New Board 2019-2020 & Free membership FY 2019-2020

Board of Directors

President: Kim Barlow
Vice President: Cat Dvar
Treasurer: Celia Mojica
Secretary: Deborah Perry

Regional Representatives

West Rep: Joan Wattman
Boston Rep: Tom Lauterborn
Central Co-Reps: Rachel Boll & John Urato
Southeast Co-Reps: Nicolette Hagman & Sharon Mendes
Northeast Co-Reps: Veronica Barry & LeWana Clark

Please look for information and updates coming soon! We will be getting trained and up and running in the next couple of months. So please stay tuned…

Please also enjoy free membership for one more year, Fiscal Year 2019-2020, by registering or renewing your membership at

Free Membership 2019-2020 & Board/Region Rep Voting!

Dear members of MassRID,

Very exciting news!

For the first time in over 8 years we have a FULL BOARD SLATE AND FULL REGION REP SLATE!

I’m thrilled to be able to announce the candidates for the Board of Directors and Region Reps from our wonderful community here in Massachusetts:

Board of Directors Slate

President: Kim Barlow
Vice President: Cat Dvar
Treasurer: Celia Mojica
Secretary: Deborah Perry

Regional Representatives Slate

West Rep: Joan Wattman
Boston Rep: Tom Lauterborn
Central Co-Reps: Rachel Boll & John Urato
Southeast Co-Reps: Nicolette Hagman & Sharon Mendes
Northeast Co-Reps: Veronica Barry & LeWana Clark

Due to the transitions MassRID has been undergoing over the last year, we are waiving membership dues for FY 2019-2020.

Therefore, if you are a FY2018-2019 member of MassRID you will automatically be enrolled as a FY2019-2020 member.

If you are not currently a member and would like to join, please sign up for free membership here. Online registration is preferred. Please click here to sign-up: MassRID FY2018-2020 Membership Registration/Renewal.

Two ballots, Board of Directors Slate, and Region Rep Slate will be going out in a separate email only to Voting Members of MassRID. If anyone is eligible to be a voting member and has not received the ballot, please have them contact and ballots will be sent to them.

Thank you all for being members of MassRID- I’m looking forward to our future! MassRID is the membership, and we together are MassRID!

ASL Version of this post.

Also, please see attached letter to the Members of MassRID (vlog version here: Letter to MassRID Membership).

Lauren Parlapiano
President MassRID 2016-2018
Vice President MassRID 2014-2016

Fall General Meeting: Save the Date 9/15/18

MassRID General Meeting
Holyoke Community College
Saturday, September 15, 2018
The terms have expired for all members of the board and we will be holding elections for the new board at this meeting.  Nominations are currently being accepted – please consider serving on the board!

Community Forum: TOMORROW

Dear Community,

MassRID and MSAD are coming together to host a community forum partnering with WMAD to discuss several pressing issues affecting our Deaf and Interpreting communities. MCDHH Commissioner Heidi Reed will also be in attendance.

Thursday, July 12, 2018



1881 Worcester Road

Framingham, MA


This event will be live-streamed on Facebook at the event page HERE

All members of the Deaf and Interpreting communities are invited to attend. Please see attached flyer for details and share widely with your networks.

Hope to see a lot of folks there!

Community Forum Flyer 71218

Winter General Meeting 3/10 10-3:30PM @ NECC

After our last attempt got snowed out, we will finally be having our winter General Meeting March 10th!
In the morning, we will have a short business meeting and then spend most of the time recapping information about the licensure. As mentioned in a previous address to membership, our treasurer position remains vacant. If anyone would like to nominate themselves or a fellow member, please do so. This organization is member-driven, and we can use all the support we can get! All E-Board positions are up for voting in May as well, so if anyone has nominations for any positions, please bring them to the meeting or email the vice president/president with nominations.
Notes from Boston Town Hall on licensure are attached to this email (these are the same notes that were sent out a while ago) and notes from the Western Mass Town Hall will be disseminated before the general meeting. During the meeting, the floor will also be opened for any original comments, questions, or thoughts that are not captured in the notes pertaining to licensure. 
In the afternoon, there will be region breakout sessions for 1 hour to provide an opportunity for each region to discuss with local colleagues the various issues and challenges interpreters encounter in their practice. During the breakout sessions, one person from each region should take informal notes to be brought back to a large group discussion in which each region has a chance to share what was discussed in the breakout sessions. The large group discussion will continue for 1 hour. The goal of these breakout sessions is to learn and share what issues interpreters face in their respective regions as well as in MA as a whole. In this way, we can figure out collectively ways for MassRID to be supportive of interpreters on state and local levels. 
Saturday 3/10/2018 10:00-3:30PM
  • Updates on interpreter licensure & business meeting: 10:00-1:00PM
  • Regional breakout sessions: 1:30-2:30PM
  • Large group discussion: 2:30-3:30PM
Northern Essex Community College
100 Elliott St, Haverhill, MA 
           Spurk Hall (Building C) 
           Lecture Hall A (first floor)
Attendance is strongly encouraged as licensure will will directly impact interpreters working in Massachusetts. Please also share with interpreters who may not be MassRID members.           
Thank you to our NE Region Reps Heather Hutter and Veronica Barry for hosting this meeting! If you have any questions about the logistics of this meeting, please contact them at

Boston Area Licensure Town Hall

MassRID will be hosting a Town Hall in Boston on 11/13/2017 to discuss the interpreter licensure bill. A second town hall will also be held in Western Mass, date and exact location pending.

The licensure bill is of extreme importance to our field in Massachusetts, and will impact our daily work as interpreters as well as the systems within which we work. It also directly affects the Deaf and Deafblind Communities and student interpreters. MassRID’s response to this bill will be a way to represent the general consensus of Deaf and hearing interpreters on a state level.

The town hall is a professional forum for interpreters working in Massachusetts to discuss the bill in detail. MassRID will document the result of the two dialogues, and from this discussion draft a letter with the general consensus of the bill to the state. It will be hosted entirely in ASL.

Below is information about the licensure bill proposed for Massachusetts interpreters by Cat Dvar, as well as MSAD’s response and endorsement for the proposed bill. Please read through both if you haven’t done so already.

Monday 11/13/2017
Jackson Mann School
40 Armington St,
Allston, MA 02134

Parking available on-site: school garage and parking lot.
Accessible by green line.

Attendance is strongly encouraged. Please share with interpreters who may not be receiving this email because they are not members of MassRID.

— Thank you,
Lauren Parlapiano
President, MassRID


Information About the Licensure Bill

Letter to Senator Welch from the Massachusetts State Association of the Deaf (MSAD)

The Comprehensive ASL/English Interpreter and Oral Transliterator LICENSURE Bill (Bill S174)

The ASL/English Interpreter and Oral Transliterator REGISTRATION Bill (Bill S173)

Text of an email from Cat B. Dvar, Esq., Attorney and ASL/English Interpreter to the Deaf and Interpreting community dated May 2017:

ASL version of this email

* <>*


The Comprehensive ASL/English Interpreter and Oral Transliterator LICENSURE
Bill (Bill S174) was heard by the Joint Committee on Consumer Protection
and Professional Licensure on May 16th.

The text of the Bill can be found here

*The ASL/English Interpreter and Oral Transliterator REGISTRATION Bill
(Bill S173) is PENDING*. *The Public Hearing FOR THE REGISTRATION
BILL before the Joint Committee on Consumer Protection and Professional
Licensure will be held JUNE 6th at 1pm – SEE
<> for more information about the
status of that Bill, the public hearing, etc.*

The text of THE REGISTRY BILL can be found at

Prior to the public hearing on s174 (LICENSURE), the word on the street was
that the Committee planned to vote favorably on the Bill. We don’t know if
that’s what happened, but I spoke to an aide in Senator Welch’s office who
told me he’d let me know next week.

The Committee is still taking written testimony on a rolling basis until
they announce their decision. Because everyone is focused on the budget
right now, they probably won’t be announcing their decision for several
weeks. NOW IS THE TIME TO SEND YOUR TESTIMONY! *The Committee members can
be found here: *


Whether you are for the Bill or against, or if you have suggestions for
specific changes – NOW IS THE TIME to tell every senator and representative
on the Joint Committee. ALSO, even if you are against this specific bill,
but you support having interpreter licensure in MA – PLEASE TELL THE JOINT
REGISTRATION or BOTH FAIL/S, it is critical that the Legislature has
Licensure/Registration on their radar, so that the next time the Community
submits a Bill, it will be taken seriously.

Here’s what happens next for THE LICENSURE BILL (S174):

If the Joint Committee on Consumer Protection and Professional Licensure
votes favorably, the next stop will be the Committee on Health Care and
Finance. If they vote favorably, then it will go to the Joint Ways and
Means Committee. That’s where it’s died twice before.

If it gets to the Joint Ways and Means Committee, and you’re in favor of
the Bill, that’s where the community’s advocacy will be sorely needed! This
means repeated trips to the State House, contacting your legislators, the
Joint Committee on Ways and Means members, phone calls, letters, emails,
cute little flyers and stickers, baked goods (NOT KIDDING), thank you
cards, catchy slogans, etc.

However you may feel about MCDHH, the Commission will not be able to
administer licensure without at least *$150,000 or more* in seed money from
the Legislature. Once the program is up and running it should be
self-sustaining via licensure fees charged to interpreters, interpreter
agencies, VRI agencies. But it will cost a great deal of money to create
the program: an administrative position (Part Time or Full Time) will need
to be created with the required job description (from scratch), multiple
meetings will need to be held (with communication access for all) to
establish an independent grievance board, once the board is established,
there will need to be MULTIPLE meetings with the named stakeholders to
create rules, regulations and policies to govern the board (with
communication access for all), etc. – It’s a hugely expensive task. *Everyone
Under the Sun in the Legislature will need to hear from the Community about

*Full Disclosure: I am not neutral although I am presenting this
information in as neutral a way as possible. I support S174, the
comprehensive licensure bill. I also support S173 as an alternative if S174
is not feasible. Going forward I will be available as a resource any way
the Community would like me to be, but I will not initiate any public
debate on this issue. Whatever comes next is for the Community to decide.
Many thanks for all of your hard work and dedication on this issue,*

*Cat B. Dvar, Esq.*
*ASL/English Interpreter*

Register Now for 2017 MSAD State Conference!

Please join us at the 2017 MSAD Conference! MassRID will be partnering with MSAD and hosting a variety of interpreting workshops and events, and we want YOU to come and be a part of the action, fun, and learning!

To top it all off, the MSAD sponsored workshops are FREE to all and the Saturday interpreting workshops are FREE admission for MassRID members! Not only will your presence help in keeping MSAD strong, but you will have the chance to socialize, learn, network, and support two extremely important organizations in our field.

There are events and workshops all day long, with a variety of topics for you to attend. Here is what you can expect for MassRID interpreting tracks:

Saturday, September 2311:30 a.m. workshops held by MassRID at College of the Holy Cross:

Music Interpreting presented by Janis Cole and LeWana Clark

Advancing STEM learning and assessment in ASL: ASL Clear and ASLAI  presented by Jeanne Reis

1:30 p.m. workshops held by MassRID:

Theatre Interpreting presented by Sabrina Dennison

Conscious Vulnerability: Considerations for Sign Language Interpreters presented by Bill Millios

Not only will MassRID be hosting these interpreting tracks, but MSAD will be hosting several other workshops and presentations throughout the day that you should attend! Check the link at the bottom of this page for the full itinerary! In addition, MSAD will have exciting events each evening for you to attend. Membership will save you a few dollars, so consider becoming a member of MSAD! Your support ($20) will allow this organization to continue to provide outstanding service to the Deaf Community in Massachusetts!

Evening Fun (tickets required)** 

Friday, September 22: deafYOUTH & Dancing with the STARS! @ American Legion, 156 Boston Road Sutton, MA from 5:00 p.m. – 11:00 p.m.

Saturday, September 23: Dinner and The Deaf Gong Show @ College of the Holy Cross, Hogan Building, 1 College Street, Worcester, MA:00 p.m. – 11:00 p.m.

Sunday, September 24Free community forum and board meeting @  College of the Holy Cross, Hogan Building, 1 College Street, Worcester, MA from 8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. 

**Friday and Saturday night events are $40 for members and $50 for non-members; Friday night only is $20 for members and $25 for non-members; Saturday night only is $30 for members, and $35 for non-members.               

Again, please remember that events, meals, socials, workshops and presentations are being held all day by both MSAD and MassRID, so don’t miss out on any of the action and attend all three days of this incredible conference. Click the link below for an itinerary or to buy tickets or check out the vlog below for more info about the conference!

Please join us!!