Taking on the role of TNO editor

The NAJIT ObserverIt is with a great deal of excitement and anticipation that I let you know that I have the honor of serving as the new editor of the NAJIT Observer. It is a role I take on in the hope that I can build on the success TNO has experienced under Giovanna (Gio) Lester´s leadership. Gio’s stewardship of TNO over the past five years has been truly remarkable. The high-quality content provided by Gio and a team of dedicated contributors, including Athena Matilsky and Janis Palma, has attracted over 5,000 subscribers, including many NAJIT members. TNO readers have come to expect a post every Friday, almost without fail. In addition to the timely weekly posts, TNO has a collection of past posts on topics relevant to interpreters, translators, language professionals, and students. A quick look at the categories listed on the right-hand side of the blog attests to the diversity of the topics covered.

I truly have big shoes to fill!

Allow me to introduce myself briefly.  I am a native of Costa Rica but have lived most of my adult life in Canada and the United States. My husband and I just relocated to Phoenix after spending over three years in Quebec City. I joined NAJIT at the 2004 Annual Conference in Denver, and since then have attended all but one annual conference. I have served on the advocacy, membership, and education committees and on the NAJIT Board as director, treasurer, and chairperson in 2017-2018. So, I have been around NAJIT for a while, and serving as TNO editor this time feels like being back home. I am delighted.

Plans for the future

My intention is both to keep up the momentum and take TNO forward into these unprecedented and uncertain times in which we live. However, to lay out a plan for the future of TNO, I would like to take some time to “learn the ropes” and, above all, to listen to you, the readers. Please share any and all ideas you have with me.

NAJIT’s annual call for volunteers has recently gone out, and I encourage you to volunteer by writing something for TNO. For those who may shy away from contributing a post because they think it is time-consuming or requires specific writing skills, I’d like to assure you it is not and does not. You may also think you have nothing special to offer, but TNO’s posts are often based on personal experiences in the performance of our profession. All it takes is to put it in writing.

We ask posts to be no more than 1,000 words in length. Since the post is your story, TNO does not require a specific style; only that the piece be short and clear. We will proofread the post and, if necessary, offer suggestions and send the post back for your approval. The piece will be your own regardless. When I say “we,” I am referring to me and the regular authors, including Athena and Janis, who are part of the blog committee.

September schedule

The blog will continue featuring weekly posts, but September being a month of transition, the schedule will be slightly different. This week, instead of Athena’s regular post, you have my introduction. Next week, you will receive a new post by Athena (The Couch will be on hiatus for now but will come back as soon as next month). On September 18, the post will be a new piece by Sandro Tomasi and on September 25th, we will have a new post from Janis Palma.

I am thankful to all those who have contributed posts and provided ideas and support to TNO. They are too numerous to list. I have already heard about at least one other NAJIT member who is willing to be a regular author and will reach out to her within the next few days. I am also grateful that Gio is willing to assist during the learning curve that lies ahead of me and has also offered to contribute ideas for the Couch.

Again, I trust you will think of TNO when volunteering for the various committees. Your contributions will make the blog, and our profession, stronger.  Also, please share posts you like on Facebook, Twitter, and other social media apps and platforms. Please send me your suggestions for this new stage of TNO and ask question for The Couch. I am listening!


Feature Photo by Bianca Gonçalves from Pexels


Gladys Matthews holds a degree in French from the Universidad de Costa Rica and a master’s degree in terminology and translation and Ph.D. in linguistics with an emphasis in legal translation from Université Laval in Canada. A certified court interpreter and experienced instructor, Gladys taught two court interpreting courses she developed for the Master of Conference Interpreting program of Glendon College of York University, Toronto (one language-neutral course for the entire cohort and the other for the English-French track). She also served as director and faculty member in interpreting programs in several colleges and universities in Canada and the United States, and most recently has been a guest lecturer in her native Costa Rica. Gladys currently splits her time between writing and lecturing. Email Gladys at TNO_Editor@najit.org.

16 Comments
  • Liz Essary
    Posted at 14:51h, 04 September Reply

    Thanks to Gio and the TNO authors for your work in providing interesting content for us over the years, and welcome, Gladys!

  • Vicki Bermudez
    Posted at 16:06h, 04 September Reply

    Gladys, you are so right in your comments about having Gio’s big shoes to fill, but I am certain that with your humble spirit you will learn and grow, and continue the tradition of excellence with the help of a variety of past contributors, including yourself. And your personal background and experience will bring a new dimension to the Observer! You will do fine!

  • Gladys Matthews
    Posted at 16:23h, 04 September Reply

    Thanks, Liz!
    I hope you’ll submit a post soon. 🙂

  • Gladys Matthews
    Posted at 16:27h, 04 September Reply

    Vicki,
    I am so very touched by your kind words. Thanks for your support, which I will count on. I hope you will consider submitting a post.

  • ARMIDA HERNANDEZ
    Posted at 17:36h, 04 September Reply

    Welcome Gladys! Best wishes for the continuing success of TNO. I look forward to your posts and that of the other regular authors.

  • Corinne McKay
    Posted at 20:19h, 04 September Reply

    Welcome, Gladys!! And thanks to the previous TNO team for all their work! For anyone who doesn’t know Gladys, her work in the translation/interpreting newsletter world goes wayyyy back to when she and I used to (wait for it…) meet up at a cafe to put address labels and stamps on the Colorado Translators Association newsletters that were then mailed out to every member; I brought my baby daughter along and she slept in her car seat under the table while we worked. The baby daughter just finished her first week of college, so that tells you how long Gladys has been at this! TNO is in good hands with her and I’m excited to see it continue to thrive! Thanks to Gio, Athena, and Janis for all of their work. Hopefully we’ll still see some articles from you ladies?

  • Gladys Matthews
    Posted at 21:05h, 04 September Reply

    Armida,
    Thanks for your welcome and good wishes. If you ever think of contributing a post, I’m here.

  • Gladys Matthews
    Posted at 21:08h, 04 September Reply

    Corinne,
    I cannot believe how much has time has gone by! Indeed, I remember meeting you in a restaurant or at my house in Denver and your daughter would be sleeping in the car seat under the table while we worked. That tiny person is now in college. It boggles the mind! I will treasure those memories forever. Thank you so very much for your kind words, Corinne. And not to put Gio on the spot, but I am counting on her continuing contributions to TNO. If you ever think of writing a post for us, I would be thrilled. Cheers!

  • Gio Lester
    Posted at 21:59h, 04 September Reply

    Gladys, I was over the moon when I heard TNO was in your extremely capable hands! And after reading what Corinne had to say, it is no surprise you slipped is with such ease.

    Congratulations, NAJIT, for a great addition to the TNO team.

    And Gladys, you can always count on me.

  • Jaqueline Neves Nordin
    Posted at 18:29h, 05 September Reply

    That’s amazing! I know Gladys, she is full of energy and definitely a good fit for the blog!
    I am happy Gladys has taken on the task of editor of TNO! She will do great!!!
    Congratulations !

  • Gladys Matthews
    Posted at 17:55h, 08 September Reply

    Hi Jaqueline,
    Thank you so very much for your kind words. I will be reaching out to you for a post. Get ready! 🙂

  • Gladys Matthews
    Posted at 18:05h, 08 September Reply

    Gio,
    I truly appreciate your comments and support. You left TNO in good shape, which has made it easier for me to get started.
    Thanks again.

  • Hilda E. Shymanik
    Posted at 18:51h, 09 September Reply

    I love your introduction Gladys! “I am listening” is a great slogan. Listening is a crucial success element for any association or publication – and even in daily life, business, and personal relationships. Taking the pulse of your audience and readers is paramount. I am grateful to Gio, Janis, Athena, Sandro, Adriana and to all our other colleagues that have contributed their time, talent, and skill to TNO. Welcome Gladys, “Enbuenahora”.

  • Gladys Matthews
    Posted at 18:24h, 10 September Reply

    Thanks for your comments, Hilda. I am truly listening. And I would like to encourage our members to attend the meet-&-greet sessions the Membership committee will be holding twice a week through January. As you know, I attended the first one this week and loved it! It was exciting to get to know our members a bit and for us to talk about NAJIT, what if offers and how we all can help.

    Thanks again! Cheers!

  • Claudia Alcantara
    Posted at 23:38h, 12 September Reply

    Hi Gladys!
    I joined NAJIT this year and had entered my form to be a volunteer and I am very hopeful to be accepted. It’s my first time writing something too. I had the pleasure to meet Gio in one of my T&I classes at FIU where she was invited to talk to us by Professor Borgenheimer and again in a event at FIU. Very happy to be part of the team.

  • Gladys Matthews
    Posted at 23:34h, 14 September Reply

    Hi Claudia,
    Thanks your for you comment and for signing up to volunteer for NAJIT. As for The NAJIT Observer, volunteering means writing posts, and we’re always on the lookout for new contributors. I certainly hope you will consider submitting a post. If you would like to talk about it, send me an email at tno_editor@najit.org and I’ll be in touch. Hope to hear from you soon!

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