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Program Faculty

Carolyn Ball, Ph.D., CI, CT The Executive Director of the VRS Interpreting Institute (VRSII) in Salt Lake City, Utah.


Carolyn has a passion for learning and teaching. Before her position at the VRSII, she was an Associate Professor of Interpreting and the Director of the American Sign Language & Interpreting Program at William Woods University in Fulton, MO. Before this position, she was an Assistant Professor at Salt Lake Community College in the Interpreter Training Program in Salt Lake City, UT. Prior to this position, she taught American Sign Language Courses at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah. Currently, she is teaching as an adjunct professor at the University of North Florida.


Her love of students and teaching for over twenty-five years has been a huge part of her quest to understand the history of interpreter educators. The commitment and hard work of these educators has become a dream for Dr. Ball to document so that others may understand the history of these pioneers. Her dissertation, the history of interpreter educators from 1800 - 2006 is a written history of these educators. Often, you will find her interviewing pioneers of the past and making sure that others may enjoy this same history. You will find the documentation of all this history in her newly published book, Legacies and Legends: History of Interpreter Education from 1800 to the 21st Century.


Dr. Ball received her B.S., and M.A. in Administration from Brigham Young University - then earned her Ph.D. in 2007 in Adult Education from Capella University. She has served on the Conference of Interpreters Board for twelve years in a variety of positions, three of which were President. Carolyn is the proud aunt of 21 nieces and nephews and spends her free time riding her Trek Madone road bike.

Eileen Forestal, Ph.D., RSC

...has been Coordinator and Professor of ASL and Deaf Studies and ASL-English Interpreting at Union County College in New York for 33 years. She holds a doctorate in Postsecondary Education and Adult Learning and a M.Ed. in Deaf Education. She has been a certified Deaf interpreter with the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf, Inc. since 1979 and has a certificate of teaching ASL and Interpreting. A nationwide consultant and trainer on ASL and interpreting topics, Dr. Forestal has been a member of the National Consortium of Interpreter Education Centers' (NCIEC) Deaf Interpreter Work Team since its inception in 2006. She is also a cooperating program representative to the NCIEC's Outcomes Circle for Interpreter Education. Dr. Forestal is a published author of articles and research on interpreting, was co-author and co-director of a DVD production, Deaf Interpreting: Team Strategies, through Gallaudet University.

Carol J. Patrie, Ph.D., CSC, SC:L, CI, CT

...has fffover 45 years experience as a professional interpreter and interpreter educator. She began her career as one of the first interpreters at NTID when it opened in 1968. The following year she began her teaching career. She has remained enthusiastically involved in the profession since then.


Patrie is currently an independent researcher, writer, and a national and international consultant on interpretation and teaching interpretation and owns her own consulting business, Effective Interpreting, Inc. Patrie is the author of the eight volume The Effective Interpreting Series, and the three volume Interpreting in Medical, Legal, and Insurance Settings. Her most recent releases are Translating from ASL and Fingerspelled Word Recognition through Rapid Serial Visual Presentation. Her works are widely used in interpreter education programs and cited internationally. She is also Director of Curriculum and Instruction for The Effective Interpreting Professional Education Series, Language Matters,Inc. and is a member of the editorial boards of the International Journal of Interpreter Education and The Journal of Interpretation. She is a past president of the Conference of Interpreter Trainers and is a recipient of the Mary Stotler Award.


She served on the graduate faculty at Gallaudet University for nearly two decades and was Professor and Director of the Master of Arts in Interpreting, which she was also instrumental in designing. She received the Outstanding Graduate Faculty award while at Gallaudet.


When she is not working on writing books, traveling, or teaching, she enjoys working in her glass studio and her extensive gardens.

Len Roberson, Ph.D., SC:L, CI, CT,

...has been involved in the fields of deaf education and interpreting for 23 years. He is an active researcher, interpreter, and interpreter educator whose passion is to prepare others to be dynamic educators. He received his Ph.D. from Gallaudet University. Dr. Roberson is currently the Dean of the Graduate School at the University of North Florida and Assistant Vice-President of Academic Technology. He is also a tenured Associate professor in the ASL/English Interpreting graduate program - a program he developed and founded at UNF. Since joining UNF in 1998, Dr. Roberson has received more than 3 million dollars in external funding as the principal investigator for numerous grants.


Dr. Roberson maintains an active scholarly agenda and his research interests include the study of interpreting in legal settings, teacher effectiveness and preparation, and service-learning in interpreter education. Dr. Roberson has presented numerous papers and workshops in North America and abroad. He is co-editor for the Journal of Interpretation published by RID. He has served as Proceedings co-editor for the Conference of Interpreter Trainers for 6 years. He has served on RID's Certification Council and is a subject matter expert for RID's certification and testing department. He is co-owner of an interpreting agency in northeast Florida through which he interprets primarily in legal settings. Dr. Roberson resides in Jacksonville, Florida with his beautiful wife and seven beautiful children, 4 girls and 3 boys.

Debra Russell, Ph.D., COI, SC:L an ASL-English interpreter, interpreter Educator, and Director of the Western Canadian Centre of Deaf Studies at the University of Alberta, Canada. She current holds the David Peikoff Chair of Deaf Studies. Her interpreting practice spans over thirty years and continues to be community based across a range of settings. Dr. Russell received her Ph.D. in Educational Psychology from the University of Calgary and a Post-Doctoral Fellowship at the University of Alberta. She was a founding member of the Association of Visual Language Interpreters of Canada (AVLIC) and has served in a variety of leadership roles over the organization's history. In addition to her teaching responsibilities, she maintains an active research program, with current projects that focus on interpreting in educational contexts, Deaf interpreters, and legal interpreting.


Dr. Russell is recognized internationally for pioneering efforts in the field of sign language interpretation and adult education. She is extensively published on topics that include comparison of simultaneous and consecutive interpreting, team interpreting, advocacy, ethics, mediated education, and interpreting in legal settings. Her current research projects include a demographic survey of ASL-English interpreters in Canada; an examination of the linguistic access that deaf children have when accessing education that is mediated via sign language interpretation; a survey of best practices of interpreters in legal settings; and the documentation of Ukrainian Sign Language in collaboration with the Institute of Special Pedagogy in Kyiv, Ukraine. She is the author of Interpreting in Legal Contexts, published by Linstok Press in their Dissertation Series. Dr. Russell was elected President of the World Association of Sign Language Interpreters in July 2011. She is also a dedicated student of yoga who loves to travel.

Sherry Shaw, Ed.D., CSC,

...has been an interpreter educator for 25 years and is a Professor and Program Director for the bachelor's and master's degrees in ASL/English Interpreting at the University of North Florida. After 18 years at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, she came to UNF in 2007 to start the "2 + 2" BS degree program. In 2009, the master's degree program was developed using a distance learning model. Dr. Shaw's research on interpreting student cognitive and motivational characteristics is ongoing and a recent study measured spoken and signed language students' cognitive flexibility, visual and verbal memory, attention shift, and processing speed. Additional research interests include community-based learning in interpreter education, social connected-ness of Deaf children and senior citizens, interpreting student aptitude, and evidence-based admission testing. She serves as co-editor of the Journal of Interpretation and is a reviewer for the Journal of Community Engagement and Scholarship. She was awarded an Oscar Muñoz Presidential Professorship at UNF for 2011-2013 and the Outstanding Graduate Teaching Award in 2013. Dr. Shaw is the author of Service Learning in Interpreter Education: Strategies for Extending Student Involvement in the Deaf Community, published by Gallaudet University Press in 2013.


Dr. Shaw was a faculty intern to the Karl-Franzens University of Graz (Austria) in 2002, and since coming to UNF, she developed Transformational Learning Opportunities (TLOs) that allow interpreting students to participate in short-term study abroad experiences to spoken and signed language interpreting programs at the University of Graz and the University of Ljubljana (Slovenia). As part of these TLOs, students tour the United Nations in Vienna, study in the translation library in Graz, attend interpreting classes in Ljubljana, and interact in the local Deaf community. In her spare time, Dr. Shaw enjoys writing, traveling, gardening, and spending time with family.

Marty Taylor, Ph. D., CSC, COI widely known as a talented and innovative educator, consultant, interpreter, and publisher whose work is recognized internationally. She is in demand as a speaker, workshop leader and mentor, and her educational materials are cited by interpreting programs, educators, and interpreter practitioners throughout North America and abroad. Thirty-plus years of dedication to the advancement of sign language interpretation have gained Dr. Taylor the respect of her colleagues, students, and clients. She established an Interpreter Education Program at Grant MacEwan College in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. She operates a publishing company, Interpreting Consolidated, which she created in 1993 to promote excellence within the field of sign language interpreting and provide consultation, evaluation, research, and publishing services to interpreting communities worldwide.


Dr. Taylor is the author of two seminal texts used in Interpreter Education Programs: Interpretation SKILLS: American Sign Language to English and Interpretation SKILLS: English to American Sign Language. Most recently, she is researching and writing on projects related to assessment and evaluation, material and curriculum development, distance learning, and VRS interpreter competencies. Some of her favorite activities include horseback riding on her world travels, enjoying family and friends, and swimming in the ocean.


She keeps up a hectic pace--traveling, consulting, publishing educational materials, advocating for the profession, and teaching interpreters in both distant and local classroom settings. Whenever time allows in her busy schedule, she still enjoys hands-on interpreting in the community.