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Volunteer Spotlight - NCRA/NCRF (August 2006)

Image: Denise FritzView additional Volunteer Spotlights
“We all know how busy life gets. Where do we find the time to do volunteer work? It usually has to happen with the assistance of others. With support from my family and my boss, I was given the opportunity and the honor to transcribe stories from the Library of Congress Veterans History Project. These stories are snapshots of individual veteran’s personal experiences, and court reporters across the nation are transcribing them in an effort to preserve and share the history of our country. I hope fellow court reporters will participate in this new initiative to record the stories of veterans in their lives and then transcribe them. Be a part of our country’s history, and in doing so create a history for our organization.”

-- Denise Fritz, Sheboygan, Wisconsin

Court Reporters and VHP: A Unique Partnership

The National Court Reporters Foundation (NCRF) and members of the National Court Reporters Association (NCRA) are transcribing the recorded interviews from the Library of Congress Veterans History Project (VHP), ensuring the stories of our nation's veterans are preserved in yet another format--the written word. “Court reporters are simply fulfilling their stated vision, which is, in part, 'to afford society total access to the spoken word,'" commented B.J. Shorak, deputy executive director of NCRF.

NCRA Logo"Transcripts allow us to offer the one-of-a-kind stories from the VHP collection to more and more people,” said Bob Patrick, director of VHP." Each transcript provided by NCRF/NCRA is digitized and available via the VHP Web site,” he continued.

Shorak said, “Tawni Kind is the visionary court reporter, and wife of Rep. Ron Kind (D-WI), who created the relationship between NCRF/NCRA and VHP. Our professional association and foundation feel it is important to support public service programs, so we eagerly partnered with the Library of Congress when Ms. Kind presented a plan to transcribe the personal recollections of veterans housed in the VHP collections.” NCRA members contribute to this project as they earn continuing education credits toward their professional court reporter certification.

NCRF Logo"The highlights for me have been the opportunities for NCRA members to attend VHP-related events and transcribe stories on the spot. Our members tend to be civic-minded, so this has been a welcome opportunity for them to serve their community,” added Beth Kilker, NCRF’s VHP coordinator.

Earlier this year, NCRF/NCRA began an initiative to complete 1,000 transcribed VHP interviews by Veterans’ Day 2006. “The court reporters are close to reaching that goal,” offers Patrick. “We are indebted to NCRF/NCRA for helping VHP ensure the personal stories of these national heroes are preserved in written format for current and future generations.”

What’s next for NCRF/NCRA? “We’re excited to announce a new initiative for court reporters to record AND transcribe the interviews of veterans in their own lives—family members, neighbors, and colleagues. Our members came up with the idea, and we support them in every endeavor,” smiled Shorak.

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  August 10, 2010
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