From the President: Change for the Better

From the President
Madalena Sánchez Zampaulo
president@atanet.org
Twitter: @mszampaulo

I came across a copy the American Translators Association—1959-2009: A Professional Journey, written to commemorate the Association’s 50th anniversary, in my home office the other day and took a few minutes to flip through it again. As I skimmed the pages of ATA’s history, it became obvious to me just how far our Association has come in the past 60+ years. Not only have we adapted to various changes and trends, but we’ve refined our benefits and programs throughout the years to support our members and promote the professions.

The ATA Chronicle: First, if you’re reading this, you’re enjoying the now-fully-digital issue of The ATA Chronicle. I admit I prefer to read books and magazines in print whenever I have the chance, but the benefits of going digital with our Association’s flagship publication are well worth it. Besides the environmental impact and cost savings, the number of members opting for the digital version of The ATA Chronicle has grown over the years. These factors led to the Board’s decision to stop printing and mailing the magazine with the May/June issue.

Certification: Another area where ATA continues to make improvements is with the certification exam. The Certification Committee has worked diligently over the past few years to offer the exam to candidates remotely in addition to holding in-person sittings. And most recently, the exam is being offered on demand.1 This means you can now take the certification exam at a time that suits you from anywhere in the world! A huge thanks to the Certification Committee for making this happen.

Professional Development: We’re also enjoying the fruits of the Professional Development (PD) Committee’s hard work as they continue to develop a truly robust PD program—including a wide variety of business-related and language-/specialization-specific webinars, workshops, and podcast episodes. The webinar library continues to grow with more and more timely and relevant presentations by colleagues who graciously share their knowledge and expertise with us. It has never been easier to find valuable ways to refine our skills as ATA members, and there’s surely more in store to look forward to.

Advocacy and Outreach: Our Advocacy Committee has also been working on ways to offer materials and education to members on how to approach lawmakers as they make decisions that affect the work we do as independent professionals. In fact, members of the Advocacy Committee recently shared ATA’s efforts and how to advocate for policies that support our professions in a free webinar.2 The committee is also planning to offer virtual Advocacy Days where you can sign up and join the efforts to advocate for our professions. Stay tuned for more!

Business Practices Education Committee: The Business Practices Education Committee has also stepped up its digital offerings by hosting a series of virtual networking events and kicking off the Next Level Blog, which supports translators and interpreters with five or more years of experience seeking to achieve specific business goals. And The Savvy Newcomer blog continues to offer weekly content to support newbies in translation and interpreting. Between the digital Chronicle and these blogs, the number of useful resources we can tap into continues to grow.

Online Voting: Finally, we’ll soon have the chance to vote for several Director positions for ATA’s Board. Even though we’ll meet in person during ATA’s 63rd Annual Conference in Los Angeles, October 12-15, voting will continue to take place online going forward. This process allows more Voting members to cast their votes while easing the burden on the Teller’s Committee, which will no longer have to count paper ballots. Look for more information on the candidates and this year’s election in the September/October issue of The ATA Chronicle. And don’t forget to vote!

As our Association continues to evolve, it will be fascinating to see where the next chapter of our history takes us.

Useful Links

ATA Advocacy and Outreach Page

ATA Certification Program Information

ATA Chronicle-Online

ATA63 Conference Main Website

ATA63 Conference Registration

ATA Elections Page (Slate of Candidates)

ATA Webinar Series

The ATA Podcast (All Episodes)

Next Level Blog—The ATA Business Practices Blog

The Savvy Newcomer

Notes
  1. The ATA Podcast—Episode 74: The ATA Certification Exam On Demand (with Certification Committee Chair David Stephenson).
  2. Free ATA Webinar—Successful Advocacy for Translators and Interpreters (with ATA Advocacy Committee Members Eve Lindemuth Bodeux, Lucy Gunderson, Cristina Helmerichs, and Bill Rivers).

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