international women's day

EVERY WOMAN COUNTS

Veritext is honored to celebrate women today and every day.

Meet the Wilde Sisters

Once again, we see that steno is indeed a family affair. Meet the Wilde sisters – Lucy & Ellie. Not only NAIT CCR graduates but amazing athletes too! We asked them both to share some thoughts on their program and career choices.

Can you tell us what drew you to the industry of court reporting and brought you to the Captioning and Court Reporting program at NAIT in the first place?

Lucy: I was actually playing basketball at NAIT for a year prior and was trying to figure out what program I wanted to be in, and that’s when I found Captioning and Court Reporting! I was very fascinated with the machine and writing shorthand as I had never seen a machine like that before. But once I learned more about the career and gained a better understanding of what it was from people in my hometown that were court reporters, it seemed like such a good fit for me and my life, and I’m so happy I did!

Ellie: To be honest I was struggling about what I wanted to take in school. I was already at NAIT playing on the women’s basketball team, and my mom was googling programs there and found this one. It was such a different career than anything I had ever heard of, and that intrigued me so much. 

What kept me drawn to the program was hearing about the flexibility of the job. I had talked to quite a few moms who are court reporters, and they said it was such a good mom job, and that’s what I always wanted! There is lots of flexibility in the career and different ways to go with it as well. There is something for everyone. 

What advice do you have for anyone looking for a new career and who may be looking at the Captioning and Court Reporting Program?

Lucy: My advice would be that if you’re thinking of entering the program and not afraid to work hard, do it. It’s a rewarding, flexible career, and the court reporters that I have talked to are very supportive, so I would suggest finding a good firm that gives you that support. I haven’t been working very long, but so far it’s been great!

Ellie: My advice would be that if you’re going to do the program, you need to be 100 percent committed because it’s no joke. If you’re not, it would be too easy to fall behind. But also to not be afraid of the work! It’s a great job and the two years fly by. I don’t regret the work I put in for a second because the options in this career are endless, and they are all in your control! How hard you want to work. And I think that is awesome. Some other advice I would give is to never hesitate to reach out to current court reporters. I talked to a bunch before the program, and they helped me so much in getting a grasp of the career and schooling. I continued to talk to some throughout school and even now I still do. Never be afraid to ask questions! And I’m always happy to help in any way because I know how beneficial it was for me. 

If you know anyone who would be a great fit for the program, they can learn more at the 2024 workshops at NAIT in the new year. A great way to see if steno is the right choice!

Meet Mikayela Robbins, PSR

We are thrilled to welcome Mikayela Robbins to the Veritext family. Not only is she a NAIT Captioning & Court Reporting program grad but has a strong family connection to the school. Her father graduated from the school and her grandfather was recruited from SAIT to come up and help open the Electrical Apprentices program when NAIT opened.  He retired as the Department Head for Electrical Apprentices!

We asked Mikayela what drew her to the industry of court reporting and brought her to the Captioning and Court Reporting program at NAIT in the first place.

I knew my grandfather (Archie Robbins) helped open NAIT and my father graduated from NAIT, so I knew it would be a great school to attend. During Grade 12, I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do going forward, so I went to the NAIT Open House.  I saw the Captioning and Court Reporting program, and I was immediately drawn in. I then did Discover Steno, and from that moment on, I knew it was the perfect fit for me!

What advice do you have for anyone looking for a new career and who may be looking at the Captioning and Court Reporting Program?

I would say to go for it! You are never too old to try something new, and it’s worth it. Every job is different, and you can learn something new daily. It’s been an interesting and exciting profession thus far.

Thanks, Mikayela, for taking the time to share your thoughts on Court Reporting as a career.   For those looking for their next career, Veritext proudly provides SIX scholarship opportunities for incoming and ongoing students at NAIT.   We offer two of the following:

 Veritext Legal Solutions Canada Court Transcription Scholarship

  • Available to two students each year enrolled in the Court Transcription program. These scholarships are awarded based on excellent academic achievement in the program.

Veritext Legal Solutions Canada  Captioning and Court Reporting Scholarship 

  • Available to two students each year enrolled in the Captioning and Court Reporting program. These scholarships are awarded based on excellent academic achievement in the program.

Veritext Legal Solutions Canada  Entrance Bursary 

  • Available to two students each year who are entering the Court Transcription or Captioning and Court Reporting program. These scholarships are awarded on the demonstrated financial need and satisfactory academic achievement to enter the program.

You can learn more about applying for these scholarships here.

An Interview with Kim Johnson, CSR(A), RPR: Capturing Life’s Words and Moments

As a Certified Shorthand Reporter and Certified Realtime Captioner, Kim Johnson’s journey in the industry has taken her from live newsrooms to remote settings, capturing the spoken word and transforming it into accessible text for a diverse audience.  We asked her to spare a moment of her busy life and share her thoughts about her career, her transition from court reporting to CART captioning, and the significance of finding joy both in work and personal pursuits. 

We enjoyed seeing the photos you shared from the CLC Convention in Montreal.  Was this one of the biggest captioning jobs you have done?   If not, do share your other experiences.

That CLC job was definitely the largest onsite job I have done.  I believe there were 4,000 delegates at that convention.   Although I have certainly captioned large remote events for Veritext since joining the Neesons captioning team in the summer of 2019, I did spend 7 years before that on the broadcast side of the captioning industry where I captioned live news and sporting events.   The majority of my captioning career has been done completely remotely from the comfort of my own home and I almost never get to see the end user or ever really know just how many are watching me work.   Montreal was a “wow” moment for me for sure!

What drew you to the industry of captioning, CART, court, and the Court Reporting and Captioning program at NAIT generally in the first place?

I always knew I wanted to do something involving the legal profession.  At the time in the mid ’90s when I was investigating careers, my mom worked at an answering service and one of their clients was a court reporter.  I made a phone call and did some career investigation and now here I am almost 25 years in.  Early on I realized that I enjoyed the writing part of the job much more than the producing transcripts part.  I was lucky because the firm I was working for had a CART contract with a post-secondary institution in the city, so I made the jump from court reporting to CART/captioning.

What advice do you have for anyone looking for a new career? What is the best way to find out if this is the field for them?

Advice for anyone looking for a new career?  Your career is not necessarily who you are but it does occupy a great deal of your time, so do something you enjoy.  

My suggestion for someone who is thinking of entering this field (either court reporting or captioning) is to reach out to one of us and maybe even job shadow.  We are all more than happy to talk about the pros (and cons) of this profession.  I would also recommend checking out the NCRA A to Z Intro to Steno online program.

Lastly, wellness and self-care are important to our team. Do you have a favourite way to recharge, or can you share any tips for staying healthy mentally and physically, both at work and at home?

It’s critical to have hobbies and interests outside of work.  I’m a runner and I enjoy doing yoga.  My husband and I have a 10-month-old basset hound puppy (Agnes) and keeping her out of trouble takes up a lot of my time these days!

To book a CART provider in Canada, click here.

Image Credit: Kristy Cameron, Communicating…Sharing, Connecting, Growing…Together

A New Canadian Webinar: Treatment of Indigenous Language in Legal Transcripts

Join Nigel Baker-Grenier, J.D. of White Raven Law, and Mike Parkhill O. Ont. Founder of SayITFirst. Together we will explore the relationship between counsel, Indigenous witnesses and the court reporter

Veritext Scholarships for NAIT

Veritext Announces a Renewed Commitment to their Scholarship Program for Northern Alberta Institute of Technology Stenography and Transcription Students

Vancouver and Livingston, New Jersey – June 27, 2023 – Veritext Legal Solutions, the leader in court reporting and litigation support solutions, today announces continued support for court reporters throughout Canada by renewing and updating the scholarship program for Northern Alberta Institute of Technology stenography and transcription students.

The new pledge will distribute scholarships to 30 steno and transcription students over the next five years. Included in the program is the Entrance Bursary program with the goal to encourage students to consider court reporting or transcription as a career. Specifics of the annual awards include:

  • Veritext Legal Solutions Canada Court Transcription Scholarship
    • Available to two students each year that are enrolled in the Court Transcription program. These scholarships are awarded based on excellent academic achievement in the program.
  • Veritext Legal Solutions Canada Captioning and Court Reporting Scholarship 
    • Available to two students each year that are enrolled in the Captioning and Court Reporting program. These scholarships are awarded based on excellent academic achievement in the program.
  • Veritext Legal Solutions Canada Entrance Bursary 
    • Available to two students each year that are entering the Court Transcription or Captioning and Court Reporting program. These scholarships are awarded on the demonstrated financial need and satisfactory academic achievement to enter the program.

“These scholarships have been a long-standing tradition for the Veritext family of brands throughout Canada, and we are excited for the opportunity to continue to support the court reporting community and help those coming into the profession,” states Nancy Josephs, CEO of Veritext. “We look forward to working with NAIT in issuing these scholarships to deserving students over the next five years.”

Locations in Canada include Calgary, AB; Kamloops, BC; New Westminster, BC; Vancouver, BC; Winnipeg, MB; Toronto, ON; Regina, SK; and Saskatoon, SK.

To learn more about Veritext and the industry advocacy work the company is doing visit https://veritext.ca/about/industry/.

About Veritext Legal Solutions

Founded on a commitment to excellence, Veritext has become the trusted partner and established market leader in litigation technology and legal service solutions for law firms, government agencies and enterprise corporations. Veritext focuses on the unique needs of each member of the legal team and provides access to innovative technologies and remote solutions, unsurpassed data security, the highest-quality network of reporters and legal videographers, unmatched expertise in multiparty and complex litigation and state-of-the-art conference space across North America. At Veritext, we focus on the details – so legal teams can focus on the case.

All New Canadian Webinar: E-trials Simplified

Take a tour of the current E-TRIAL trends and technology with some of Canada’s leading experts!

On May 18, we are excited to present an in-depth look at the benefits of e-trials in this complimentary one-hour webinar. Christy Pratt, Vice President of Veritext Canada along with special guests Rose Singh, CEO of Triage Data Solutions, and Ryan Snushall, Account Executive for Case Center will explore advancing technologies and discuss best practices for managing, presenting, and marking documents, while sharing practical easy-to-use tips for conducting a successful e-trial in Canada.

We hope to see you there!

See the link below for more information and to register for this in-demand webinar.

Let's celebrate International Women's Day

Let’s Celebrate International Women’s Day | March 8, 2023

International Women’s Day is a time to look at the achievements and contributions of women throughout history. Canada’s theme for International Women’s Day (IWD) 2023 is Every Woman Counts. This is a reminder that all women, from all ages and walks of life, have a place in every aspect of Canadian society, including in the economic, social, and democratic spheres. Canada has produced many strong women who have each fought in their own way for a space in their spheres of influence. In 1992, the Government of Canada designated October as Women’s History Month, marking the beginning of an annual celebration of the outstanding achievements of women and girls throughout Canada’s history. However, for many, March is the month to celebrate, so in honor of International Women’s Day, here are just a few Canadian women of note:

  1. Viola Desmond, who now graces our ten-dollar bill, was a civil rights activist and businesswoman in the 40s. She is best known for her refusal to leave a whites-only section of a movie theatre in New Glasgow, Nova Scotia in 1946 for which she was arrested and fined. Her actions helped spark the modern civil rights movement in Canada.
  2. Margaret Atwood is the author of “The Handmaid’s Tale” and many other works for which she has won numerous awards including the Book Prize and the Governor General’s Award.
  3. Buffy Sainte-Marie is an Indigenous Canadian American (Piapot Cree Nation) singer-songwriter and social activist.   She has been active since the 1960s and many of her songs are about social and political issues. She has been an advocate for Indigenous rights throughout her career.
  4. Emily Carr was a painter and writer, best known for her depictions of Indigenous people and the landscapes of British Columbia’s rugged coast. Her work helped to define Canadian art in the early 20th century.
  5. Julie Payette is an astronaut and engineer who has flown two space missions. She then served as the Governor General of Canada from 2017 to 2021, becoming only the fourth woman to hold that position.
  6. Mary Two-Axe Earley was a Mohawk and Oneida women’s rights activist. After losing her legal Indian status due to marrying a non-status man, she advocated for change to the Indian act which until then had promoted gender discrimination and stripped First Nations women of their rights to participate in the political and cultural life of their home reserves. On June 28, 1985, Bill C-31 was passed to amend the Indian Act.
  7. Corrine Sparks was the first black Canadian woman to become a judge for the Family Court in Nova Scotia. 

This is just a sample of the many Canadian women who have made significant changes to their world. On International Women’s Day, we celebrate their achievements and the achievements of all the women of Canada and around the world, who continue to work to make this a better place to live, thrive and function.

You can read, watch, learn, and listen to more examples of notable women in Canada and the US who have made their mark in history here.

Sustainable Legal Tech Practices

Going Paperless: The Future of the Legal Industry

In recent years, the legal industry has seen a significant shift towards digitization and the adoption of paperless practices.  Covid protocols and the rising trend of hybrid and remote work have certainly sped up that trend.

Advancements made in the fast digital distribution of files — through encrypted hyperlinks — have become the more superior, more sustainable, and more secure solutions for transcript and exhibit delivery.  With paperless legal services, law firms and courts can significantly reduce their paper consumption and the associated costs, such as printing, storage, and secure disposal. 

It will come as no surprise that the legal industry is a significant consumer of paper.  From bankers’ boxes full of files to legal binders and correspondence… the list goes on. By adopting paperless practices and utilizing digital technologies, legal services can reduce their environmental impact and improve the efficiency and accessibility of the legal industry.  The benefits of going paperless in the legal sector are many.  First and foremost, it is a more sustainable and eco-friendly approach.  According to the American Bar Association, an average case with a duration of a year can generate between 20,000 to 100,000 sheets of paper including motions, discoveries, transcripts, exhibits, and other legal documents. The statistics in Canada will no doubt be similar.  That’s a lot of trees.  

Another advantage of going paperless is improving access to justice.  Today we can ensure that legal documents and information are easily accessible to authorized parties while maintaining a high level of security and confidentiality.  In 2019, the Ministry of the Attorney General of BC published a ‘roadmap’ to their digital transformation.   You can read the report here.  The comprehensive report looks at the inevitable transformation of the legal industry into a digital model and how that impacts our legal system. BC and Court systems across Canada – including the Supreme Court – and the United States have developed comprehensive electronic filing systems that allow users to upload multiple documents per case to be used for all filings (with some exceptions).

Veritext has a long-standing commitment to sustainability. Our technological orientation is central to mitigating our environmental impact and we invite you to read more about our sustainability practices and strategies to lessen our own environmental impact in this comprehensive report.

Our commitment to building a more sustainable industry is why our standard transcript deliverables are via secure and encrypted electronic hyperlinks — however, we understand the needs of our clients — and hard copies of all your proceedings will continue to be available upon request.  We are dedicated to customizing your experience with our client services, providing cutting-edge solutions, and capturing your desired preferences to deliver the best service tailored to your needs.

Bringing in the New Year

A Look to 2023 and Beyond

As we wrap up 2022 and look to a fresh new year, we wanted to take this moment to thank you for supporting us throughout this period of national integration and adjustment in 2022.

2022 gave us many exciting things – the expansion of the Veritext brand across Canada, a streamlined new website bringing all our offices together, and a glimpse of the services and opportunities to come with this transition.

Despite a new logo (and lots of blue), you will have noticed that you are still working with the same great people you are familiar with, and we are so grateful to all our staff and partners for riding this rollercoaster with us and making sure you – our clients – have experienced the exceptional service you have grown to expect from all of us in each location (Reportex, All-Star, Island, Richards, Mainland, Ace, Amicus, Royal and Neesons) over the past many years.

Relationships matter and we hope that we are more than just a voice at the end of the phone or a name at the bottom of an email. Veritext has always focused on the unique needs of our clients and strives to provide access to innovative technology, remote solutions, and state-of-the-art meeting space with the highest quality network of reporters and transcriptionists.

In 2023 we vow to continue to innovate and build our network of support for your legal service needs and remain your top provider of legal solutions and services in Canada and beyond.

Thank you for staying with us.

Have a Happy New Year.