April Crites started her career in the court reporting field in 1988 and has been with Mike Mobley Reporting since October 2017. She is based in Cincinnati.
From April’s perspective:
Where did you go to school? I went to Cuyahoga Community College (also known as Tri-C) for court reporting. I have taken classes beyond Tri-C, mostly at the University of Texas in Houston. It was there that I was pursuing a BSN degree but health issues stood in the way of my finishing my last year. I’m thrilled to say I’m a breast cancer survivor – seven years!
About being a court reporter:
I love what I do. It has been a very fulfilling career in all of the different arenas that make up machine stenography. It’s afforded me the opportunity to be an integral part of a courtroom or deposition room, and it’s afforded me the honor of providing closed captions (and CART) to millions who are deaf or hard of hearing, as well as providing many professors’ lectures for students who are pursuing their dreams. I simply love what I do.
During those 30 years, I have been a freelance and official court reporter, closed captioner, and a CART (Communication Access Realtime Translation) provider for classes and events like college classes (Algebra, Constitutional Law, Biology, etc.).
I began my career as a freelance court reporter, beginning right out of college.
I was involved in a medley of depositions: the typical and somewhat atypical. Civil/personal injury cases being common.
But the uncommon as a freelancer: chemical, mechanical engineering; accident reconstructionists; Cleveland Clinic’s Chief of Cardiology; neurologists, and many others.
But as an official reporter, I worked municipal court, common pleas court, and for federal court. At the USDC Sixth Circuit in Akron, Ohio, 1999, I was the court reporter for one of the U.S.’s largest antitrust cases (Sherman Act) – Re/Max International, Inc. vs. Realty One, Inc., (ND Ohio, 1996) before the late (and wonderful) Judge David Dowd. Each day I produced a transcript of that day’s trial events by the end of the day and for numerous parties involved. As of today, it is the most challenging and satisfying work I’ve been involved with as a court reporter.
The criminal side of court reporting – I was involved with numerous trials and hearings, ranging from small misdemeanors to several murder trials. A specific memory – traveling with a district attorney to a Florida Corrections Facility to take the deposition of an inmate who had been convicted of felonious assault. That was fun.
My closed captioning career began in 1999 with a company based in Pittsburgh. I worked in closed captioning for 26 years, often doing both captioning and court reporting during some periods. My most memorable moment from those 26 years is being asked to caption the Super Bowl in 2000. The company I was with had been awarded the contract to caption that year for NBC. It was an awesome experience. I did the first half of the game with a Pittsburgh Post-Gazette newspaper reporter and a photographer sitting in the control room with me. I’ve also captioned “Saturday Night Live,” World Series games, Summer and Winter Olympics, The Road to the Triple Crown (that’s challenging to write!), John Glenn’s return to space for NASA, Muhammad Ali’s funeral, being on air with a Washington, D.C., station when the World Trade Center and the Pentagon were attacked. Captioned live then-presidential candidate Al Gore speech, a few State of the Union addresses to Congress, and many others. The Weather Channel, CNN, MSNBC, NBC, CBS, ABC….sports and news of all varieties during my 26 years.
Where have you lived? I was born in Indianapolis and was raised in southern Ohio, near Ironton and Chesapeake, Ohio. My husband and I moved to the Cincinnati area in 2015 after eight years in Houston. We miss the warm weather, but we love being “home.”
What do you enjoy doing outside of your job? Outside of work, which I truly enjoy, my husband and I love nature walks, movies, and time spent with family and friends. We’re on-and-off empty-nesters, depending on the month and the child.