Lori A. Wells, TCRA President
I am now a little more than two months into my presidency, and I have to say that I am very impressed with my Board members. The most important thing I have learned is that this Board is chockfull of talent, experience, and professional respect for one another.
One evening, I decided to read over the biographies and add up the number of years this Board has as professional court reporters. It was over 258 years’ worth. Amazing! I feel both blessed and fortunate to be surrounded by such knowledge and talent.
They bring to the table their own points of view and perspectives, a positive attitude, and a desire to work together for the common goal of doing what is best for this association. They do not shy away from a challenge -- or two.
I have read many articles stressing the importance of getting involved in your state and national association, via volunteering time and talent(s). It is evident that my Board members take that to heart. They stay on top of the issues important to this profession. I consider them not only guardians of the record, but guardians of this great profession. Rest assured, this association is in good hands.
Please take time to visit the website and familiarize yourself with this Board and their committees. Attend the annual convention and talk with the Board members. They are true professionals with a wealth of knowledge and experience, so do not hesitate to tap into that vein.
With my fellow Board members at my side, I feel confident that my presidential journey is going to be a productive one.
Deborah King, Essay Winner
Each year TCRA sponsors a scholarship for court reporting students. Students may participate in the program by writing a short essay. The student scholarships are awarded to deserving students each year at our Annual Convention. This year we had some great essays submitted from several students. It is so inspiring to read their essays and to hear the passion and enthusiasm in their words.
Deborah King is our 2014 recipient of the Tiffany Brosemer Student Scholarship Essay Contest. Congratulations, Deborah!
Read Deborah's essay below.
"Why I Want to Be a Court Reporter"
Why in the world do I want to be a court reporter?! Trust me, this is a question that I have asked myself many, many times in the years since I began school. There have been times over the last four years when I have been so close to quitting, just throwing in the towel, because I have not progressed with my speed as quickly as I had hoped. Like countless other court reporting students, I have had times of frustration, exasperation, and oh so many tears.
It is during these times that I sit down and have a heart-to-heart with myself about why I would want to continue on a path that is so very difficult, so skill-oriented, that very few actually see the end. Ultimately, it comes down to passion. I have developed a passion for steno over the past four years. Albeit a love/hate relationship, it is a strong relationship nonetheless. I know this because, at those times where I become frustrated and force myself to take a break from the machine, I absolutely cannot stop thinking about it. When I am reading or watching TV, I find myself constantly thinking about how I would write that word in steno or telling myself to make a mental note of a difficult word for future reference.
When I am on my machine practicing or testing, I feel at home. My skill is not nearly at the level I would like it to be, but the process of developing that skill and seeing the progress is addictive to me. The feeling of having passed a test is like no other. My family and friends are happy for me, but they cannot truly understand my elation of passing one test when I have failed hundreds before.This passion for steno is what keeps me going down this path - that and the knowledge that, once I attain my speed and pass my certification, I will be part of an elite group of court reporters, captioners, and CART providers who have all traveled down that same path and made it. Over the last four years, I have realized that ultimately it does not matter how long it takes you to get down the path, as long as you do not get off. The reward at the end will be worth the work it took to get there.
The Tennessee Court Reporters Association (TCRA) was founded in 1949. Our association is a volunteer organization made up of an Executive Board and, also, comprises two Directors from each of the three divisions of our state.
Per our current bylaws:
The members of this Association shall strive to establish and maintain a proper standard of proficiency in the profession of court reporting, to establish and maintain a proper standard of professional ethics, to promote friendly interaction and good feeling among the members of the Association, to promote enactment of just and equitable laws upon the subject of court reporting, to protect the public against the imposition of incompetent and unethical court reporters, and to promote by all proper and lawful means, and consistent with the public interest, the legitimate interests of professional court reporters in the State of Tennessee.
Tenn. Code Ann. § 20-9-604 established the Tennessee Board of Court Reporting (TBCR). According to the TBCR website: Beginning July 1, 2010, court reporters must be licensed to engage in court reporting in the state of Tennessee. This board will issue court reporter licenses, conduct disciplinary inquiries for ethical violations, ensure completion of continuing education requirements and maintain a registry of court reporters.
Your TCRA Board has always and will continue to bring our members the most current and up-to-date court reporting information and news available as we receive it. As our members are aware, our avenues of communication are varied: annual conventions, regional seminars, e-blasts, website, quarterly newsletters, Facebook page, and Twitter! Our state association can boast and be proud that we are one of the few state associations in the country that is so technologically advanced.
The TBCR was established to prescribe the qualifications of court reporters and to issue licenses to persons who demonstrate their ability and fitness for the licenses. If anyone has a question about licensure, continuing education guidelines, reporting guidelines, inactive status, or reporter complaints, your questions must be directed to the TBCR.