Court reporting cited as top career choice without needing a four-year degree

An article posted by PayScale Career News on March 3 ranked court reporting as a top second career that doesn’t require a four-year degree. The article states that the profession is expected to grow 10 percent over the next decade, citing the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The article also refers readers to NCRA’s website to find a certified program in their area.

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New video launched to support Take Note campaign, Court Reporting & Captioning Week

NCRA has announced the addition of a new 30-second video to the cache of resources already available to support its Take Note campaign and 2015 Court Reporting & Captioning Week happening Feb. 15 through Feb. 21. The trendy and edgy animated video was funded by NCRF and is available for download at the and websites.

“NCRF is pleased to support NCRA’s exciting Take Note campaign and specifically the creation of the hip, new video geared toward today’s career-discerning youth,” said NCRF Chair Jan Ballman, RPR, CMRS. “The Foundation’s Trustees understand the importance of increasing awareness of the court reporting and captioning professions and are excited to be involved in this fabulous initiative.”

In addition to a generic version, a second version of the video allows schools to customize the last frame by inserting their name and location. The video is expected to be shared with hundreds of potential new court reporting students throughout the nation during Court Reporting & Captioning Week.

“Court Reporting & Captioning Week provides the perfect backdrop for premiering the video and making it available to NCRA members, state associations, firms, and schools. All are encouraged to post and share it on social media, as well as use it as a tool when presenting court reporting at high school career days and other events,” Ballman added.

“NCRA is grateful for the Foundation’s generous support of this latest resource in its arsenal of tools to help spread the word about the many benefits the court reporting profession offers as well as the positive employment outlook future holds,” said NCRA President Sarah E. Nageotte, RDR, CRR, CBC.

“Contributions by NCRA members and others to the Foundation ensure resources and tools such as this exciting new video are available to help support this wonderful and unique profession,” she added.

Throughout NCRA’s 2015 Court Reporting & Captioning Week, court reporters, captioners, firms, state association, and court reporting schools across the nation and Canada will host a variety of activities to help showcase the profession and to raise public awareness of the growing number of career opportunities the field has to offer.

NCRA has provided an array of resources to assist members and schools including  press release templates, media pitches, and more available at NCRA’s Court Reporting & Captioning Week resources page, as well as  a variety of informational materials such as a summary of the court reporting profession, a PowerPoint presentation, logos, ads, web banners, and general marketing elements at The new 30-second video is available at both sites.

Take advantage of more resources to help mark 2015 National Court Reporting & Captioning Week

In less than two weeks, NCRA’s 2015 Court Reporting & Captioning Week will kick2015 CRCW off, and this year there are double the resources available to help celebrate at the and websites. Across the nation and Canada, court reporters, captioners, firms, state associations, and court reporting schools will host a variety of activities to help showcase the profession and to raise public awareness of the growing number of career opportunities the field has to offer.

In addition to press release templates, media pitches, and more available at NCRA’s Court Reporting & Captioning Week resources page, additional materials can be found at, such as a summary of the court reporting profession, a PowerPoint presentation, logos, ads, web banners, and general marketing elements.

The Take Note site also features information for parents and school counselors about the profession as well as information about court reporting schools. State court reporting associations and schools can also take advantage of matching funds to assist them with advertising and other marketing costs.

A number of state court reporting associations have already announced plans to celebrate the week. One organization set to celebrate is the Hawaii Court Reporters and Captioners Association, which will host a luncheon featuring NCRA President Sarah Nageotte, RDR, CRR, CBC, who will spotlight the Association’s Take Note Campaign.

The Wisconsin Court Reporters Association has reported that Gov. Scott Walker has already proclaimed Feb. 15-21, 2015, as Wisconsin Court Reporting & Captioning Week, and the New York State Court Reporters Association has announced plans to host a meet-and-greet event at the Nassau County Bar Association. The state association also plans to hold a Realtime Training Day at no cost during the week.

Learn more about how to celebrate 2015 National Court Reporting & Captioning Week and access the latest resources at NCRA’s Court Reporting & Captioning Week  page or at Be sure to share with NCRA how you plan to help mark this year’s event by sending information and photos to

NCRA members embrace #GivingTuesday

#GivingTuesdayNCRA wants to thank the many members who celebrated #GivingTuesday by devoting their resources to supporting the future of the profession.

NCRA’s Education Department reported a spike in the number of members volunteering to join its Virtual Mentor Program on #GivingTuesday.

“Giving back always pays. It’s the whole ‘paying it forward’ or Golden Rule philosophy,” said NCRA member Kathy  A. Cortopassi, RPR, RMR, CRR, CCP, CBC, from Crown Point, Ind., who was one of ten NCRA members to sign on to the Virtual Mentor Program on #GivingTuesday.

“I don’t expect to gain; I expect to help. Help my profession. Help spread positive about our profession. Help potential rock stars join our ranks,” she said about volunteering. Cortopassi, who is president of Voice to Print Captioning, LLC, and QualCap, LLC, also holds the Realtime Systems Administrator certificate issued by NCRA.

BowStern, the public relations group handling NCRA’s TakeNote campaign, also reported a spike in downloads on Tuesday. The TakeNote materials include logos, flyers, customizable ads, and photos for social media.

#GivingTuesday, the Tuesday following Thanksgiving, provides an opportunity to support a favorite charity during the holiday season.

CNBC showcases court reporting as career

Sarah on NewsCNBC aired a story in its career segment showcasing court reporting as a career and highlighting the coming need for qualified candidates to fill jobs over the next five years. The story features NCRA President Sarah Nageotte, RDR, CRR, CBC; NCRA member and student Katherine Schilling; and Margaret Ortiz, CRI, director of the West Valley College in Saratoga, Calif., discussing the benefits of the profession including potential earning, flexible benefits, travel opportunities, and court reporting programs.

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NCRA and NCRF participate in #GivingTuesday

#GivingTuesday NCRA members and staff are all part of the service economy. NCRA members are keepers of the record, and NCRA staff serves its members. The profession has service in its blood, so NCRA is encouraging all members and staff to take part in #GivingTuesday on Dec. 2.

What is #GivingTuesday?

#GivingTuesday, an annual day of giving following Black Friday and Cyber Monday, was created in 2011 to empower a new community of philanthropists. #GivingTuesday is based on the concept that anyone, anywhere, can be a philanthropist. Participants don’t have to be billionaires to participate, and they don’t have to give funds. Giving can mean money, time, advocacy, or education.

On Dec. 2, NCRA are members encouraged to participate on #GivingTuesday

1. Donate to NCRF by calling 800-272-6272.

NCRF raises funds throughout the year to support programs created to benefit the greater court reporting community. NCRF also awards four scholarships and grants to court reporting achievers each year.

2. Become a virtual mentor by completing this form.

NCRA is committed to excellence both in the court reporting profession and in the next generation of court reporters. To this end, the Virtual Mentor Program is one way to bring court reporters and students together, so students can get the guidance and encouragement they need and today’s court reporters can nurture the future of court reporting.

3. Download brochures and posters.

Put up posters at local high schools and community colleges. Do a presentation about becoming a court reporter for high school students, parents, and/or school counselors. Talk to a neighbor or friend about court reporting careers.

4. 30 more ways to give back on #GivingTuesday



Buffalo Law Journal reports court reporters are wanted

An article in the Nov. 3 Buffalo Law Journal features an interview with a professor from Alfred State College’s court reporting program discussing the future need for court reporters and captioners. The article also refers to NCRA’s  Take Note campaign.

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NCRA Kindle Fire winner announced

More prizes available for membership renewal

A record number of members have renewed their 2015 membership in October. These renewals were driven in part by a chance to win a Kindle Fire.

NCRA membership renewal Kindle Fire winner

The lucky winner is Michelle Wade of Huntington Beach, Calif. She has been a freelance reporter for 10 years after graduating from the South Coast College of Court Reporting. She keeps up her NCRA membership for several reasons: “Number one, of course, is it keeps me informed on all aspects of our industry: legislation, education, and technology. It’s great for resources. I have my E&O and equipment insurance through NCRA and just recently downloaded speed audio. Basically, NCRA makes my life a little easier. Thanks to everyone at the NCRA for all they do to support our industry.”

Renew before Dec. 1 and be entered to win

Members still have a chance to be rewarded for renewing before Dec. 1. NCRA will give away one Coach wristlet on Nov. 10, Nov. 17, Nov. 24, and Dec. 1. All members who have renewed before these dates will have their name entered into a drawing to win one of these four Coach wristlets.

NCRA membership cards

In an effort to embrace online technology, NCRA will only send electronic membership cards to members via email. Members can expect to receive their membership card within approximately two weeks of renewing if they have a valid email address and have not previously opted out of Constant Contact email messaging.

NCRA continues to work for its members

Online testing to begin in 2015 – In 2014, NCRA answered the call from members to provide more testing opportunities at a lower cost and on a more flexible schedule. By partnering with Realtime Learning Systems (myRealtimeCoach) and ProctorU, NCRA will begin offering members online testing for the RPR, RMR, CRR, CBC, and CCP skills tests in 2015.

Court Reporting Take Note: NCRA’s National Campaign – NCRA launched a national publicity campaign aimed at supporting the future of court reporting. Based on independently commissioned research by Ducker Worldwide, the Take Note campaign targets prospective court reporting students with five key messages: job security, earning potential, flexibility of schedule, the ability to help others, and the overwhelming need for 5,500 court reporters in the next five years.

More JCR content online – For the first-time ever, NCRA delivered nearly instantaneous information about the 2014 Annual Convention & Expo. News stories, session highlights, and photos were uploaded to and complemented by NCRA’s social media outlets throughout the event.

New educational content at NCRA events – NCRA’s committees continue on the path of consistently improving the quality of educational sessions and networking opportunities offered at annual events such as NCRA’s TechCon, Firm Owners Executive Conference, Legal Video Conference, and Annual Convention & Expo. This has resulted in a steady rise in member satisfaction.

Increased online education opportunities – NCRA has expanded its first-class educational programming via webinars and e-seminars vetted to ensure they meet the needs of the marketplace. New online webinars and e-seminars were added each month for members to purchase, view, and earn CEUs.

Take Note campaign continues to pick up traction

NCRA’s Take Note campaign, launched last month to push the court reporting profession into the national spotlight, continues to spark the interest of media outlets nationwide. Fox News became the latest media outlet to showcase the profession’s growing employment opportunities in a special report on companies hiring that aired Oct. 7 on its Fox & Friends program. The reporter notes in the video the findings by research firm Ducker Worldwide that an additional 5,500 jobs are expected to open up across the country in the next five years. Fox & Friends is currently the #1 ranked morning show, according to cable news ratings. NCRA’s Take Note campaign was built around the industry outlook findings to support the future of court reporting through national advertising and public relations outreach. The program targets potential students and asks them to consider entering a profession that promises to offer an abundance of job opportunities in the coming years.

Watch the video.

What an honor it is to be your 107th NCRA President

As professionals, we continually pursue the path of greatness. We strive to perfect our skills and pursue additional credentials. We are always improving ourselves. We embrace new technology and progress forward in serving new markets. We are a timeless and ageless profession walking boldly into the future.

NCRA is proceeding in its execution of a powerful five-year plan, Vision 2018, which focuses on key issues and opportunities in the stenographic court reporting profession. We are prepared to go into the marketplace and tell today’s generation why court reporting is a career worthy of their time and consideration. The livelihood of our profession is dependent on our ability to resonate with potential students, and I am confident that we are going to make an impact with our efforts.

If you think back to the late-1990s and early-2000s, you may recall that headlines screamed of an immediate nursing shortage. The timing was ideal. The economy suffered after 9/11, and young people were concerned about securing full-time employment after college. The nursing profession took advantage of these conditions to talk about its unfilled need and assured the public that plenty of nursing jobs awaited those who received the necessary training. As a result, many pursued nursing degrees, despite the fact that nursing is a challenging career! Because of the potential for financial success and practically guaranteed job placement, parents across the country were more than happy to support their children’s decision to pursue nursing.

Let’s turn those headlines in our direction. The stenographic court reporting profession is facing a shortage as well. The independently produced Industry Outlook Report offers a startling look at what could happen if we do not produce enough skilled court reporters in just a few short years. It’s as simple as this: The demand for court reporting services will soon exceed what the current pool of court reporters can provide. There is demand for more court reporters. Our profession is not on life support. Our profession is strong. We can guarantee job placement and financial wellbeing for those who consider court reporting as a profession. And this is good news.

In fact, this may be the best news we have received in a long time.

We can prove to today’s parents that court reporting is a profession that their children should pursue. We belong to a profession that demands a closer look. We have something amazing to offer, and at just the right time, too. Traditional college degrees are expensive and don’t necessarily guarantee job placement. Millennials are seeking careers with flexibility and the opportunity to grow and learn something new every day. Most notably, they are fully equipped to be the technological leaders of the future workplace. It seems to me that court reporting is the perfect answer.

What we are going to do is launch a national campaign to put stenographic court reporting in the spotlight. It’s going to be shining bright on us in the months and years ahead. We are going to get more students into schools. We are going to work with our court reporting programs like never before in order to get more students out of those schools. This path ahead does bring challenges. It’s not going to happen overnight, and we have a lot of catching up to do, but I know we are heading in the right direction. [Ed. Note: More info on this project can be found here and in future issues of the JCR. Or visit for more details.]

I look forward to our paths crossing because together, we can guarantee our future shines bright. This is our time!


Sarah E. Nageotte, RDR, CRR, CBC, is NCRA’s President. She can be reached at This column is adapted from her presidential speech given during NCRA’s 2014 Convention & Expo in San Francisco, Calif.