You’ve met members of our office staff, and now, we want to introduce you to our fine team of captioners. Please enjoy our brand-new monthly series! We take a closer look at our TCG captioners, their favourite on-air moments, and what it is about this unique career that they love so much.
This month, we get to know a little more about Kim.
- How did your education in the steno world begin?
Summer of 1991. I was attending college with no real direction, and my Business Law professor mentioned “court reporter” in his lecture. After class, I approached him and asked him about “court recorders.” (Note the incorrect term…lol) In his most snide tone of voice, he said (I will never forget this), “I don’t know why you’re asking me about this. You are failing the class, and you don’t have what it takes to be a court reporter.”
Don’t EVER tell me I can’t do something…because I will prove you wrong. I walked straight out of class to the nearest pay phone, looked in the phone book for “Court Reporting Schools” and started my journey officially on September 23, 1991, and never looked back.
- Do you have a funny on-air moment?
The same as a number of other captioners I know: writing “Face Boob” instead of “Facebook.” -_-
- What was the most difficult thing you’ve ever had to caption in your career?
Skill-wise, horse racing. Emotionally, San Francisco Mayor Lee’s memorial.
- What is your favourite part about having captioning as a career?
Working in my pajamas! 😉
Flexible hours and awesome captioners and staff that I work with.
a look inside Kim’s home office
- Have you ever captioned something so heart-wrenching you got emotional on-air and had a hard time continuing? What did you do?
I provided CART services for a number of years in various venues throughout my state, and I had a student who tragically committed suicide. I captioned his memorial service pro bono, and listening to his family during that service was absolutely the most difficult time of my captioning career.
I still miss him to this day.
- What do you see as the advantages of captioning over court reporting, AND what are the disadvantages of captioning over court reporting?
Advantages: When I turn off my writer at the end of the day, I am done. No transcripts to work on after an eight-hour workday. Flexible hours equals more time with my family. No more commute, and I can wear what I want to work! (See answer to Number 4.)
Disadvantages: I miss my staff terribly, and I miss my special assignment calendar. (Multi-defendant cases, high-profile cases, and capital murder cases were all my judge was assigned.)
- What has been the biggest hurdle in your captioning career?
Learning to write truly conflict-free and learning to write anything that a speaker says.
- What is the worst blooper you’ve ever had go out on air?
See Number 2–I was mortified.
Second worst: I captioned an ENTIRE baseball game and had wrongly defined steno strokes for a certain player’s name to translate as another player’s name.
- What was your proudest captioning moment?
Captioning the 2016-2017 University of Arizona Red Blue game and meeting Mike Bibby, Jason Terry, Lute Olsen, Sean Miller, and Miles Simon.