NCRA meets with new Zambian court reporting organization

Representatives of the Court Reporters Association of Zambia meet with NCRA staff at the Association’s headquarters

Court reporters in Zambia, in southern Africa, have organized a new professional organization called the Court Reporters Association of Zambia. The association is interested in developing a certification program, possibly based on NCRA’s Registered Professional Reporter certification, in their country. The Court Reporters Association of Zambia was organized last year, on the advice of NCRA. Zambia has approximately 87 court reporters, about 53 of which are working reporters.

A contingent of Zambian reporters and other law professionals visited with NCRA staff on Oct. 30 to discuss NCRA history, NCRA’s certifications, how certification functions in the United States, and more details about NCRA’s testing program. The representatives included:

  • The Hon. Mr. Justice Mathew L. Zulu (High Court judge)
  • Brendon Mandyata (head of court reporting at Judiciary)
  • Kambole Ng’andu (principal court reporter and president of the Court Reporters Association of Zambia)
  • Mable Mvula (principal court reporter and secretary general of the Court Reporters Association of Zambia)
  • Vallencia Imataa (principal court reporter and secretary of the Court Reporters Association of Zambia).

“This trip answered all the gray areas that we had, not only for court reporters but for the judiciary because court reporting is fundamental to the speedy dispensation of justice,” said the Hon. Mr. Justice Mathew L. Zulu.

In the future, the Court Reporters Association of Zambia hopes to expand their membership, certify their members, and recruit and train new reporters in Zambia. They will also work on developing their own General Requirements and Minimum Standards. Zambian reporters will work closely with NCRA to accomplish these goals.

“NCRA is the leading authority and advocate of the court reporting profession both in the U.S. and internationally. Court reporting associations worldwide look to us for guidance on maintaining excellence in the profession, the latest of which was Zambia,” said Matthew Barusch, NCRA’s Manager of State Government Relations. “Zambia started this association due to our advice, and with our continued support, we can help the profession continue to grow abroad.”

NCRA’s international outreach efforts also include NCRA’s affiliation with the British Institute of Verbatim Reporters and having international members, especially in Canada, as part of NCRA membership.


NCRA announces affiliation with British Institute of Verbatim Reporters

NCRA Board of Directors announced that it has approved an official affiliation with the British Institute of Verbatim Reporters (BIVR). The unanimous vote to welcome the BIVR as an affiliate was made during the November Board Meeting, held at NCRA headquarters in Reston, Va.

“This affiliation means exactly what it does for the state associations, in the way of a formalized relationship between our two organizations based on a duality of purpose,” said Matthew R. Barusch, NCRA’s Manager of State Government Relations.

“This affiliation is important to NCRA because it reflects and reaffirms our commitment to protecting the profession, now on an international scale. By forming a partnership with our colleagues across the pond, we are able to develop a mutually beneficial relationship where we can help each other grow, learn from each other, and together commit our resources to protecting the profession that both organizations represent,” Barusch added.

The BIVR is the leading organization for verbatim reporters in the United Kingdom. The group promotes training and professional skills and has a Code of Ethics by which its members adhere. BIVR members work in many spheres of the law such as the High Court, Crown Courts, tribunals, and inquiries. Members write machine shorthand using Stenograph, a variety of Palantype system machines, or Pitman handwritten shorthand.

“BIVR is very excited about becoming affiliated with NCRA, a leading organization in our industry. Both BIVR and NCRA strive to promote and protect the professions in our respective countries while continuing to move with the times and keep our members updated on all the goings-on in the profession,” said Leah Willersdorf, a freelance court reporter and BIVR president.

“We are looking forward to what lays ahead in this affiliation and all which that will bring with us. We know we can learn a thing or two from NCRA and we hope, in turn, perhaps you, too, can learn something from us,” added Willersdorf, who will be carrying over her role as BIVR president through 2017.

“While we are still exploring how both organizations can benefit from this affiliation, initially it will take form of an editorial partnership. In addition, BIVR leadership has expressed an interest in attending the 2017 NCRA Firm Owners Executive Conference as well as the 2017 NCRA Convention & Expo,” noted Barusch.