendees from the same firm, and $175 for a spouse/guest attending social functions only. Fees will increase after Nov. 30 by $50 for members, nonmembers, and additional attendees. The cost for a spouse/guest will increase by $25.

Please note that the spouse/guest registration category is reserved for a spouse/guest of an attendee who is registered for the conference. Professional reporters and captioners may not register for this category as a guest. Guests are welcome at only the receptions through the spouse/guest package; attendance at the educational sessions requires a full registration.

A special rate of $225 per night is also available through Jan. 6, 2021; the rate does not include tax and other fees for single, double, or triple occupancy. The cost for quad occupancy is $250 per night plus tax and other fees. The cutoff date for the discounted rates will be Jan. 6, 2021, or until the room block is filled, whichever comes first.

Make plans now for one of NCRA’s most popular networking and learning events and take advantage of all Savannah has to offer, from waterfront views, delectable dining, unique shopping, historical offerings, and more. Register now and save.

Sponsorship information: Contact Jill Landsman, Development Relations Manager, at jlandsman@ncra.org.

Keynote speaker announced for 2021 NCRA Business Summit

Melanie S. Griffin, Esq.

Melanie S. Griffin, Esq., will serve as keynote speaker at the 2021 NCRA Business Summit taking place Jan. 29–31 at the Hyatt Regency Savannah in beautiful and historic Savannah, Ga. The theme for this event, “Rise to the Challenge! Winning Approaches on Adapting to Change,” is especially reflective of the current state of pivoting to ensure doing business successfully. Right now, early access registration is open through Nov. 30, offering a $50 savings on all categories of registration fees.

Griffin, a triple-graduate of Florida State University, honed her entrepreneurial skills for 13 years at a prominent Florida corporate law firm, where she served as a law clerk and then attorney from 2006–19. During the last five years of her work there, she was an equity shareholder and the Tampa office managing partner. In 2019, Melanie joined Shumaker, Loop & Kendrick, LLP, an Am Law 200 firm that is the largest law firm in Tampa Bay, as senior advisor, business-to-business relationships.

She will kick off a two-part session with Maximizing Your Personal & Professional Life: The Art of Focusing, Prioritizing, and Goal Crushing, where she will provide insights and strategies to help you stretch the 24 hours in each day. According to Griffin, “Together, we will develop a personal strategy that incorporates time management skills and other productive habits to help you set and crush big goals, rid yourself of procrastination, achieve work-life balance, and focus on meaningful activities that best align with your priorities and mission.”

The second half of Griffin’s presentation is called Rebrand 2021: Personal Branding & Networking Strategies to Shine Beyond Your Competition. In this segment, she will teach attendees how to authentically connect with others, create a lasting positive mindset, increase their daily energy, and find and explain how their “why” will elevate their business, maximize their professional relationships, and increase their profitability.

During her legal career, Griffin served as the 2011–12 president of the Central Florida Association for Women Lawyers (FAWL) and 2013–14 president of the Florida Bar Young Lawyers Division. In 2021–22, she will serve as president of the Hillsborough Association for Women Lawyers. As a result of such leadership, she has been recognized by numerous organizations, including as Florida’s Most Productive Young Lawyer (2009), FAWL Leader in the Law (2010), Super Lawyers Rising Star (Business Litigation 2010–20), Florida Trend Legal Elite (Up & Comer 2010–14, Commercial Litigation 2014–18), and more.

In 2019, Melanie assisted with the launch of Nora Riva Bergman’s book 50 Lessons for Women Lawyers from Women Lawyers at the New York City Bar Association. Her contribution was published as Lesson #20, Dream Beyond Perfection!

She is a sought-after keynote speaker who has addressed local, statewide, national, and international places of work and professional, community, and civic organizations, including Fortune 500 companies, the ALFA International Client Seminar, the U.S./Canada KNOW Women Summit, the American Bar Association, the New York Bar Association, Florida Association for Women Lawyers, Florida Paralegal Association, the Florida Bar,  and several universities and law schools.

Other sessions on the schedule for the 2021 NCRA Business Summit will cover topics such as financial planning, business law and leveraging government regulations to help our business, successful social media strategies, and numerous networking sessions. Watch the JCR Weekly for more information about additional sessions and speakers.

During early access registration, which runs through Nov. 30, the cost to register is $695 for NCRA members, $795 for nonmembers, $595 for additional attendees from the same firm, and $175 for a spouse/guest attending social functions only. Fees will increase after Nov. 30 by $50 for members, nonmembers, and additional attendees. The cost for a spouse/guest will increase by $25. Please note that the spouse/guest registration category is reserved for a spouse/guest of an attendee who is registered for the conference. Professional reporters and captioners may not register for this category as a guest. Guests are welcome at only the receptions through the spouse/guest package; attendance at the educational sessions requires a full registration.

A special rate of $225 per night is also available through Jan. 6, 2021; the rate does not include tax and other fees for single, double, or triple occupancy. The cost for quad occupancy is $250 per night plus tax and other fees. The cutoff date for the discounted rates will be Jan. 6, 2021, or until the room block is filled, whichever comes first.

Make plans now for one of NCRA’s most popular networking and learning events and take advantage of all Savannah has to offer, from waterfront views, delectable dining, unique shopping, historical offerings, and more. Register now and save.

Sponsorship information: Contact Jill Landsman, Development Relations Manager, at jlandsman@ncra.org.

New live webinar teaches commencement captioning

The idea for a new live NCRA webinar started when Alan Peacock, FAPR, RDR, CRR, CRC, a freelancer and CART captioner in Mobile, Ala., realized there hadn’t been a class on best practices for commencement captioning. He said he took that as a challenge.

The live webinar Captioning and Scripting for Commencement Ceremonies 101 is being offered Nov. 2 from 7-8 p.m. Eastern time. It is worth 0.1 CEU and costs $55 for members and $79 for nonmembers.

“More educational institutions than ever are now web-streaming their commencement ceremonies with captioning, especially now with social distancing during the pandemic we are experiencing,” Peacock said. “So this is an excellent time to attend this seminar to pick up the skills you need so that you can market yourself as prepped and ready when graduation season falls upon us. Companies will be looking for a lot of help this year. Come attend my seminar and you will be ready to go!”

The webinar will cover what prep materials you will need to successfully caption a commencement ceremony. Participants will learn the pros and cons of YouTube and various other platforms. The session will also discuss commencement captioning best practices for scripting songs/traditional vocabulary/graduates’ names.

“Although different universities and colleges have differing formats and delivery methods, the one thing that is pretty consistent is the format,” Peacock said. “For example, most every convocation will have the school fight song at the end. So you have to know that in advance and prep your scripts in advance and be ready for what’s to come.”

Participants will also receive a complimentary copy of “Text Converter,” a small application used to aid in scripting for the professional captioner.

Registration is open now.

Register now for NCRA’s 2021 Business Summit and save

Early access registration opens Oct. 15 for NCRA’s 2021 Business Summit, themed “Rise to the Challenge! Winning Approaches on Adapting to Change.” Early access offers a limited time to save on registration fees for members, nonmembers, additional attendees, and guests. The 2021 event is taking place Jan. 29-31 at the Hyatt Regency Savannah in beautiful and historic Savannah, Ga.  

“Each year I’ve attended this remarkable event, I’ve expanded my network of professional influencers and personal friendships, as well as taken home new ideas that have helped me to grow and strengthen my business and my staff,” said NCRA President Christine Phipps, RPR, a firm owner from North Palm Beach, Fla.

“Please join us as we kick off a new year and shed the isolation blues with masks and social distance in the beautiful city of Savannah at what is sure to be the ultimate one-of-a-kind experience known as NCRA’s Business Summit,” she added.

During early access registration, which runs through Nov. 30, the cost to register is $695 for NCRA members, $795 for nonmembers, $595 for additional attendees from the same firm, and $175 for a spouse/guest attending social functions only. Fees will increase after Nov. 30 by $50 for members, nonmembers, and additional attendees. The cost for a spouse/guest will increase by $25. Please note that the spouse/guest registration category is reserved for a spouse/guest of an attendee that is registered for the conference. Professional reporters and captioners may not register for this category as a guest. Guests are welcome at the receptions only in this package; attendance at the educational sessions requires a full registration.

A special rate of $225 per night is also available beginning Oct. 15 through Jan. 6, plus tax and other fees for single, double, or triple occupancy. The cost for quad occupancy is $250 per night plus tax and other fees. The cutoff date for the discounted rates will be Jan. 6, 2021, or until the room block is filled, whichever comes first.

Make plans now for one of NCRA’s most popular networking and learning events and take advantage of all Savannah has to offer from waterfront views, delectable dining, unique shopping, historical haunted offerings, and more. Register now and save.

It’s not too late to invest in yourself with free webinars

There’s still time to register to catch the last four in a series of live webinars happening as part of NCRA’s Mental Health Awareness Week being observed Oct. 5-9. These webinars are filling up fast and are designed to help members learn more about how to take care of themselves through a series of free sessions that range from a discussion of the ramifications of working in the legal industry to strategies to create more resilience in your everyday life with better self-care.

Although no CEUs are being offered for these sessions, the National Court Reporters Foundation (NCRF), which is sponsoring these sessions, feels that these are important topics that should be made available to all NCRA members. All webinars are being offered on Zoom and will take place in Eastern time. All of the webinars are being recorded and will be made available for later viewing by members on the NCRA Mental Health Resources page.

Remaining sessions that will be offered live this week include:

Balance and Self-Care in a World of COVID-19, Deadlines, and Virtuality taking place Oct. 7 at 3 p.m., Eastern time is being led by Vicki Akenhead Ruiz, FAPR, RPR, CMRS (Ret.), a former court reporter and a past NCRA president. Ruiz will talk about approaches to dealing with the stress coming from working in the courtroom and how stress affects reporters. In addition, she will share tips for dealing with loss and how to strengthen your overall mental health.

*Special for students*

Self-Care: Managing Life with School, Family, Work – and a Pandemic, is being offered Oct. 7 at 7 p.m. Eastern time. The session is being led by Dr. Sherry Cooper, LMFT, who will address how to balance the responsibilities of being a student and taking care of yourself. Dr. Cooper will also introduce the topic of self-care, its importance to your overall well-being, ways to engage in self-care, and the repercussions of neglecting self-care.

Practicing Mindfulness is being presented on Oct. 8 at 1 p.m. Eastern time. This session is being led by Debi Galler, the general counsel of Green Street Power Partners, a developer, owner, and operator of solar projects throughout the United States based in Connecticut and a mindfulness practitioner and trainer. Galler will explain how mindfulness can play a meaningful role in the lives of legal professionals and how mindfulness can change the structure and function of the brain in the areas of attention, emotional regulation, and memory. Galler will also teach participants exercises that can help them reduce stress and work effectively in emotionally charged and challenging situations.

Self-Care 101, is taking place on Oct. 9 at 12 noon Eastern time. Aigner Fells, MS, is a psychotherapist who provides therapy for individuals, couples, groups, and families and takes a holistic approach to bring awareness to her clients and help them work to develop strategies and reach desired goals. She will discuss the issue of burnout syndrome and how self-care can set the stage to counter burnout, which, in turn, releases physical and emotional toxins. Throughout the webinar, participants will learn about the effects of burnout syndrome and how to be better equipped with tools and strategies for implementing self-care as part of their daily routine.

Previous webinars that will be available for viewing by members are located on the NCRA Mental Health Awareness page and include:

An Honest Discussion on Mental Health Issues in the Legal Field from All Stakeholders, which was an open town hall discussion conducted by Dori Foster-Morales, Esq.; NCRA President Christine Phipps, RPR; and the Hon. Beatrice Butchko of how our jobs in the legal field affect our mental health and how we can protect ourselves. The discussion also confronts some of the myths and fears about mental health and will provide insight and understanding into how we can help ourselves and others when it comes to mental health issues.

Back to Basics: Mental Health Essentials during the Pandemic, which was led by Raymond J. Kotwicki, MD, MPH, DFAPA, the Charles B. West chief medical officer at Skyland Trail, a nationally acclaimed treatment organization for adults with mental illnesses based in Atlanta, Ga., and a nationally recognized speaker on issues in psychiatry, mental health, professionalism, and wellness. The session focuses on the psychological impacts the COVID-19 pandemic has had on all of us, from social isolation to increased sleep disturbances and chronic worry and anxiety. Kotwicki also talks about how to differentiate when feelings are “normal” during such unprecedented times and when they suggest more serious problems, and more.

Getting some help with mental health

Survey results from the JCR Weekly

What are you doing to make time for yourself and provide self-care?

4.5% — I meditate.

24.2% — I try to eat healthfully.

40.6% — I exercise regularly.

10.7% — I make sure I take a lunch break.

20.1% — Chocolate!

Providing self-care right now is more important than ever, and NCRA members are finding different ways to make it happen.

Christina Diaz, RMR, CRR, CRC, a freelance reporter from Lindenhurst, N.Y., is practicing mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR).

“I started a daily practice of MBSR, and although there are many variations, what has been extremely helpful for me is simply sitting quietly for about 10-12 minutes each day,” Diaz said. “During this quiet time, I direct my attention to a simple short phrase, repeating it over and over again. If my mind wanders, which it inevitably and constantly does, I simply begin again. Following my quiet time, I write in a notebook everything that comes to mind, whether or not I think it makes sense, just let it flow, without editing, without judgment. I just clear out all the extra chatter that floats around.”

Diaz said that within the first couple weeks she felt more clear-headed and balanced, and she has even noticed it has benefited her work.

“I was less reactive, and I felt like I was better handling the daily stress and the uncertainties of life,” Diaz said. “What a welcomed gift!”

Read her story here.

For NCRA Mental Health Awareness Week, being held Oct. 5-9, members can learn more about how to take care of themselves through a series of free sessions that range from a discussion of the ramifications of working in the legal industry to strategies to create more resilience in your everyday life with better self-care.

Registration is open now for these free, members-only webinars.

  • Oct. 5 An Honest Discussion on Mental Health Issues in the Legal Field from All Stakeholders
  • Oct. 6 Back to Basics: Mental Health Essentials during the Pandemic
  • Oct. 7 Balance and Self-Care in a World of COVID-19, Deadlines, and Virtuality  
  • Oct. 7 (special for students) Self-Care: Managing Life with School, Family, Work – and a Pandemic 
  • Oct. 8 Practicing Mindfulness
  • Oct. 9 Self-Care 101

Some members shared on NCRA’s social media how they are making time for themselves and providing self-care:

Trying to exercise minimum 30 minutes per day. Going to bed earlier … although that means I am getting up even earlier.

Rich Germosen, RDR, CRR, a freelancer in North Brunswick, N.J.


Stepping away from editing to go for a walk, using a meditation app, reading about an inspirational person every day. That’s how I try to stay positive.

Jessica Shines, a student in Chicago, Ill.


This is so timely! I just wrote a little something about how I combat Zoom gloom.

Lynette Mueller, FAPR, RDR, CRR, a freelancer in Memphis, Tenn.


I am taking care of myself by working out, meditating, and eating as healthy as I can when I can. It’s super hard to do that with juggling all of these jobs as a mom, court reporter, biz owner, and fiancée.

Denee Vadell, an official in Edison, N.J.


Not only do I love my job as a CART captioner, but my other love is yoga. I’m a certified yoga instructor just about to complete 500 hours of training. I have a regular yoga and meditation practice every morning to help me seize the day. And I leave my mat out all day to remind myself to take breaks in between classes and meetings to stretch or to just breathe.

Anna Castle, RPR, a CART captioner in Mokena, Ill.


I’m volunteering my services for affinity groups and social activism that I believe in, which helps me feel more connected and part of my communities. Part of my mental health is transgender advocacy and language justice work, outside of the standard university and museum and conference spaces of CART — even as I enjoy those, too. By distributing my time across the work that earns money, the work that feels socially generative, and my close nourishing relationships, I feel more productive, balanced, and rejuvenated than when I worked less overall.

Cory Dostie, a CART captioner in Albany, Calif.

Celebrating National Punctuation Day

From a JCR Weekly poll

What punctuation mark is misused the most?

Comma 52.9 percent

Semi-colon 31.6 percent

Quotation marks 3.8 percent

Hyphen 3 percent

Exclamation mark 2.7 percent

Colon 1.9 percent

Dash 1.5 percent

Parentheses 0.8 percent

Question mark 0.8 percent

In honor of National Punctuation Day on Sept. 24, we asked NCRA members for examples of punctuation errors that are the most annoying. Here are some of the responses:

Not using the Oxford comma!!!!!

Rachel Barkume, RPR, CRR, a freelance reporter and CART Captioner in Alta, Calif.


 “This“. and “that“, Hurts to even type it that way!

Heather Bradfield, RPR, CRR, CRC, a freelance reporter in North Logan, Utah


People who use apostrophes to make nouns plural!

Stephanie Koenigs, RPR, a freelance reporter in Fond du lac, Wisc.


The dash because, if I’m using it, I’m usually trying to make sense out of someone’s sloppy, broken sentences. So I guess it’s really the speaker that annoys me.

Deborah Cohen-Rojas, RDR, CRR, an official reporter in Grayslake, Ill.


‘ (apostrophe) in the wrong place’s . It’s getting worse all the time.

Diane Stanley, a broadcast captioner in Ocean Shores, Wash.


Holiday cards that say From The Smith’s. I can’t even enjoy the sentiment of the season!

 Amy Doman, RMR, CRR, a freelance reporter in Carmel, Ind.


Apostrophe abuse. Apostrophes used for plurals or in possessive pronouns like her’s or their’s instead of hers or theirs.

Elsa Jorgensen, a freelance reporter in Birmingham, Mich.


Omitted direct address commas.

Rich Germosen, RDR, CRR, a freelance reporter in North Brunswick, N.J.


We are the Blackburns, not the Blackburn’s.

Brenda Blackburn, RPR, a freelance reporter in Hollandale, Miss.


1. Hyphenated adverb/adjective pairs and 2. “She was 10-years-old.” Aggh! “She was a 10-year-old girl,” great.

Aimee Suhie, a freelance reporter in New Fairfield, Conn.


My number one is when the apostrophe is used with numbers.

“It happened in the 1980’s.”

“The price was in the 140’s.”

Stop the madness!

Cassy Kerr, RPR, CRR, CRC, an official reporter in The Village, Okla.


The misuse of plural possessives.

Barb Quinn, RMR, a freelance reporter in West Chester, Pa.


For me it’s not using a semicolon before “and” when joining two clauses when there is punctuation in one of the clauses.

Susan Horak, RDR, CRR, a scopist in Columbus, Ohio