Get to know the NCRA Slate of Nominees

NCRA’s Nominating Committee has offered its candidates for the 2019-2020 Board of Directors. The following outlines the candidates’ qualifications for members to prepare for voting. As provided in the Bylaws, additional nominations were possible if received within 60 days after publication of the Nominating Committee slate. The date by which additional nominations were to be received was May 12. No additional nominations were received. The following slate of Officers and Directors will be elected by acclamation to their respective offices during the Annual Business Meeting in Denver, Colo. In accordance with NCRA’s Bylaws, the President-Elect automatically succeeds to the office of the President.

President-Elect
Christine Phipps, RPR
North Palm Beach, Fla.

Christine Phipps, RPR
Christine Phipps, RPR

Christine Phipps is a Registered Professional Reporter (RPR) and president of Phipps Reporting, based in North Palm Beach, Fla. She is the current Vice President of the National Court Reporters Association (NCRA). She received her associate degree in court reporting from Broward State College, Fort Lauderdale, Fla., and worked as an official court reporter for the first two years of her career. She spent the next 15 years working internationally as a freelance realtime court reporter.
Phipps is also an Eclipse Trainer, holds the Realtime Systems Administrator certificate, and has served as Chair of NCRA’s Technology and Freelance Committees, as well as on numerous other committees. She participated in the rewrite of NCRA’s Deposition Handbook, is a frequent contributor to the JCR, and has been a speaker at national and at state conventions.

Phipps was awarded the 2014 Most Enterprising Woman of the Year, Game Changer of the Year, and U.S. Small Business Administration’s South Florida District 2017 Woman-Owned Small Business Person of the Year Award. Her company has also made Inc. magazine’s 5000 list every year since 2014, making her the first honorary member of the Inc. 5000 in the court reporting industry. Phipps has also received numerous other business awards and was featured on the cover of Wealth & Finance magazine.

U.S. Small Business Administration’s South Florida District 2017 Woman-Owned Small Business Person of the Year Award.

Vice President
Debra A. Dibble, RDR, CRR, CRC
Woodland, Utah

Debbie A. Dibble, RDR, CRR, CRC
Debbie A. Dibble, RDR, CRR, CRC

Debra A. Dibble is a 28-year court reporter veteran who has worked as a deposition reporter in Salt Lake City, Utah, since 2002. She holds the nationally recognized professional certifications of Registered Diplomate Reporter (RDR), Certified Realtime Reporter (CRR), and Certified Realtime Captioner (CRC); she has also qualified in the National Speed and National Realtime Contests multiple times. She also holds NCRA’s Realtime Systems Administrator certificate. Dibble has also worked as a reporter in Memphis, Tenn. She has been a broadcast captioner and CART provider since 2010.

At the national level, Dibble has served as an NCRA Chief Examiner. She served as a delegate to the National Committee of State Associations from 2008 to 2012, in addition to service on numerous other committees. Dibble also served six years on NCRA’s Board of Directors including a three-year term as Secretary-Treasurer. She has also served as a presenter at the national and state levels.

At the state level, Dibble is a past president of the Utah Court Reporters Association and was honored in 2010 with the organization’s Distinguished Service Award.

Kristin M. Anderson, RPR
Kristin M. Anderson, RPR

Secretary-Treasurer
Kristin M. Anderson, RPR
San Antonio, Texas

Kristin Anderson is an official court reporter in San Antonio, Texas, for Bexar County Civil District Court. With more than 19 years of experience, she has worked both as a freelance reporter in Kansas and Missouri and as an official court reporter for the states of Illinois and Kansas. Anderson worked for the United States District Court Western District of Texas from 2013 through 2017 and holds the nationally recognized professional certification of Registered Professional Reporter (RPR) and has her Federal Certified Realtime Reporter (FCRR) designation with the United States Court Reporters Association (USCRA).

At the national level, Anderson is a past chair of the National Committee of State Associations and served on that committee in various capacities from 2006 through 2014. She also served on the Veterans Liaison Committee of NCRA’s New Professionals Committee, the Membership and Telemarketing Committee, and the Steno Opportunities in the Courts Task Force.

At the state level, Anderson has served in numerous positions and on various committees for the Kansas Court Reporters Association, including as president for two terms. She served on the Texas Court Reporters Association Convention and Ethics Committees in 2015-2016. Anderson is a member of the Bexar County Court Reporters Association, Texas Court Reporters Association, Texas Depositions Reporters Association, The Society for the Technological Advancement of Reporting (better known as STAR), and USCRA.

DIRECTORS
Several people were nominated for directorships of varying lengths in accordance with the changes made to the Constitution & Bylaws last year as well as some directors moving into positions as officers.

Director (three-year term)
Lance A. Boardman, RDR, CRR
Cleveland, Ohio

Lance Boardman, RDR, CRR
Lance Boardman, RDR, CRR

In his 35 years as a court reporter, Boardman has been a freelance reporter, a state official, and an independent contractor. He is now a federal official court reporter for the Northern District of Ohio, Eastern Division. He holds the nationally recognized professional certifications of Registered Diplomat Reporter (RDR), Registered Merit Reporter (RMR), Registered Professional Reporter (RPR), and Certified Realtime Reporter (CRR).
At the national level, Boardman has served on NCRA’s Education Content Committee and as a regional director on the National Committee of State Associations Governing Committee.

Boardman has been a member of a number of state associations over the years, as well as USCRA, The Society for the Technological Advancement of Reporting (better known as STAR), and Texas Depositions Reporters Association. He most recently served as a district director and then secretary on the Ohio Court Reporters Association Board of Directors.

Director (three-year term)
Heidi C. Thomas, FAPR, RMR, CRR, CRC
Acworth, Ga.

Heidi C. Thomas, FAPR, RMR, CRR, CRC
Heidi C. Thomas, FAPR, RDR, RMR, CRR, CRC

Heidi C. Thomas, FAPR, RDR, RMR, CRR, CRC, has been a court reporter since 1978 and a broadcast and CART captioner since 1989. She holds the nationally recognized professional certifications of Registered Merit Reporter (RMR), Certified Realtime Reporter (CRR), Registered Diplomate Reporter (RDR), and Certified Realtime Captioner (CRC). She is a Fellow of the Academy of Professional Reporters (FAPR).

At the national level, Thomas served for six years on the NCRA Realtime Certification Committee, which developed the Certified CART Provider (CCP) and Certified Broadcast Captioner (CBC) certifications. She was also part of the team that developed the Certified Realtime Captioner (CRC) certification. She also served as a member of the NCRA Captioning Regulatory Policy Committees. She has been a member of NCRA’s Council of the Academy of Professional Reporters (CAPR), which deals with certification and education issues. Thomas has served for many years on the faculty/training staff of NCRA.

At the state level, Thomas is a former Director and past Secretary of the Georgia Shorthand Reporters Association (GSRA) and former member of the Board of Court Reporting for the State of Georgia. She has also served as a presenter at the national and at the state level.

There are two openings for a two-year term, and the nominees are:

Director (two-year term)
Keith Lemons, FAPR, RPR, CRR
Brentwood, Tenn.

Keith Lemons, FAPR, RPR, CRR
Keith Lemons, FAPR, RPR, CRR

Keith R. Lemons is a freelance court reporter, a former firm owner, and an official court reporter. He has been a court reporter for 37 years. He holds the nationally recognized professional certifications of Registered Professional Reporter (RPR) and Certified Realtime Reporter (CRR). He is also a Fellow of the Academy of Professional Reporters (FAPR).

At the national level, Lemons has chaired NCRA’s Scopists Task Force and has served on the Constitution & Bylaws, Technology, and Realtime Systems Administrator committees. He has been a contributor to the JCR for many years. He has also served as a presenter at the national and at the state levels.

At the state level, Lemons is a past president of the Wyoming Association of Shorthand Reporters and the Tennessee Court Reporters Association.

Director (two-year term)
Yolanda Walton, FAPR, RPR
Norwalk, Ohio

Yolanda Walton, FAPR, RPR
Yolanda Walton, FAPR, RPR

Yolanda has been an official court reporter for Huron County, Ohio, Common Pleas Court for 31 years and is a past president of the Ohio Court Reporters Association (OCRA). She has been instrumental in helping the OCRA stay the course as one of the leading court reporting and captioning associations in the country.

Yolanda has received the OCRA Glenn W. Stiles Distinguished Service, Martin Fincun, and Diplomat Awards for her outstanding service to the profession and association.
At the national level, Yolanda has been a member of NCRA since a student and has served on numerous committees, including as a National Committee of State Associations Committee Delegate. She also has attended every NCRA convention since 1992.

She holds the nationally recognized professional certification of Registered Professional Reporter (RPR) and is a Fellow of the Academy of Professional Reporters (FAPR).

There is one opening for a one-year term, and the nominee is:

Director (one-year term)
Jason T. Meadors, FAPR, RPR, CRR, CRC
Fort Collins, Colo.

Jason T. Meadors, FAPR, RPR, CRR, CRC
Jason T. Meadors, FAPR, RPR, CRR, CRC

Jason T. Meadors is a firm owner who began his career in court reporting while serving in the U.S. Marine Corps from 1975-1978. He has worked as a freelance court reporter and an official reporter and has owned his own firm since 1989. Meadors holds the nationally recognized professional certifications of Registered Professional Reporter (RPR), Certified Realtime Reporter (CRR), and Certified Realtime Captioner (CRC). He is also a Fellow of the Academy of Professional Reporters (FAPR).
During his career, Meadors has reported in nearly two dozen states as well as in China, India, Japan, Kazakhstan, Mexico, Nigeria, Norway, South Korea, and Taiwan.

At the national level, Meadors has served on numerous NCRA committees, as well as on the Board of Directors and as Secretary-Treasurer. He is also a contributor to the JCR magazine and has presented at the national and at the state level.

His volunteer service has included numerous positions with the Colorado Court Reporters Association, including as its president.

Nominations for NCRA Board of Directors sought

Serving on the NCRA Board of Directors is an excellent opportunity to use your leadership skills to help advance the premier organization that continues to empower the court reporting and captioning professions. As a Director, you will serve with others as fiduciaries to steer the organization towards a sustainable future by adopting sound, ethical, and legal governance and financial management policies as well as by making sure NCRA has adequate resources to advance its mission.

Declare your candidacy or submit recommendations to boardnominations@ncra.org by Jan. 18, 2019. As a courtesy, please contact your candidate directly prior to submitting his or her name.

A Web-based, no-obligation orientation will be held on Wednesday, Jan. 9, for anyone interested in seeking future Board service. This briefing will help you gain a better understanding of the process and expectations of serving on the Board. To sign-up for the Webinar, please click here.








Letter from the President: Moving forward in 2019

By Sue Terry

It’s a great new day at NCRA! I want to communicate with you some recent changes in the leadership of your organization.

As previously announced via social media and email to you, our members, I’m pleased to announce the return of Dave Wenhold, CAE, as NCRA’s Interim CEO & Executive Director and lobbyist. Jeffrey Altman of Whiteford, Taylor & Preston has also returned to serve as NCRA general counsel. Both bring forward-looking vision and vast institutional knowledge, as well as a historical background of the culture of our Association that can serve us all as we bring our membership into the future.

I’m also pleased to announce the four new Board members who stepped up at a moment’s notice to fill the recently vacated Board positions: Jason Meadors, FAPR, RPR, CRR, CRC, of Fort Collins, Colo.; Sarah Nageotte, FAPR, RDR, CRR, CRC, of Jefferson, Ohio; Brooke Ryan, RPR, of Sacramento, Calif.; and Heidi Thomas, FAPR, RDR, CRR, CRC, of Acworth, Ga. They represent teamwork and diversity of opinion with unwavering respect for the principle that they are endlessly committed to the mission of NCRA and protection of our profession.

NCRA is grateful for your continued loyalty and support and understands that membership is a choice we all make. I’ve been honored to be able to represent your interests and will always have you, the member, in mind when decisions are made that affect your future and the health of the profession. All the best for 2019!








2018 changes to Bylaws create new elections processes

Following the 2018 NCRA Annual Business Meeting, members voted to change the procedures for holding elections of members to the Board of Directors. Those changes will go into effect with the 2019 election process.

Overall, the changes will affect the timing of elections and when candidates are elevated to office. Since elections will continue through electronic means, please watch for email notices from NCRA in June and July.

More specifically, the Bylaws changed the following:

  • Members will now be able to vote for a time period of 24 hours instead of only for 12 hours.
  • Voting will occur at least 30 days before the Annual Business Meeting. (Although the timing of the 2019 Annual Business Meeting has not yet been set, the expected dates for the 2019 NCRA Convention & Expo are Aug. 15-18.) See timeline below.
  • Voting on changes to the NCRA Constitution & Bylaws will not take place at the same time as the elections of members to the Board of Directors. Bylaws will continue to be voted on after the Annual Business Meeting, and members will be able to vote on Bylaws amendments for 24 hours.

In addition, if there are more candidates than the number of open seats for Director, candidates will no longer need to specify that they are opposing a specific candidate for a Director’s seat. This will also allow as many candidates who want to run for a seat to do so. Candidates will be elected to the Director seats by plurality of the votes; that is, the Directors’ seats will be filled by the candidates receiving the most votes in descending order. For example, if there were two openings for Directors and five nominees on the ballot, the two candidates who receive the most votes would fill the two available positions.

Finally, the Board of Directors will gradually reduce the number of Directors from nine to six over the next few years. To put this into place, Directors will be nominated to fill two Director seats instead of three. Directors will continue to be elected to three-year terms. (The exception: If additional seats are made available because of a Director’s elevation to Officer or for other reasons, additional candidates will be sought and nominated to complete the remainder of the term.)

This change to six Directors is expected to be completed in three years.

Members interested in nominating a colleague or hoping to serve on the Board may wish to attend a webinar on January 9, 2019, 8 p.m. ET. Contact Laura Butler at boardnominations@ncra.org to learn more about the webinar. Read more information on nominations.

Other amendments that were put into effect following the 2018 Annual Business Meeting do not affect the election procedure.








CEO’s Report on spring 2018 NCRA Board Meeting

By Marcia Ferranto

NCRA’s meeting of the Board of Directors last week marked tremendous progress as we work together toward accomplishing the mission of the National Court Reporters Association. Our Board is hard at work moving the vision of the organization forward. I am pleased to share some of the accomplishments of the meeting.

Several NCRA members chose to attend and state their position in person regarding third-party contracting. The session was live captioned for members interested in the topic so they could follow along. After hearing from a professional cross section of our membership, including firm owners, freelancers, state association leaders, attorneys, and leaders from larger multi-service companies, the Board announced NCRA’s official position on the topic:

  1. NCRA’s government relations department will continue to support and assist our affiliated state associations and members in accomplishing their industry-related legislative objectives.
  2. NCRA will continue to offer resources and information to affiliated state associations and members regarding contracting legislation.
  3. NCRA will refrain from providing public testimony.

In new business, the Board and guest members warmly welcomed NCRA’s lobbyist, Erik Olson. Olson described the current political climate and how it is likely to affect outcomes over the coming two years, and how in 2018 we will begin to develop strategy to proactively influence a federal legislative agenda on behalf of court reporters around the nation.

I announced the launch of a quarterly Town Hall for NCRA members as a platform for me to engage directly with members who can call into a live meeting. The NCRA Town Halls will begin in April.

Following the conclusion of the Board meeting, we moved right into the final leg of our three-year strategic planning session. It is 90 percent complete, and I can share with you that the 2019–2021 Strategic Plan will be centered on three critical pillars:

  • Building and operating a sustainable business and financial model.
  • Positioning the profession and association for the future.
  • Increasing demand for NCRA certifications.

The strategic plan will be unveiled in August during the business meeting that will be held in conjunction with the 2018 NCRA Convention & Expo in New Orleans.

The NCRA Board meeting last week was my second opportunity as Executive Director and CEO to experience the passion and dedication of this incredible organization. I thank you for your warm welcome and continued support. Working together, the Board of Directors, state leaders, members, and staff will achieve great success through hard work and focused execution as we continue the work of the leaders before us to advance the profession and make NCRA the leading authority on court reporting and captioning.

Marcia Ferranto is the Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer of the National Court Reporters Association.








Nominations for NCRA Board of Directors sought

Serving on the NCRA Board of Directors is an excellent opportunity to use your leadership skills to help advance the premier organization that continues to empower the court reporting and captioning professions. As a Director, you will serve with others as fiduciaries to steer the organization towards a sustainable future by adopting sound, ethical, and legal governance and financial management policies as well as by making sure NCRA has adequate resources to advance its mission.

“Clearly the greatest benefit of serving on the NCRA Board of Directors is the personal satisfaction that you are giving back to a profession that has provided us a rewarding lifetime career,” said Debra Dibble, RDR, CRR, CRC, a freelance court reporter from Woodland, Utah, and NCRA’s Secretary-Treasurer.

“Serving on the NCRA Board provides an unequaled opportunity to be instrumental in protecting, developing, and shaping the future of our beloved profession. The NCRA Board creates an environment for personal development and growth through opportunities to both teach and learn, instruct and listen, grow individually while building others, and protecting the past while creating the future. The value cannot be measured nor calculated,” Dibble added.

Nominations and recommendations can be submitted to boardnominations@ncra.org by Jan. 19, 2018. As a courtesy, please contact your candidate directly prior to submitting his or her name.

Anyone interested in seeking future Board service can attend a no-obligation orientation webinar on Jan. 10 at 8 p.m. ET. This webinar will help you gain a better understanding of the process and expectations of serving on the Board. For more information about the orientation, contact lbutler@ncra.org.








2018 nominations sought; deadlines near

Nominations are now being accepted for the Fellows of the Academy of Professional Reporters, the NCRA Board of Directors, and the Distinguished Service Award. Now is the perfect time to step up and nominate yourself or a colleague to serve or be recognized for his or her commitment to the profession and to NCRA.

Fellows of the Academy of Professional Reporters

Members of the 2017 class of Fellows of the Academy of Professional Reporters was recognized at the 2017 Convention & Expo. Nominations for 2018 Fellows are due Dec. 31.

NCRA’s Council of the Academy of Professional Reporters is seeking nominations for its Fellows of the Academy of Professional Reporters (FAPR). The deadline to nominate a candidate is Dec. 31.

Membership in the Academy symbolizes excellence among NCRA members. The designation of FAPR represents an individual’s dedication to the court reporting and captioning professions and expresses the highest level of professional ethics. Candidates must have been actively reporting for at least 10 years and have attained distinction as measured by performance. This performance could include publication of important papers, creative contributions, service on committees or boards, teaching, and more.

“It is an honor to carry the distinction as a Fellow in my profession’s national association. Much of the time and energy devoted to my beloved profession and association has been behind the scenes; when I learned I had been awarded the Fellow, it let me know that my hard work and dedication had been not only noticed but appreciated,” said Sarah Nageotte, FAPR, RDR, CRR, CRC, an official court reporter from Jefferson, Ohio. Nageotte was inducted as a Fellow in 2017.

“There’s a quote that says, ‘Volunteers are not paid — not because they are worthless, but because they are priceless.’ Taking the time to recognize a colleague through a nomination is one way to say thank you for always giving for the betterment of all. If you don’t nominate someone deserving, who will?” added Nageotte, who is also an NCRA Past President.

To nominate an individual, view the full criteria and download a nomination form at NCRA.org/Fellows. For more information, contact Cynthia Bruce Andrews at candrews@ncra.org.

Board of Directors

Serving on the Board of Directors is an excellent opportunity to use your leadership skills to help advance the premier organization that continues to empower the court reporting profession. As a Director, you will serve with others as fiduciaries to steer the organization towards a sustainable future by adopting sound, ethical, and legal governance and financial management policies as well as by making sure NCRA has adequate resources to advance its mission.

The 2017-2018 NCRA Board of Directors

“After serving on NCRA committees and task forces, observing and respecting NCRA’s leaders, as well as holding several offices with my state association, I decided to challenge myself and seek a position on NCRA’s Board,” said R. Douglas Friend, FAPR, RDR, CRR, a freelance reporter an agency owner from Vancouver, Wash., and a Past President of NCRA.

“A joy of serving on the NCRA Board is attending state conventions and making presentations. Besides meeting reporters who became friends around North America, I also gathered confidence in public speaking. As a firm owner, this helped in speaking to groups of attorneys, legal assistants, and paralegals,” added Friend.

Nominations and recommendations can be submitted to boardnominations@ncra.org by Jan. 19, 2018. As a courtesy, please contact your candidate directly prior to submitting his or her name.

Anyone interested in seeking future Board service can attend a no-obligation orientation webinar on Jan. 10 at 8 p.m. ET. This webinar will help you gain a better understanding of the process and expectations of serving on the Board. For more information about the orientation, contact lbutler@ncra.org.

Distinguished Service Award

Nancy Varallo recognized with NCRA Distinguished Service Award

Nancy Varallo recognized with the 2017 NCRA Distinguished Service Award

NCRA’s Distinguished Service Award is often viewed as the pinnacle of a member’s career. It recognizes the distinguished work and service by an individual member for the benefit of the court reporting profession, including service to NCRA as a member, a committee member, a director, or an officer of the Association. Other displays of distinguished work include contributing to the JCR or service at a state court reporters association or in the field of public relations or public affairs. Award winners are recognized at the NCRA Convention & Expo.

“In 2015, at the NCRA Convention & Expo in New York City, I was humbled that I had been nominated and had been chosen to receive the DSA,” said Sandy VanderPol, FAPR, RMR, CRR, a freelancer and firm owner from Lotus, Calif.

“This award was such an honor, and I will always remember the ceremony and the many emotions that passed over me when my name was called. I tell you this because I want each of you to take the time to reflect upon what this award means to the recipient. Nominate a person you consider worthy, and be proud that you have been a part of the process,” she added.

Voting members of NCRA or of recognized court reporting associations may submit nominations through an online form, by email to dsa@ncra.org, or by mail to NCRA, Attn: DSA, 12030 Sunrise Valley Dr., Reston, VA 20191. Nominations must include information supporting why the nominee should be considered. DSA candidates cannot be an active member of the DSA Committee or the NCRA Board of Directors. The deadline to nominate a member for NCRA’s 56th Distinguished Service Award is Feb. 9.








Marcia C. Ferranto named NCRA Executive Director and CEO

NCRA has announced that Marcia C. Ferranto, a nonprofit executive with more than 25 years of experience, has accepted the position of NCRA CEO and Executive Director. Along with her experience, she brings vast knowledge in the areas of leadership, relationship building, membership growth, and finance.

“Ferranto’s energy and passion are contagious. Her respect for members and staff, her intelligence and financial acumen, and her fresh ideas grabbed the attention of the board,” said NCRA President Chris Willette, RDR, CRR, CRC.

Prior to joining NCRA, Ferranto served as President and CEO of the Women’s Transportation Seminar International and the Women’s Transportation Seminar Foundation in Washington, D.C. During her tenure with WTS, she worked closely nationally and internationally with the U.S. Departments of Transportation and Labor, as well as federal, state, and local officials.

Other highlights of her tenure include a 100 percent growth in the organization’s membership, significant increases in its sponsored events, an increase in leadership programs to aid local chapters, and the development of an executive leadership roundtable that helped WTS link its membership to some of the most influential women thought leaders in the industry.

Ferranto has experience as an independent consultant assisting companies and nonprofits with strategic development. She also has strong branding skills.

She holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Widener University in Chester, Penn., and is a graduate of the Museum Leadership Institute, Getty Leadership Institute. She has also served as a guest speaker at the New York University’s Master’s Program at the Steinhardt School of Education, Department of Art & Art Professions.

Read more.








NCRA member recognized

JCR: Journal of Court Reporting, TheJCR.com, JCR WeeklyOn Sept. 3, The Journal Gazette (Fort Wayne, Ind.) announced the election of NCRA member Tonya Kaiser, RPR, CMRS, to the NCRA Board of Directors. The announcement was generated by a press release issued by NCRA on Kaiser’s behalf.

Read more.








Webster court reporter elected to NCRA leadership

JCR: Journal of Court Reporting, TheJCR.com, JCR WeeklyThe Monroe County Post reported on Aug. 30 that Meredith Bonn, RPR, of Webster, N.Y., was elected to serve a three-year term on the Board of Directors for the National Court Reporters Association. The story was generated by a press release issued by NCRA on Bonn’s behalf.

Read more.