Committees

NAJIT Committees

As a member-driven organization, NAJIT is only as strong as the involvement of its members. The following committees have been created to help in the advancement of the association and the legal translation and interpretation professions.  Serving on a committee will allow you to know more about the life of our Association and, at the same time, NAJIT will greatly benefit from your insights and contributions.

Committee work is usually carried out under the guidance of the Chair (or co-Chairs), who in most cases is a member of the board of directors. Communication will be via email and periodic conference calls. The time commitment will vary based on the specific projects and on the time of the year. For example, the Conference Committee will be busiest from October to January. If you have any questions about the time commitment for serving on any committee, please contact the committee chair.

The following committees have been created to help in the advancement of the association and the translation and interpretation professions.  Ad Hoc committees are created as needed by the board of directors, and all others are permanent committees named in the Bylaws.

Current Committees

Advocacy

Gladys Matthews, Chair
Chantal Hansen
Bob Lichtenberg
Zeng Zeng Yang

Bench & Bar

Aimee Benavides, Co-Chair
Ernest Niño-Murcia, Co-Chair
Sandra DeJeux
Armida Hernandez
Magdalena Giron
Claudia Rubio-Samulowitz
Andrés Urdaneta

Bylaws & Governance

TBA, Chair

Conference

Armando Ezquerra Hasbun, Co-Chair
Hilda Shymanik, Co-Chair

Elections

TBA, Chair

Immigration Interpreting

Francesca Samuel, Chair
Nadine Cherubin
Clariselle Ocasio

Indigenous Languages

Laura Cahue, PhD, Chair

Membership

Aimee Benavides, Chair

Nominations

Heidi Cazes-Sevilla, Chair

Proteus

Editor-in-Chief- Arianna Aguilar

Editors-

Cecilia Golumbeanu
Andre Moscowitz

Editor & Proofreader-

Kathleen Shelly

Consultant-

Rosemary Dann

Public Relations

Aimee Benavides,  Co-Chair
Gio Lester,  Co-Chair

Blog Sub Committee-

Giovanna L. Lester

Authors-

Armando Ezquerra Hasbun
Bethany Korp-Edwards
Giovanna L. Lester
Athena Matilsky
Janis Palma

Listserv Moderators-

Bethany Korp-Edwards
Cristina Courtright

Training & Education

Gladys Matthews, Chair
Maria (Charo) Gamez
Terence McEneny
Jacquelin Nordin
Rosemary Rodriguez
Lili Selden

Committee Descriptions

Advocacy

The Advocacy Committee focuses on policies that affect the profession, including access to language services for individuals with Limited English Proficiency (LEP). The committee helps monitor and analyze public policies, government initiatives, and press coverage of matters relevant to the legal interpretation and translation professions. The committee also advises the board of directors on responses to issues and requests for comment by government agencies. The advocacy committee educates the general public regarding Title VI LEP policies and works in conjunction with the Bench & Bar committee in support of their educational efforts in that same area.

Bench & Bar (ad hoc committee)

The Bench and Bar Committee has a particular interest in educating judges, attorneys, and other legal professionals on the importance of using certified/qualified interpreters in the judiciary. This committee has already completed a training module for judges and lawyers, and the committee is planning on creating modules for training court administrators, court clerks, and other stakeholders in the legal community.

Bylaws & Governance

The Bylaws and Governance Committee reviews NAJIT’s bylaws and recommends changes to the board of directors as appropriate. It also proposes policies and procedures for strengthening NAJIT governance and consults with the Nominations Committee to ensure the best possible practices for NAJIT elections.

Conference

The Conference Committee plans, schedules, and organizes NAJIT’s annual conference in close coordination with NAJIT’s Executive Director, Administrator, and Board of Directors, including recruiting and selecting speakers, exhibitors, advertisers, and sponsors. The committee collaborates with NAJIT’s Administrator and Treasurer to prepare the conference budget and P&L projections for Board approval.  Additional duties include brainstorming entertainment activities, coordinating with local T&I groups, and providing outreach to colleagues and members of the legal community. The committee also coordinates volunteers who assist NAJIT staff members at the conference.

Elections (ad hoc committee)

The Elections Committee works in conjunction with the Nominations Committee to ensure the annual election of board members is held within the parameters of NAJIT’s bylaws, and announces election results during the annual meeting.

Immigration Interpreting (ad hoc committee)

The Immigration Interpreting Committee contributes to strengthening NAJIT’s voice in policy related to interpreting and translation in immigration-related settings. The committee also has an interest in training interpreters and translators who provide services in this field.

Indigenous Languages (ad hoc committee)

The Indigenous Languages Committee focuses on providing support and guidance for interpreters who speak indigenous languages, including training for interpreters and court administration and staff on the identification of regional variants of various indigenous languages. The committee is working to set forth best practices in the use of interpreters on-site, as compared to remotely by phone or video, and to educate the membership and public as to the indigenous languages that are common to their region.

Membership

The Membership Committee works to increase awareness of NAJIT among a wide array of stakeholders by working on initiatives to increase and retain membership; ascertains that NAJIT membership materials are available at translation and interpreting events; staffs the NAJIT table at major conferences; and helps develop a database of potential members.

Nominations

The Nominations Committee assures member awareness of and involvement in NAJIT’s electoral process, by:

  • Connecting with individual members who show potential for future board service and encouraging them to consider candidacy.
  • Reviewing all nominations received during the nominations process, preparing a slate of candidates for presentation to the membership, striving whenever possible to offer at least two candidates for each open position, and giving the NAJIT Board sufficient advanced notice so that steps can be taken to increase the slate if too few candidates have been identified.
  • Collecting statements by candidates in a timely fashion so they can be mailed to the membership in due time for elections.

Proteus (ad hoc committee)

The Proteus newsletter is one of the major benefits to NAJIT members. The work of the Proteus Committee is to:

  • Prepare and publish Proteus, working closely with the Editor.
  • Help identify and secure advertisers and sponsors.
  • Maintain a list of key individuals in the interpreting and translating professions, the judiciary, the legal profession, and allied professions to receive a complimentary subscription.
  • Prepare individual articles and an index from each issue for publication on the NAJIT website.

Public Relations (ad hoc committee)

The Public Relations Committee is the authoritative source about language access issues related to all types of interpreting for language professionals, other stakeholders, and the general public. The committee keeps NAJIT and its constituency abreast of current events and issues that impact the profession, proactively seeks venues to promote information about certification and how to best to work with interpreters, and articulates the benefits of joining NAJIT as a member or sponsor. Public relations committee members also represent NAJIT at industry conferences and events, and contribute research, editorials, blogs, social media posts, and other forms of communications as appropriate.

Training & Education (ad hoc committee)

The Training and Education Committee develops a range of education and training opportunities for members (and non-members), including webinars and workshops on topics such as translation, transcription, note-taking, among others.