2017 PLD Election ― Meet the Candidates



Mirna Soares, PLD Administrator 2015-2017

Every other year, each ATA Division selects a new slate of officers for its administration.

Since 2015, I have had the pleasure to serve as Administrator, alongside Assistant Administrator Érika Lessa, and to work with the Leadership Council (LC) and other PLD members in order to keep the Portuguese Language Division’s legacy activities going and to develop new ones.

If you enjoyed a session with a guest speaker or a PLD party at the ATA Conference, chatted with friends at our new PLD Meet-ups, kept informed through our social media or listserv, contributed to our blog, or listened to our podcasts during your commute, you can thank your fellow PLD members who volunteered their time and effort.

The PLD is a place to feel at home in the ATA universe: everything organized and carried out by our Division starts with an idea that is developed into action by volunteers, who are so many of us.

To coordinate this group of incredible volunteers, we rely on members of the PLD Administration—and now it’s time to pick new ones!

All PLD members received an email from ATA Headquarters on June 27, announcing that Rafa Lombardino and Roberta Barroca are candidates for Administrator and Assistant Administrator, respectively. It is a joy to know that these two LC members are eager to continue making their contributions. Rafa has been editing the PLD Blog for two years and is one of the most energetic and innovative people I know; Roberta is super-talented and creative (just read one of her posts and you’ll agree!). With their easygoing personalities, I’m sure these two will make a dynamic duo.

If you are interested in becoming an Administrator or Assistant Administrator, you can request that your name be added as a candidate on the ballot. Additional candidates must be voting members of the Association. Deadline for receipt of nominations to add candidates to the slate is August 11 (45 days after publication of slate); each nomination must include a written acceptance letter and candidate statement from the candidate to be added, and sent (mail, fax, or email) to:

American Translators Association
Attn: Jamie Padula
225 Reinekers Lane, Suite 590
Alexandria, Virginia 22314
Fax: +1-703- 683-6122

If no further candidates are received, this will be an uncontested election, so officers will be declared by acclamation at the Portuguese Language Division’s Annual Meeting during ATA’s 58th Annual Conference (October 25-28, 2017, in Washington, DC). Further details on how to become a candidate can be found in the June 27 email sent to all PLD members from ATA Headquarters; if you have further questions, please contact Jamie Padula, ATA Chapter and Division Relations Manager, at jamie@atanet.org.

It’s vital that you participate in this process by showing up at the meeting, voting online (if the election is contested), or simply supporting the candidates. EVERY PLD member can participate, and, if this election becomes contested, EVERY PLD member can vote, even if you are not an ATA voting member. However, candidates have to be ATA voting members. To learn how you can become a voting member, check out this page. To know more about how Division elections work, read this post by former PLD officer Naomi Sutcliffe de Moraes.

Make sure you read the Candidate Statements below to get to know them better. If you are planning on going to the ATA Conference, please come to our Annual Meeting; we will be posting the schedule with the time and place soon.

Mirna Soares has been a translator and an interpreter for as long as she can remember. What started as a job to get her through college became a career, at first sidetracking other activities and then taking up front and center. She holds a Master’s in Language Studies from PUC-Rio and has worked in areas as varied as subtitling, simultaneous interpretation and book translations. Before she became the division Administrator, Mirna was involved in many ATA activities and had the opportunity to speak in Annual Conferences, volunteer for the PLD Leadership Council and become a Certified Translator from Portuguese into English and English into Portuguese. Originally from Brazil, Mirna currently lives in Washington, D.C. where she is a staff interpreter for the Inter-American Defense College.


rafa orangeRafa Lombardino (email)

I joined the ATA in 2007 and became certified in the English > Portuguese language pair that same year. In 2013 I earned my Portuguese > English certification. My career changed dramatically in 2009, after I attended the 50th Annual Conference in New York and got to know members of the Portuguese Language Division. Learning about the experiences of translators working in my language pairs and collaborating with them throughout the past decade has been a big factor in my growth both as a professional and as an individual.

I am running for Administrator because I would like to give back to our community. If elected, one of my goals will be to make sure that all PLD members are aware of how the division works and how it can help them find collaborators, pursue new professional opportunities, and share experiences.

I have been part of the PLD Leadership Council since early 2016, editing the PLD blog and bringing articles of interest to our members. By updating the blog regularly, we’ve been able to increase our online presence and reach out to more members.

As the PLD Administrator, I would like to intensify that online presence, to expand a forum where members can share their ideas and opinions about different aspects of the profession and stay in touch all-year round, not just during conference week. I also want to help the ATA elevate the status of translators and interpreters as agents of change worldwide.

I have worked as a translator for 20 years and I specialize in communications, technology, EH&S, education, and literature. I have an Associates Degree in Computer Sciences, emphasis on Data Processing, from Liceu Santista, a technical high school in Brazil, as well as a BA in Social Communications, Major in Journalism, from Universidade Santa Cecília. In 2008, I earned a Professional Certificate in English/Spanish Translation and Interpretation from the University of California San Diego Extension and two years later became an instructor there in order to teach newcomers about the role of technology in the T&I industry.

I am very excited to have this opportunity to work with all PLD members over the next two years.


img_8925Roberta Barroca (email)

I am pleased to be nominated to serve as assistant administrator of the Portuguese Language Division.

I’ve been a Brazilian Portuguese-to-English interpreter and translator since 2007. Having spent a great deal of my career in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, I’ve had the opportunity to work in different sectors ranging from oil and gas to sports and medicine. As fate would have it, I ended up specializing in motivational speakers, gurus and coaches.

I attended my first ATA Conference in 2007 in San Francisco and since then I’ve had great respect and admiration for the work carried out by the ATA. In 2016 I joined PLD’s Leadership Council and, among other things, helped to organize the ATA PLD meet-ups, a new initiative the PLD undertook with great success.

If elected, I will work toward the following goals:

  • Support the administrator in whatever she deems important for the PLD.
  • Strengthen the dialog among division members by offering several attractive networking platforms and events.
  • Work towards attracting new members.
  • Find out how the ATA can best assist its members and how its members can best assist the ATA.

Ultimately, I would like to connect with all PLD members and expand the relevance of the division through their input and participation.


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