During her 35-year career in the court reporting field, Ana earned a reputation within the legal community as someone demonstrating the highest standards of integrity and professionalism. After retiring as a freelance court reporter, her dedication to delivering exceptional service as an office manager and sales executive of two global court reporting firms won the trust of clients, resulting in her managing four of the largest high-profile cases in the world:
- International Paper vs. Affiliated FM Insurance Co., et al. (555 national depositions)
- Bowoto vs. Chevron Corporation (280 global depositions)
- In Re TFT-LCD (Flat Panel) Antitrust Litigation and its companion case, In Re Cathode Ray Tube (CRT) Antitrust Litigation (over 500 combined global depositions)
With the court reporting field facing a shortage since the introduction of third-party contracting in the 1990s, followed by budget cuts resulting in electronic recording (ER) replacing official reporters in some state courts nationwide, Ana’s passion for educating the legal community and general public about court reporters’ crucial role as irreplaceable, impartial guardians of the record has grown. In 2004, she began speaking at legal associations and educational programs throughout the greater Bay Area about court reporting products, technology, services and ethics:
- San Francisco Legal Professionals Association
- Mt. Diablo Legal Professionals Association
- Contra Costa County Legal Professionals Association
- San Francisco State University Paralegal Studies
- Cal State East Bay Paralegal Studies
- BerkeleyLaw (Boalt Hall), University of California, Berkeley
- California Court Reporters Association
Ana also began speaking at Argonaut, Golden State, West Valley, College of Marin and Humphreys court reporting schools to share her expertise and encourage students to continue their studies and not give up.
In January 2017, Ana and a panel of experts presented the first-ever court-reporting-related Ethics MCLE at the Bar Association of San Francisco (BASF): Can You Say That? Legal Ethics of Working with Court Reporters.
- The Court Reporter’s Dilemma: Interrupt or Drop
- Guidelines for Respectful Attorney-Reporter Relationships
- Educating the Legal Community Through Social Media
- How to Interrupt Proceedings: Feel the Fear and Speak Up Anyway
- Mock Trials: Developing Crucial Professional Skills Before It Counts
- WANTED: Court and Deposition Reporters
As Marketing Coordinator of BASF’s Paralegal Section, the first and only non-attorney section of the Bar, Ana is a regular contributor to BASF’s Bulletin print newsletter and Legal by the Bay blog and has published several articles in the following periodicals:
- The Legal Secretary magazine (a publication of Legal Secretaries, Inc.);
- CCRA Online (an e-newsletter published by the California Court Reporters Association);
- The Trial Lawyer (a publication of San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association); and others.
In 2008, she began offering internships for advanced court reporting students in mock depositions and mock trials at law firms, BerkeleyLaw, private organizations, high schools, and San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association’s annual mock trial competition, in collaboration with law firm and corporate administrators, trial lawyers, high school instructors, and law school professors.
Students from Bay Area cities as well as throughout the state and from as far away as the East Coast participate at these mock events to experience being The Reporter of Record. These mock depositions and mock trials are win-win experiences for all participants: law students, attorneys, judges, court reporting students and court reporters.
Ana’s interns gain confidence and achieve a deep understanding of the legal, ethical and professional responsibilities of working reporters. These practical skills events, combined with her coaching and 5 Golden Rules to Steno Mastery course, based on her e-book, 0-225: Your Guide to Writing Mastery, assist students and new reporters to overcome obstacles to achieving mastery in their chosen field.
Ana has a lifelong dedication to personal and professional development. In 2011, she became a certified coach and offers powerful, scientifically-proven processes and tools that transform lives, including her own. For more information, see her Coaching page.
Ana took the National Court Reporters Association’s RPR exam* one week before the Court Reporters Board of California’s CSR exam** and passed all legs *** of both exams on her first attempt. Twenty years after freelancing in court and depositions, she managed the San Francisco office of a national court reporting firm before transitioning into sales for ten+ years. During this time, she managed or oversaw four of the largest class action cases in the world. In 2008, she began offering internships to court reporting students throughout the greater Bay Area at mock depositions and mock trials, in collaboration with trial lawyers, law firm administrators and law school professors. Court reporting (CR) students eagerly travel from as far away as the East Coast to participate at these mock events! Ana is committed to helping CR students and court reporters master the art of steno writing and feel confident in the performance of their duties, as well as educating the legal community they serve about reporters’ crucial role as impartial guardians of the record. See Ana’s Reporting Internships and Consulting pages for more details.
* Registered Professional Reporter
** Certified Shorthand Reporter
*** “Legs” refer to the required portions of court reporting exams: (1) writing dictation on a steno machine, and (2) Written Knowledge Tests [WKTs] and Professional Practice Exams — English; grammar; punctuation; legal and medical terminology; ethics; and the government and civil codes governing court reporting services. The CSR and RPR exams require different WKTs, speeds and transcription accuracy percentage rates in order to pass.
Photos of Ana by Lisa Mann Photography. Bulletin article by BASF. Internship photos/graphic by Ana Fatima Costa. All rights reserved.