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Supreme Court of Ohio Welcomes Certified Court Interpreters: Cleveland’s Catherine Piña -Arrieta is one of 22 Recognized in Columbus

Feb 07, 2013
(Columbus, Ohio) – The last six months have certainly been quite wonderful for Cleveland Municipal Court Interpreter Catherine Piña -Arrieta.

Contact:  Ed "Flash" Ferenc, Public information Officer
              Cleveland Municipal Court                   
              216-664-6787   216-857-7420
              ference@cmcoh.org

(Columbus, Ohio) – The last six months have certainly been quite wonderful for Cleveland Municipal Court Interpreter Catherine Piña -Arrieta.

 Last July, she passed the oral exam to become a certified court interpreter in the State of Ohio.  She married the man of her dreams in September and on Monday, February 4, 2013, Catherine was one of 22 interpreters in the state officially recognized by The Supreme Court of Ohio at the Third Annual Court Interpreter Certification Ceremony, which took place at the Thomas J. Moyer Ohio Judicial Center.

 There are around 25,000 cases per year in Ohio that require a court interpreter and certification helps ensure due process for those who don’t understand English.

 The Supreme Court began certifying court interpreters in 2010. A new rule requires all Ohio courts to use a certified language or a sign language interpreter during court procedures if needed and when available. It went into effect at the beginning of this year.

Bruno Romero, with the Supreme Court of Ohio’s Interpreter Services Program, said it takes about a year to complete the certification process.

“Passing the test is difficult so it takes a lot of work and preparation and for them it becomes a meaningful experience,” Romero said.

Catherine is now certified in Spanish and plans to be certified in French this October, which will make her the only interpreter in Ohio certified in two languages.

 “The sky’s the limit for me in regards to language acquisition and having the privilege of being part of giving access to justice to those who are limited English proficient.  I will also pursue certification in Portuguese, and Italian and eventually take on the challenge of learning another language, such as American Sign Language, which is in such high demand.  I want to do my upmost with the gift of speaking legalese in various languages and all the opportunities that Cleveland Municipal Court has offered me,” she said.

 Born in Colombia and raised in Venezuela, Catherine came to the United States in 1997 and settled in Perrysburg, Ohio.  She decided to be an interpreter as part of a work-study program in France, sponsored by Bowling Green State University at “L’institut de Goût de la Vallée de la Loire” (The Institute of Taste in the Loire Valley).

 “My internship involved interpreting wine, beer, chocolate and cheese tastings all over France for Spanish, Italian, and English speakers into French. That experience inspired me to become a professional interpreter,” she said.

 Catherine worked as an interpreter in the Toledo area before joining the Cleveland Municipal Court in 2009.


Catherine showing her Certificate Recognition from the Supreme Court of Ohio


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