Heidi Thomas Appointed as Director of NCRA
September 29, 2011, Washington, D.C. – Heidi Thomas, a national broadcast captioner based in Atlanta, has been appointed as a director to the Board of the National Court Reporters Association (NCRA). NCRA is a 19,000-member association representing court reporters and providers of captioning and realtime transcription services for the legal, broadcasting, business, government, and educational communities throughout the United States (http://www.ncra.org/). Thomas began serving a one-year term on the NCRA Board earlier this month after being appointed to fill a vacancy.
Thomas works as a national broadcast captioner of live television, and her experience includes work with ABC, NBC, CBS, ESPN, the Tennis Channel, and the Golf Channel, along with WAGA and WSB locally in Atlanta. Indeed, Thomas was part of the captioning team for the 2000 summer Olympics on MSNBC.
Thomas holds five separate credentials from NCRA, in addition to holding the distinction of having been named a Fellow of the Academy of Professional Reporters, which is one of the highest honors bestowed within the court reporting profession. She has been a court reporter since 1978 and a CART provider/captioner since 1989. Realtime and CART reporting allow stenographic court reporters to filter their traditional shorthand through a translation program to appear almost instantaneously on a video screen or monitor, which allows those who are deaf or hard of hearing to participate equally in such activities as legal proceedings, classroom lectures, and television broadcasts. Indeed, stenographic court reporters serve as the backbone of the live-broadcast captioning, a specialty that has drawn particular interest over the past year after President Obama signed the Communications and Television Accessibility Act into law.
A frequent lecturer and instructor within the court reporting profession, Thomas’s appointment to the NCRA Board of Directors caps a long history of volunteer service. She is a former director and secretary of the Georgia Shorthand Reporters Association as well as a former member of the Board of Court Reporting for the State of Georgia. In addition, Thomas has filled a variety of volunteer roles for NCRA, having served six years on its Realtime Certification Committee while playing a key role in writing NCRA certification exams.