Call for Volunteers: Committees

Call for Members to Serve on 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

TBA, Chair

Bench & Bar

Ernest Niño-Murcia, Chair

Bylaws & Governance

TBA, Chair

Conference

Hilda Shymanik, Chair

Elections

TBA, Chair

Immigration Interpreting

TBA, Chair
Francesca Samuel

Indigenous Languages

TBA, Chair

Membership

TBA, Chair

Nominations

Heidi Cazes-Sevilla, Co-Chair
Carmen (Subi) Febres-Cordero, Co-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

TBA, Chair

Committee Descriptions

Advocacy

The Advocacy committee is looking for interpreters who are passionate about policies that effect the profession including access to language services for individuals with Limited English Proficiency (LEP). The Advocacy 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 members have the important role of educating the general public regarding Title VI LEP policies. The advocacy committee works in conjunction with the Bench & Bar committee in support of their educational efforts in that same area. Committee members should be familiar with LEP issues, stay up-to-date with related policies, and have strong writing skills.

Bench & Bar (ad hoc committee)

The Bench and Bar Committee welcomes members with 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. These efforts will benefit from members with a strong interest in this topic. If you work in languages other than Spanish, including ASL, you are especially encouraged to apply.

Bylaws & Governance

Contribute to the efficient functioning of your organization. NAJIT’s bylaws and governance committee reviews our organization’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 Elections Committee to ensure the best possible practices for NAJIT elections. Committee members should have a strong understanding of parliamentary procedures as set forth in Robert’s rules.

Conference

Be involved in the planning and implementation of NAJIT’s major events. The Conference Committee performs a variety of functions associated with our annual conference. The committee plans, schedules, and organizes the conference in close coordination with NAJIT’s Executive Director, Administrator and Board of Directors. This includes recruiting and selecting speakers, exhibitors, advertisers, and sponsors.  The committee collaborates with NAJIT’s Administrator and Treasurer to prepare the conference’s budget, P&L projections and seeks board approval.  Additional duties of the committee include brainstorming entertainment activities, coordinating with local T&I groups, and 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)

This committee works in conjunction with the Nominations Committee to insure the election is held within the parameters of NAJIT’s bylaws and announces election results during the annual meeting.

Immigration Interpreting (ad hoc committee)

Contribute to strengthening NAJIT’s voice in policy related to interpreting and translation in immigration-related settings by serving on the Immigration Interpreting Committee. This is a committee for those interested not only in immigration interpreting now, but also, those wishing to contribute to the training of the next generation of interpreters and translators who provide services in this field.

Indigenous Languages (ad hoc committee)

Provide support and guidance for interpreters who speak indigenous languages. Provide training for interpreters and court administration and staff on the identification of regional variants of various indigenous languages. Set forth best practices in the use of interpreters on-site as compared to remotely by phone or video. Educate the membership and public in general as to the indigenous languages that are common to their region.

Membership

Contribute to NAJIT’S growth and well-being by serving on the Membership Committee. This committee works to increase awareness of NAJIT among a wide array of stakeholders. This includes working on initiatives to increase and retain membership; making sure that NAJIT membership materials are available at translation and interpreting events; volunteering to staff the NAJIT table at major conferences; and helping develop a database of potential members. This is a great committee for our members who are passionate about our profession and enjoy networking.

Nominations

NAJIT’s leadership is established through an electoral process. If you want to help with this important process, join the Nominations Committee. This committee makes sure that NAJIT members are aware of and involved in the electoral process, by:

  • Connecting with individual members who show potential for future board service and encouraging them to consider it.
  • Reviewing all nominations received during the nominations process, preparing a slate of candidates for presentation to the membership so that whenever possible, there are 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. All members and other readers of Proteus benefit greatly from the contribution of the true experts–you and other NAJIT members. The work of these experts on 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 mission of the Public Relations committee is to be the authoritative source about language access issues related to all types of interpreting both for language professionals, other stakeholders, and the general public. The PR 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 in industry conferences and events and contribute research, editorials, blogs, social media and other forms of communications as appropriate.

Training & Education (ad hoc committee)

This committee is a great fit for members who want to help NAJIT members to develop their skills and become better informed about the issues affecting the profession. The 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, and many others. If you are willing to help in the organization of and delivery of educational activities, you are most welcome to join this committee.