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Meetings & Events

2018 NCRA Legislative Bootcamp - Speakers

Speaker Bios

2018 NCRA Legislative Boot Camp
March 11–13, 2018

Regency B Room, Reston Hyatt Regency, Reston, VA



Cynthia Bruce Andrews

Cynthia Bruce Andrews, M.S.Ed

Cynthia Andrews is the NCRA Senior Director of Education and Certification. In this role, she oversees development and delivery of NCRA’s virtual mentoring program, school support programs, and certification maintenance as well as content development for NCRA’s skills and written knowledge tests. A strategic executive with over 20 years of experience, Cynthia has held leadership positions in enrollment services at University of Maryland University College, American Council on Education, and Old Dominion University. She has a solid record in higher education administration, post-secondary accreditation, and corporate, military, and adult education with well-developed skills in program management, policy development, certification reviews, and staff development.  Cynthia holds an M.S. in higher education administration and a B.S. in human services counseling from Old Dominion University.

Matthew Barusch

Matthew Barusch

Matthew Barusch is the NCRAs State Government Relations Manager. Prior to NCRA, Matthew worked as legislative associate for government affairs firm Stateside Associates, analyzing and monitoring issue-based legislation. He gained political experience working for a congressional campaign in New York and as staff in the Arizona State Senate. Matthew grew up in Saratoga Springs, N.Y., and has received a bachelor's degree in political science from State University at New York at Plattsburgh and a master’s degree in public administration from Arizona State University.

John Brandon

John Brandon, RPR, LSR

John Brandon has been a court reporter since 1975. John owned and operated Brandon Smith Reporting & Video from 1982 to 2013, when he and his son, Jacob, sold their interest to Huseby, Inc. He was also an official court reporter in the United States District Court from 1986 to 2004. John has been a member of NCRA since 1976 and was a founding member of the Board of Registration of Court Reporters in Connecticut. He served from the board’s inception in 2002, including eight years as chair, until it was dissolved by the Connecticut legislature on Jan. 1, 2018. John is currently the president of the Connecticut Court Reporters Association, his third time serving in that position, and is working with the association’s lobbyists in an effort to reinstate licensure for Connecticut’s court reporters.

James Cool

James C. Cool

James "Jimmy" Cool is a litigator and trial attorney, whose practice emphasizes serious or catastrophic personal injuries, commercial disputes between closely held companies, professional administrative or regulatory action, and a variety of matters involving the rights of public employees. Jimmy's practice is not defined by a particular area of law or subject matter; rather, he focuses on representing good people — ranging from families and individuals to closely held companies and professional organizations such as the Arizona Court Reporters Association — who need responsive legal guidance. His mission is to counsel his clients about their options and to work together to achieve the outcome or resolution that best meets their goals. Jimmy also serves as a neutral mediator in cases involving personal injuries and business disputes between and among small companies.

Marcia Ferranto

Marcia Ferranto

Marcia Ferranto is known in the nonprofit world for her reputation as a motivational and transformative leader. As NCRA Executive Director and CEO, she is responsible for the overall administration, management, and operations of both the National Court Reporters Association and its associated charity, the National Court Reporters Foundation. She has the overall responsibility for ensuring the association’s growth, operational efficiency, and financial stability, including oversight of a $6.5 million budget and a staff of 30. Prior to leading NCRA, Marcia served as the president and CEO of WTS International and WTS Foundation where she doubled the association’s size, created a corporate partner program, raised millions of dollars, and expanded WTS’s reach throughout the industry and around the globe. Prior to leading WTS International, Marcia served as the executive director of the Kalmar Nyckel Foundation in Delaware and also held posts with the Delaware Art Museum, including acting director, chief financial officer, and director of finance and human resources.

Shelley Row

Shelley Row, P.E.

Named by Inc. as one of the top 100 leadership speakers, Shelley Row, P.E., is an engineer and former government and association executive. Shelley’s leadership work focuses on developing insightful leaders who know that data alone is not enough.  Her work grows your bottom line through enhanced decision-making, motivation, and teaming.  Shelley combines executive experience, results from interviews with more than three dozen executives, and neuroscience to bring this powerful skill to you.  Her work has been featured in Forbes, Fast Company, HuffPost Business, and Smartblog on Leadership. She studied with the NeuroLeadership Institute, is certified with the International Coach Federation and Business DNA Behavior, and is the incoming president of the National Speakers Association, Washington, D.C., chapter. She is the author of four books, including Think Less, Live More: Lessons from a Recovering Over-Thinker. Learn more at and follow her on Twitter @ShelleyRow.

Jacqueline Sly

Jacqueline Sly

Jacqueline Sly served in the South Dakota House of Representatives from 2008 to 2016. During her last two terms, she was chairwoman of the House Education Committee. During the 2015 interim, she was co-chair of the Governor’s Blue Ribbon Task Force on K-12 education funding. During her legislative terms, Jacqueline also served as co-chair of the education committees for the Midwest Legislative Conference and the Council of State Governments. She was on the Board of Directors for Women in Government and was a commissioner for the Education Commission of the States. Jacqueline was a teacher for 37 years. She received her B.S. in elementary and special education from Northern State University and her M.S. in curriculum and instruction from Black Hills State University. Her teaching career included special education, elementary, middle school, and alternative education throughout South Dakota.

Christine Wiillette

Christine J. Willette, RDR, CRR, CRC

Christine J. Willette, RDR, CRR, CRC, has been a court reporter since 1985 and is the owner of Willette Court Reporting in Wausau, Wis., where she is also an active reporter. She has been a member of NCRA since 1985 and has served on its Board as a Director for four years, has also served as Vice President and President-Elect, and is currently serving as President. Prior to serving on the NCRA Board, Chris was elected to the National Committee of State Associations (NCSA) Governing Board and was also the Wisconsin NCSA delegate for five years. She has participated in the NCRA Legislative Boot Camp eight times and has attended NCRA leadership training on five occasions. Chris has also attended the American Society of Association Executive leadership training. Chris has served at all levels on the Wisconsin Court Reporters Association Board of Directors from 2003 to 2011.