LiveDeposition Certified Reporter Spotlight
Name: Andrea Rinker
Title: Freelance Deposition Reporter
CSR, RPR, CLR, CCRR
Self-summary in three words:
Eager to learn
When did you begin your court reporting career?
I passed the February 2009 California CSR.
What sparked your interest in choosing court reporting as a profession?
I received my bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice and had given law school a quick thought. I even took the LSAT but did not do well enough on it to where I felt confident being accepted anywhere. I visited South Coast College in Orange to get some information about the paralegal program, and that’s when I was introduced to the court reporting world. Court reporting wasn’t even a blip on my radar at that point. After a little investigation, I thought being a court reporter would be a very interesting career. I told myself I would try it for six months, and if I wasn’t progressing or I didn’t like it, I would switch back to the paralegal program. Luckily in six months, I was a 150 goal student and I was absolutely fascinated with being able to write shorthand. I received my 190 card on the one-year anniversary of my starting theory and I eventually qualified for the state exam in 14 months.
What advice would you give students or those just entering the field of Court Reporting?
Get a mentor! I unfortunately didn’t connect with any working reporters until I started getting involved in my state organization so I was absolutely clueless leaving school and entering the working world.
And NETWORK, NETWORK, NETWORK!
And be prepared to drive EVERYWHERE.
What is your favorite thing about being a reporter?
The flexibility! I can work as much or as little as I want (although I love working so most of the time, it’s as much as I want).
As a Court Reporter, what is your worst nightmare or biggest pet peeve?
I constantly have the nightmare of forgetting my machine and having to write down on a piece of paper all of the testimony. I think it’s hilarious that I have heard about this same dream from other reporters.
Biggest pet peeve is when someone asks me if I’m just sitting at the end of the table and tape recording a deposition.
Where is the strangest place you have taken a deposition?
Probably the Century Regional Detention Facility in Lynwood – 12 of us in a small room in the booking department. Definitely a great spot for people watching.
What is the funniest thing you have heard during a deposition or in the courtroom?
Probably not the funniest, but this happened last month:
Q. Were you guys during that six month period and this is a delicate were you guys dating other people?
A. Both of us.
Q. Wow. Okay. That’s sassy.
MR. ATTORNEY: That’s a legal term.
When not court reporting, how do you spend your free time?
I love musical theatre and have season tickets to the local performing arts center. I bought my house this year so I enjoy small projects around the house (while my boyfriend “enjoys” the larger projects). I am also involved in the Deposition Reporters Association as a volunteer and a 2015-2016 board member-elect.
What do you like most about LiveDeposition?
It’s seriously the easiest thing to set up and get going. A few months ago traffic was a nightmare and I was running “late” to a 9:00 arbitration (I like to be an hour early for realtime jobs). I walked in the door at 8:40 and had my iPads set up and ready to go at 8:50. I even had time to enjoy a cup of coffee before we got started. If I had been messing and fooling around with cables, I would have started my day off frazzled, and we all know how horrible that feeling is.
Anything else you would like to share?
I won my LiveDeposition router in a raffle at the Deposition Reporters Association annual convention last February in Palm Springs. Come join us in Monterey February 20th-22nd, 2015 and maybe you can win one too!