Join NCRA   |  Store  |  NCRA Online Sourcebook  |  FAQ  |  Resource Center  |  Contact Us
Meetings & Events

2017 NCRA Convention & Expo - Agenda: Saturday, Aug. 12, 2017


Daily Agenda

6:30–8 a.m.


Free breakfast:  Exclusive for those participants that are booked in the NCRA room block at Planet Hollywood AND registered for a Convention package or workshop.

Location: The London Club

7 a.m.–6 p.m.

Registration open

Location: Mezzanine Level

7:30–9 a.m.

School Owners and Administrators Breakfast and Roundtable By invitation only

Location: Mezzanine Level

 7:30–9 a.m.

Learning Zones (0.15 CEU per seminar)

Hot topics in ethics

Location: Celebrity 5

Presenters: Donna S. Cascio, FAPR, RDR, CMRS; and Jason Meadors, FAPR, RPR, CRR, CRC

Have you ever been in a professional dilemma and felt there was no answer? In this seminar, our panelists will address numerous hot-button ethical issues and how to handle them based on advisory opinions issued by NCRA's Committee on Professional Ethics (COPE).

Destination: High-tech courtroom

Location: Celebrity 6

Presenters: Charisse Kitt, RMR, CRI; Karla Sommer, RMR, CRR, CRC; and Douglas J. Zweizig, RDR, CRR

Learn how you, as an official reporter, can serve as the catalyst for transforming your daily work environment into a reporter-based high-tech courtroom. A panel of reporters and IT techies will share ideas and strategies that will enable every reporter – not just the super techie reporter – to be the facilitator that brings efficiency and productivity into a courtroom setting.

What lawyers want

Location: Celebrity 7

Presenters: Andre Lagomarsino and Catherine Teach, RPR, CRI

Advice to court reporters from a panel of attorneys/judges on how we can meet and exceed their expectations for depositions and the courtoom. How can we better prepare ourselves before a deposition, what questions we should ask about preferences and how to handle them, and the common mistakes court reporters may be making.

Intersteno–Berlin and beyond

Location: Celebrity 8

Presenters: Kelly Linkowski, RPR, CRR, CRC, CPE; Anissa R. Nierenberger, RPR, CRR, CRC, CRI; and Tori Pittman, FAPR, RDR, CRI

Have you ever wanted to see stenography machines from other countries? Are you interested in meeting reporters from other countries? Would you like the opportunity to travel and make business connections across the world? If so, this informational session about Intersteno could be for you! This session will be an exciting review of Intersteno’s 51st Congress that just happened in Berlin a few weeks ago. Presenters will share all the Congress highlights from general sessions and breakout sessions.

8 a.m.–5 p.m.

Expo Hall open Ticketed event

Location: Mezzanine Level

8:15 a.m.–5 p.m.

Student Learning Zone, Day 2

Location: Melrose 3 (unless otherwise indicated)

  • 8:15–9:45 a.m.:  How to compete with some of the best
    • Presenters: Ron Cook, FAPR, RDR, CRR, CRC; Chase Frazier, RMR, CRR, CRC; Clay Frazier, RMR, CRR; and Tami Frazier, RMR, CRR
    • Join the Fabulous Fraziers and realtime champ Ron Cook to talk about how they prepare for the Speed and Realtime Contests and how it can benefit your progress in school. Come get encouragement and learn some fun tips to help push you through your school journey.
  • 10–11:30 a.m.:  Online skills testing: See it for yourself
    • Presenter: Marybeth Everhart, RPR, CRI
    • By now you’ve heard that NCRA skills tests have been moved online. But, what exactly does that mean and how does it affect you, if at all? No doubt, you have lots of questions, so let’s try to answer them. In this seminar, Marybeth Everhart will review the entire online testing process, from registration to completion—soup to nuts, you might say. What equipment will you need? Where can you test? Who is ProctorU and how are they involved? For answers to these questions and more, you’ll want to attend this seminar!
  • 11:45 a.m.–1:45 p.m.:  NCRA Awards Luncheon
  • 2–3:30 p.m.:  Vendor/Expo Hall
  • 4–5:30 p.m.:  Attend regular learning zone session of your choice
8:30 a.m.–5 p.m. 

Certified Legal Video Specialist (CLVS) Production Exams

Location: Santa Monica 3

8:30 a.m.–5 p.m.

Certified Legal Video Specialist (CLVS) Seminar, Day 2 - Mandatory Day (0.65 CEU)

Location: Sunset 2

Presenters: Various faculty members of the CLVS Council

This mandatory day will cover the CLVS Code of Ethics, the CLVS Standards for Video Depositions, and applicable Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Attendees will come away with a comprehensive understanding of the role of video in a deposition environment.

 8:30 a.m.–5 p.m.

Teachers Workshop (0.15 CEU per session)

Location: Sunset 1

  • 8:30–10 a.m.:   Creating a positive learning environment through effective classroom management
    • Presenter: Len Sperling, CRI
    • Proper classroom management is essential for instructor efficacy and student learning. This presentation will offer approaches to creating a positive learning environment in the classroom. Participants will also learn classroom management techniques when intervention is necessary that can be applied to most classroom situations.
  • 10–11:30 a.m.:  Realtime writer grant roundtable: The benefits of grants and beyond
    • Presenters: Lisa Jo Hubacher, RPR, CRI; Kelly Moranz, CRI; Lori Rapozo, RPR, CRI, CCR; and Sidney Weldele-Wallace, CRI, CPE
    • Join this esteemed panel for an overview of realtime writer grant activities and the impacts/innovations it can have on court reporting programs nationwide.
  • 11:45 a.m.-1:45 p.m.:  NCRA Awards Luncheon. Ticketed event
  • 2–3:30 p.m.:  Court reporting school and onboarding: A firm owners' perspective
    • Presenters: Rhonda V. Jensen, RDR, CRR, CMRS, CSR, CME; and Allison L. Sedakis, CSR
    • Come learn how firms onboard new court reporters to help them be successful. Also participate in a lively discussion of what firms would like to see taught in the court reporting curriculum.
  • 4–5:30 p.m.:  Dynamic experiential learning
    • Presenters: Kurt Hayes, John Kolacinski, and Katherine McNally, CLVS, CRI
    • This seminar is designed for all court reporting programs that will be in attendance at the NCRA Convention. Due to the accreditation issues private court reporting schools are having, we have been approached by many public and private schools who would like us to work with them delivering an online court reporting program to provide broader access and grow their program.
 9–10 a.m.

Coffee break with exhibitors

Location: Expo Hall, Mezzanine Level

10–11:30 a.m.

Learning Zones (0.15 CEU per seminar)

Finding your voice: How to take control of your environment

Location: Celebrity 6

Presenters: Nancy Bistany, RPR; and Lisa Knight, FAPR, RDR, CRR

This session will cover how to interrupt (practice how to interrupt), how to take control of the room (when to speak up), how to set the tone (speak how you want the attorneys to speak), how to handle requests rough draft requests after a tough day, and how to read a room.

Open-source for steno: Free online web tools for a smoother workflow

Location: Celebrity 7

Presenters: Chase L. Frazier, RMR, CRR, CRC; and Lindsey Stoker, CRC

In this session, we will go beyond the standard CAT software and explore free online tools that solve many of the issues participants face while on the job. We will also explore the open-soure community and how that can benefit our personal and professional lives.

What exactly does it take to become a broadcast captioner

Location: Celebrity 8

Presenters: Cathy L.E. Holiday, RMR, CRR, CRC; Darlene Parker, FAPR, RPR; Heidi Thomas, FAPR, RDR, CRR, CRC

The requirements for transitioning into broadcast captioning will be covered, including skills, equipment, and best practices.

Beyond English

Location: Wilshire A/B

Presenter: Stanley Sakai, CRC, CSR

As English-language reporters in a world where our own language prevails as lingua franca, we are commonly sheltered from the diversity of stenographic systems devised for languages other than English. In this seminar, we will take a general look at the inner workings of a variety of foreign-language systems, as well as a more in-depth analysis of writing machine stenography in Spanish. No previous knowledge of Spanish required! Just open ears and open minds!

Vendor showcase seminar: Dreams becoming reality with Stenovations

Location: Celebrity 5

Presenters: Johnny Jackson

The quest for creating the finest steno keyboard has reached another level. The Zenith keyboard and software have been completely enhanced over the past year Attend this showcase and hear all about the endless possibilities and what the future holds for Stenovations.

11:45 a.m.–1:45 p.m.

Awards Luncheon Ticketed event

Location: Celebrity 1-4

2–3:30 p.m.

Learning Zones (0.15 CEU per seminar)

NCRA Skills Tests life cycle: From creation to passing with flying colors

Location: Celebrity 5

Presenter: Debbie Kriegshauser, FAPR, RMR, CRR, CLVS

How to conquer and pass NCRA Skills Tests! Join Debbie Kriegshauser, a member of our Test Advisory Council and Qualified Grader, as she takes you through the entire skills test life cycle. This informative session will give you an inside look at the process and how you can give yourself the advantage to pass.

Technological advancements to help you sell transcript copies

Location: Celebrity 6

Presenter: Caroline Lloyd, Esq.

Reporters, wouldn’t you rather have your deposition archive collect dollars instead of dust? For attorneys, there is no better evidence than a certified deposition transcript because it can be admitted into trial. A certified deposition transcript is the “smoking gun” of evidence that could alter the outcome of an entire trial. As we all know, only a court reporter may sell a certified deposition transcript. Knowing the huge demand attorneys have for certified deposition transcripts, and knowing that only a court reporter can sell it to them, why isn’t the court reporting industry taking advantage of the significant revenue stream that could be gained from selling past deposition transcripts? Because attorneys do not know where to find the court reporter, that’s why. There is no way for an attorney to look up an expert/non-expert witness and find out which court reporter owns their prior deposition transcript. This gap between the attorney and the court reporter creates a problem for both sides wherein the attorney cannot locate the deposition needed to represent the client, and the court reporter loses out on the money to be made from the transcript sale.

How to write your best for test day

Location: Celebrity 7

Presenter: Ed Varallo, FAPR, RPR, RMR, CRR

Everyone is nervous on test day.  You can’t banish nervousness.  The trick is to write well despite being nervous — and you can do that!  Let six-time National Speed Contest Champion Ed Varallo (no stranger to test day nerves!) describe for you the several simple, common-sense techniques he has discovered that allow you to be at your best on test day — no matter what.

Tech tips and tricks

Location: Celebrity 8

Presenters: Nancy Bistany, RPR; and Keith Lemons, FAPR, RPR, CRR

Join two of our favorite Techsters as they share their latest tech tips and tricks.  They will walk you through the best customization for Windows for realtime, best laptops for CAT software, routers and whatever the latest tech is they have discovered.

2:30–5:30 p.m.

Certified Realtime Reporter (CRR) Boot Camp (0.3 CEU)

Location: Wilshire AB

Presenter: Kathryn Sweeney, FAPR, RMR, CRR

Think you are ready to take the CRR Exam? Want to make sure? Join Kathryn Sweeney as she guides you through advice and helpful tips and tricks to help you pass the CRR Exam. It is highly recommended that attendees bring their equipment to this session for maximum benefits.

4–5:30 p.m. 

Learning Zones (0.15 CEU per seminar)

Allocatur, Al Cotter, Alligator – What did he just say?

Location: Celebrity 5

Presenter: Melanie Humphrey-Sonntag, FAPR, RDR, CRR, CRC

Join Melanie Humphrey-Sonntag for an interactive seminar on legal terminology often heard in your daily job as a reporter. This is a must attend seminar full of fun and learning!

There’s an app for that

Location: Celebrity 6

Presenter: Lynette L. Mueller, FAPR, RDR, CRR

We will discuss several apps for the court reporter to help be more productive in everyday job tasks. Also to help solve issues that may crop up on the go.

Ditch the transcripts: Captioning is for you

Location: Celebrity 7

Presenter: Anissa R. Nierenberger, RPR, CRR, CRC, CRI

No transcripts, no long commutes, no last-minute cancellations, no overnight rush jobs, no changing your vacation plans at the last minute due to a transcript order… doesn’t this sound like a dream?   Your new lifestyle awaits! The need for both types of captioners is on the rise! We’ll start with five things to improve your realtime. Let’s move your career forward today!

Hot button issues for the official reporter

Location: Celebrity 8

Presenters: Sheri Piontek, RMR, CRR, CRC; Heidi Thomas, FAPR, RDR, CRR, CRC; and Julie C. Wilson, RPR, CRI

The official reporter providing CART services in the courtroom, ownership of transcripts, and the buy-in of all official reporters of providing realtime are just some of the hot button issues that currently official reporters are dealing with or will be dealing with sooner rather than later.  Panel members will share the experience that their respective courts have had with some of the hot button issues, followed by an open mic opportunity to share challenges and solutions that audience members have encountered and implemented. Be prepared for a lively discussion!

7:30–11:30 p.m.

President's Party Ticketed event

Location: Celebrity 1-4

 Please note that all sessions and/or times are tentative and subject to change.