2017 Conference Speakers Bios and Session Abstracts

Dartagnhan Rodrigues                    Ronaldo Sartorio

The Health Care Interpreter’s Health.  Who cares for their health?

Hospital environments are naturally hard and stressful places to be.  And not only for patients, who are putting their lives in the hands of doctors and nurses, but also for those professionals who bear the responsibility to do their best under all circumstances, regardless of their psychological state on any given day.  Health care interpreters are under the same stress. How does stress affect an interpreter’s work? What can interpreters do to relieve this stress? Are there any forms of insurance that might support an interpreters health and well being? Do interpreters think about retirement? This is a preliminary study on how stress can affect interpreter health and productivity.  It also considers what actions can be taken to improve interpreter working conditions.

Learning Objectives:

  • Analyze if health care interpreters’ health is in danger
  • Health care interpreters must interpret what they feel
  • What to do to feel good in hospital environments

Dartagnhan Rodrigues is a professor at Universidade Nove de Julho (UNINOVE), a teacher for the Brazilian Ministry of Education’s TOFL preparation, a medical and conference interpreter, a translator with a graduate degree in English translation and a degree in teacher training for college education. He is member of the International Medical Interpreter Association (IMIA).  In 2016, Dartagnhan presented papers at the IMIA Annual Conference, the 12th Brazilian National Conference of Translators and 6th International Meeting of Translators, both at the Federal University of Uberlândia in Brazil, and the Annual Undergraduate Research Meeting at Nove de Julho University in São Paulo, Brazil.

Ronaldo Sartorio

Ronaldo Sartorio is a business administrator specialized in foreign trade with an MBA in business management. He currently majors in translation and interpreting studies and is also a graduate student in teacher training for college education at Universidade Nove de Julho (UNINOVE) in São Paulo, Brazil. At the same institution, he works as an English and Portuguese instructor. He has contributed to international conferences by presenting his studies on community interpreting.

Presenter:           Victor Sosa
Organization:      Indigenous Interpreting +

Lack of Equivalencies and Relay, two challenges for Indigenous Interpreters

While the interpreting profession has had Indigenous Interpreters for several years these individuals often time have had few option for training and personal development to succeed in the profession. Also, some entities that have requested services, such as court systems, community as well as healthcare providers often times have had difficulties in giving support to these languages and can often times have had unrealistic expectations of Indigenous Interpreters. Two major challenges that these interpreters face are the lack of equivalencies of westernized terms and concepts that are not found in their mother tongue and difficulties in working with other interpreters when called on to preform relay interpreting. Often times neither the Indigenous Interpreter nor the Spanish/English Interpreter have had any training on how to perform this skill in consecutive or simultaneous modes. This presentation will present and discuss real world approaches to overcoming these challenges.

Learning Objectives:

  • Identify challenges of lack of equivalencies
  • Identify challenges for relay interpreting
  • Real world solutions and strategies to overcome these challenges

Victor Sosa is the Co-Founder of Indigenous Interpreting+ a nationally recognized provider of Indigenous Interpreting based in California. He also created a Comprehensive Language Delivery Program at Natividad Medical Center. Mr. Sosa received the prestigious 2013 National Council on Interpreting in Health Care (NCIHC) Language Access Champions Award. Mr. Sosa is a Career Interpreter and Trainer with over 25 years of real world experience. Most recently he collaborated in the development of a 64 Hour Curriculum training for Indigenous Interpreter and believes it will be a leap forward to access to training for Indigenous Language Speakers.

Presenter:             Aiden Vargas
Organization:      KBOO Community Radio


Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender (LGBT) is a culture in and of its own and there are many subcultures under the LGBT umbrella. We will discuss LGBT demographics, terminology, and concepts. Learn the jargon, the do’s and don’ts to provide better interpreting outcomes for this community.  Get to know the community better, you will be glad you did, and we will too!

Learning Objectives:

  • Learn LGBT Jargon
  • Learn how to be better prepared as interpreters when working with the LGBT community.
  • Understanding transgender clients, transitioning (F-M/M-F) (Before & After Surgery)

Aiden Vargas is an activist in the LGBT community.  He raises awareness of the needs of this community by voicing their concerns in public media.  Originally from Costa Rica, he first appeared on the “El Show de Christina” in 1992. In 1990 he came out as a gay man while still living in his homeland. Because of death threats he moved to Portland in 1999. He is a Qualified Spanish interpreter in the State of Oregon. 

Presenter:           Felicity Ratway
Organization:      Wallace Medical Concern

Strategies for Interpreting Idiomatic Expressions

Idioms present a special challenge even to gifted interpreters. Sayings and Idioms often don’t convert easily from one language to another. “Catch-22” makes perfect sense to an English speaker, but when a provider asks a patient: “That’s a Catch-22 isn’t it?” the medical interpreter is put on the spot to come up with an interpretation that preserves the speaker’s meaning. A literal, word for word interpretation may confuse the listener, but an explanation in the target language may not preserve the speaker’s tone and register. What strategies do interpreters use to interpret idiomatic expressions faithfully? Which of these strategies are most effective? Interpreters will explore the use of idiomatic expressions in the medical setting; the strategies used to interpret these expressions, and how to decide which strategies to employ in their work. Participants will employ the skills they learn to decide which strategies to use in example scenarios.

Learning Objectives:

  • Recognize types of idiomatic expressions used by patients and providers
  • Identify ethical principles that guide decision-making in the interpreting encounter, and how these principles apply to interpreting idioms
  • Identify strategies used to interpret idiomatic expressions, and select appropriate strategies to use when interpreting idiomatic expressions

Felicity Ratway works for the Wallace Medical Concern, a federally qualified health center in Portland, OR, where she interprets for patients and providers, translates documents, and manages the organization’s language access program. She received a Master’s degree in Interpreting and Translation Studies from Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, NC. She holds a national certification as a medical interpreter through NBCMI and state interpreter qualification through the Oregon Health Authority.

Presenter:           Christina Healy
Organization:      Oregon Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf

An Interpreting Model Sampler

Theoretical models take complex processes or topics and represent them in systematic, concrete terms, so that students, practitioners, and consumers can more readily discuss abstract concepts. The shared language from a model supports practitioners in analyzing our work together to enhance our on-going professional growth. In this workshop, I introduce several models that are commonly used by signed language interpreters, including:

– The Integrated Model of Interpreting (Colonomos, 2014),
– The Gish Approach to Information Processing (Gish, 1987),
– The Effort Model (Gile, 2009),
– The Demand-Control Schema (Dean & Pollard, 2013),
– Role-Space for Interpreters (Llewellyn-Jones & Lee 2014).

The purpose and application of each model or framework are explained, and resources are provided for further study. Workshop participants then discuss how these models may apply to their work, as well as share additional models that they have found beneficial in their practice.

Learning Objectives – At the end of this workshop participants will be able to:

  • Explain the benefits of theoretical models
  • Give an example of how a model can enhance a discussion about interpreting work
  • Identify resources for deeper learning about interpreting-related models and their application.

Christina Healy has been interpreting in the Deaf community for 14 years in a variety of settings. She earned her BS in ASL/English Interpreting from Western Oregon University and her MA and PhD in Linguistics from Gallaudet University in Washington, DC. While studying on the east coast she also worked as a freelance interpreter and taught interpreting courses in Baltimore. She is thrilled to be back in the Pacific Northwest, getting to know the interpreters here again, mentoring new colleagues, and serving as a member-at-large on the board of the Oregon Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (ORID).

Presenter:         Carlos E. Martinez-Morales
Organization:  National Board of Certification for Medical Interpreters (NBCMI)

Then and Now-Understanding Section 1557 of the ACA

On May 18, 2016, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Office for Civil
Rights (OCR) issued the implementing regulation for Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act. The regulation builds upon longstanding nondiscrimination regulations and provides important new protections, including prohibitions against sex discrimination in health programs and activities, and nondiscrimination requirements for health insurance programs and activities. After an overview of the law, this presentation will focus on medical interpretation and auxiliary aids provision guidelines found in Section 1557 and how they compare to those in Title VI of the Civil Rights Act and Title III of the Americans with Disability Act.

Learning Objectives:

  • Understand what Section 1557 of the ACA is
  • Understand medical interpretation and auxiliary aids requirements for hospitals and applicable organizations under Section 1557
  • Define the role of the certified medical interpreter, the qualified medical interpreter, and the qualified bilingual staff

Carlos Martinez-Morales is the Language Services Manager for Intermountain Healthcare in the states of Utah and Idaho, where he manages a team of over 70 staff interpreters who serve over 23 hospitals. He also serves as the Chair of the National Board of Certification for Medical Interpreters (NBCMI). He has over 15 years of experience with Interpretation in the Law enforcement and medical settings. Carlos received his BS in Biology from the University of Utah, and is a Certified Medical Interpreter (CMI-Spanish). Carlos is a member of the Utah Translators and Interpreters Association (UTIA) and the International Medical Interpreters Association (IMIA). Carlos is also a trainer of medical interpreters (Bridging the Gap instructor).

Presenter:           Virginia Joplin
Organization:      Verbio

Healthy relationships between translators and project managers

Healthy relationships between freelance translators and project managers are based on all parties understanding each other’s roles and expectations in a project lifecycle. We will define these roles and expectations. We will also explore ways to improve communication and collaboration.

Learning objectives:

  • Defining roles & expectations a Project Manager (PM) has for translator, editor
  • Defining roles & expectations a translator has for PM
  • Better collaboration between all parties

Virginia Joplin, CEO of Verbio & Official Translator for France and Spain, began professionally translating in 1996. She also has many years of experience as a bilingual copywriter, localization project manager, cultural consultant, and co-owner of a web development firm. Her education includes a university degree in French and Spanish plus special certificates from language studies in France and Costa Rica. Virginia has been an Active Member of the American Translators Association and similar professional organizations since 1998. Virginia was twice elected by her national peers as Administrator of ATA’s Translation Company Division (2012-16). Virginia blended her skills and experience as an entrepreneur and translator to establish Verbio, one of Oregon’s fastest growing companies. Her multidisciplinary background provided insights into each role in the translation industry, which she uses to facilitate the healthy, informed, and cooperative relationships Verbio builds between its translators and customers and staff.

Presenter:           Yvonne Simpson
Organization:      Harborview Medical Center

Non-Verbal Communication in Interpreting

The goal of this session is to look at the role that nonverbal communication (NVC) plays in interpreted encounters. As we focus on rendering the message correctly into the target language, how much do we take into account the speaker’s tone, cadence, posture, or dress? As we interpret, do we consider how our gestures, facial expressions, or voice quality affect the way the message is received? In this presentation, we will review definitions and examples of NVC, its functions, how to correctly perceive others’ NVC, and awareness of one’s own NVC. We will have the opportunity to discuss examples of NVC, and we will also talk about how to manage NVC in interpreting encounters since there is no set guidance regarding NVC in national interpreting standards.

Learning Objectives:

  • Learn how to observe non-verbal communication to fully understand message meaning
  • Become aware of one’s own non-verbal communication and the effect it can have on an interpreted session
  • Consider the importance of rendering or not rendering the speaker’s non-verbal communication when interpreting

Yvonne Simpson is the Medical Interpreter Supervisor at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle.  She holds a Master of Arts in Spanish (Linguistics) and has significant experience in interpreting, translating and training.  Yvonne is a Certified Medical Interpreter through the National Board.  Formerly, she was the Lead Interpreter at St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center in Phoenix, Arizona.

Presenter:           Helen Eby
Organization:      Gaucha Translations

Medical terminology – problem solving through parallel texts

How can we identify not only the right expression, but also the right way to talk about the subject? And how can we understand enough about new material to propose reasonable solutions? Often, medical dictionary solutions are insufficient. In this interactive presentation, participants will explore the use of parallel texts, and as they work in small groups they will solve some translation problems together. The materials provided will come from medical sources, but the same principles can be applied to any other field of translation. These practices have proven useful to both interpreters and translators.

Learning Objectives:

  • Identifying parallel concepts in terminology,
  • Identifying parallel texts for research,
  • Developing our own terminology databases

 Helen Eby is a certified Spanish translator and interpreter. She started her university studies in Argentina with two years of medicine at the University of Buenos Aires. She then graduated as a teacher of English and Spanish in Argentina and worked as a secretary for an import-export company. She has translated and interpreted in almost every country of Latin America. One of her major interests is supporting translators and interpreters entering the field, which is why she co-founded The Savvy Newcomer and Cuatro Mosqueteras, as well as establishing training programs for medical interpreting and for translation in Oregon.

Presenter:           Alonna Watson, SC:L
Organization:    Independent Contractor – National Trainer and Consultant

What is the COURT really asking?

Do you work in the legal setting? Come explore what the court is really asking. What is the intent behind the question. What are they really asking for? Through a series of hands-on activities/games we will analyze the translation of simple and complex phrases used in the courts. You will be suprised to find out that even the simplest phrases have stumped seasoned interpreters.

Learning Objectives:

  • To do text analysis of legal phrases,
  • To explore the intent and implicit meaning of legal phrases,
  • To practice said translations in small groups

Alonna Watson has held certification for 30 years as an American Sign Language interpreter. In addition she holds her legal credentials through the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf. She has been a trainer, mentor and consultant in the field for 20+ years. Alonna loves to come up with creative activities so that everyone may participate. She allows you to work with a partner or in small groups in order to provide a safe environment to learn in.

Presenter:           Tatiana F. Gonzalez-Cestari
Organization:      MARTTI

Drug Problem? Learn About Medications for Better Interpretations

Most medical-related interpretation encounters involve information regarding names of medications, classification, side effects, routes of administration, dosage, and mechanisms of action by which drugs work in our body. Having knowledge and basic understanding on these different and very important areas of prescribed or non-prescribed medications, make communication during an interpretation session more accurate and understandable. This session will review the information mentioned above, as well as how our body can affect drugs, what pharmaceutical presentations of drugs there are in the market, implications of understanding these processes while in a medical interpretation session, and will help the interpreter get familiarized with medication terminology in general.

Learning Objectives:

  • Identify different routes of administration, preparations, and dosage forms of drugs,
  • Understand types of drug names
  • Understand important aspects of interpreting any drug-related clinical session

Tatiana F. González-Cestari is a Pharmacist with a Ph.D. in Pharmacology and holds CHITM National Certification. A highly skilled and experienced medical interpreter and translator, she currently manages Interpreter Education and Compliance at Martti/Language Access Network (LAN) and trains medical interpreters in skill-based and medical terminology. She has mentored; developed trainings; presented at Symposia, Conferences, and Workshops; and has lectured for undergraduate and graduate students for 10 years.

Presenter:           Tatiana F. Gonzalez-Cestari
Organization:      MARTTI

Blood Thinner or Anticoagulant?

Drugs or other products that affect blood coagulation are often discussed in medical encounters. In order to guarantee accuracy during these types of interpretation sessions, interpreters must understand the mechanism by which certain products affect coagulation, some interactions between other drugs or food with anticoagulants, and many other important side effects that affect patients’ quality of life. This session will focus on increasing understanding of the blood coagulation process and products affecting it as well as important aspects of interpreting coagulation-related medical sessions.

Learning Objectives:

  • Understand the general process of blood coagulation and blood plug formation
  • Understand the mechanism by which certain drugs and food affect blood coagulation
  • Identify certain aspects of interpreting medical sessions related to coagulation

Tatiana F. González-Cestari is a Pharmacist with a Ph.D. in Pharmacology and holds CHITM National Certification. A highly skilled and experienced medical interpreter and translator, she currently manages Interpreter Education and Compliance at Martti/Language Access Network (LAN) and trains medical interpreters in skill-based and medical terminology. She has mentored; developed trainings; presented at Symposia, Conferences, and Workshops; and has lectured for undergraduate and graduate students for 10 years.

Presenter:           Jost Zetzsche
Organization:     International Writers’ Group, LLC

Why Translators Should Understand Technology and How They Can Shape the World of Translation of Tomorrow

We’ll look at the changes in the world of translation from three different angles: 1) Technology, 2) Communication, and 3) Excellence.
– Technology has rapidly changed – even in the course of the last two years – and it’s up to us to embrace and shape it in a way that it will work in our favor. How can that be done?
– Communication is what we’re inherently good at, otherwise we wouldn’t translate. Yet we regularly fail to communicate our value to each other and to society as a whole. How can we change that, especially when we don’t like how the narrative is driven by others?
– Excellence is what we believe sets us apart from both technology and the bilingual crowd. Who is defining excellence and what can we do to be proactive about it?

Learning Objectives:

  • Understanding translation technology,
  • Understanding the need to communicate to the outside world about what translation is,
  • Understanding your own value

Jost Zetzsche is a translation industry and translation technology consultant, an author on various aspects of translation, and an ATA-certified English-to-German technical translator. 1999 he co-founded International Writers’ Group, LLC, on the Oregon coast. Originally from Hamburg, Germany, he earned a Ph.D. in the field of Chinese translation history and linguistics at the University of Hamburg. The Translator’s Tool Box, his computer guide for translators is now in its thirteenth edition, and his technical journal for the translation industry goes out to more than 11,000 translation professionals. In 2012, Penguin published his co-authored Found in Translation, a book about translation and interpretation for the general public. You can find him on Twitter at @jeromobot.


Sunday, September 10th    1:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.  at AF Gray Hall 11 (Warner Pacific College)
Presenters:    Eliana Lobo and Jazmin Manjarrez

Healthcare Interpreter Ethics: Professional Role Boundaries

This workshop will analyze each component of the Code of Ethics for Healthcare Interpreters.  We will look at the challenges interpreters face on a daily basis, and learn what is the most effective way of dealing with those challenges when they come up.  What are our Professional Role Boundaries?  We will explore this and many other situations, by providing real-life scenarios and realistic solutions.

Learning Objectives:

Be able to describe

  • What a code of ethics is
  • Why a code of ethics exists for every health profession
  • What the interpreter code of ethics covers

Eliana Lobo is a native speaker of English and Brazilian Portuguese. An experienced interpreter and translator, Portuguese court interpreter, Spanish/Portuguese translation supervisor, Portuguese healthcare interpreter, medical trauma center interpreter services Supervisor and Certified Medical Interpreter Trainer.

Eliana earned two M.A.s from Brown University: Bilingual Education, and Portuguese & Brazilian Studies. She’s a nationally certified CoreCHI-Portuguese, and a former Fulbright Grantee.

Since 2013, via the NCIHC’s “Home for Trainers” webinar workgroup, she has helped create and host over 30 national webinars on effective medical interpreter training. Currently, Eliana Directs Lobo Language Access, developing and conducting interpreter training workshops and curricula in Seattle.

Jazmin Manjarrez is the owner of LinguaCulture Connections, a company that provides quality interpreter training in Portland, Oregon. She is also a Lead Trainer for THE COMMUNITY INTERPRETER ® International Edition, a program approved by the State of Oregon to meet the 60-hour interpreter training requirement to become a Qualified or Certified Health Care Interpreter.

Jazmin currently serves as the Vice Chair of the National Board of Certification for Medical interpreters and as Vice President of the Oregon Society of Translators and Interpreters (OSTI). She is also an active member of the International Medical Interpreters Association (IMIA).

Jazmin is a Certified Medical Interpreter (CMI) – Spanish, as well as a Certified Health Care Interpreter in Oregon. She is passionate about the interpreting profession and strives to promote professionalism in all aspects of the field. She advocates for training, mentoring and professional development for all interpreters. She has been a medical interpreter for 15 years and has gained broad experience working in a wide variety of medical settings, both as a staff interpreter and as a freelancer.


9:00 – 10:00 am Registration
10:00 – 1:00 pm ATA exam

Please note, examinees must sign up with ATA in advance.

Room AF Gray 11


1:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Cost:  $35.00
Pre-Registration is required

Room AF Gray 11

Location for both events:
Warner Pacific College
2219 SE 68th Avenue
Portland, OR 97215

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