From ATA’s Divisions: The Spanish Division

ATA SPD Low res

By Francesca Samuel
ATA Spanish Division Administrator

When I was asked to write an article for the newest ATA blog, I felt excited and honored to be asked to contribute to its maiden voyage. What would I write about? What would new members want to know? How could I engage them, if only for a few minutes? I thought about the beginning of my career as a translator and the benefits that the ATA membership brought to my professional life and then I knew exactly what I wanted to share.

The Spanish Language Division (SPD), the largest of the American Translators Association’s 17 divisions, has a leadership committee, a webpage, a Yahoo Group listserv known as Espalista, and a newsletter known as Intercambios available to you immediately upon becoming a member.

Top reasons to belong are as follows:

  •  The opportunity to advertise your services on the ATA’s online Directory.
  • Connect with well-seasoned translators, interpreters, writers, and agencies who share your interests and concerns.
  • Obtain the education to expand your translation and/or interpreting skills by attending professional development conferences and seminars offered throughout the country.
  • Gain the knowledge necessary to succeed, from the latest terminology to the latest technology, and then some.
  • Take advantage of member-only discounts on business services, including professional liability insurance plans.

The rewards of an ATA membership are endless and PRICELESS! No other organization offers the opportunities for professional development, marketing and betterment of our industry. If you are looking to take your career or your business to the next level, look no further.

There is no better way to accomplish this than to attend the ATA Annual Conference, or any other professional event, for that matter. But specially, the ATA Annual Conference is a unique opportunity that brings all the industry’s principal players under one roof. From the pre-conference seminars, where you will find the highest level of workshops, to the Job Marketplace and Exhibit Hall, to the ATA Board general session, to the individual sessions offered throughout this three day event, nothing prepares you better to face the rest of your life as a professional translator and/or interpreter.

The ATA also offers other professional development events such as local and regional training opportunities, webinars and access to a myriad of tools, such as participation in online forums and listservs. Additionally, both the ATA and the SPD have launched pages on several social forums such as LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter. You will find these forums to be extremely useful with lots of current information pertinent to our industry.

The ATA SPD encourages you to participate in our forums. Also, if you are planning to attend this year’s annual conference, feel free to look us up. We will be wearing buttons that will clearly identify us as SPD leadership committee members. Don’t hesitate to step up and let us know who you are. Whether you are a member of our Division, or not, you are cordially invited to register for our SPD Annual Dinner event set for Friday, November 8, 2013 at 6:30 p.m. More information will be posted as we get closer to the conference date.

If you have any questions or would like more information about the Spanish Division, please feel free to visit our webpage, or contact me directly by email at or by calling (520) 401-0668.

Look forward to meeting you in San Antonio!!


About the author: Francesca Samuel is the current administrator of the American Translators Association Spanish Language Division and has served as treasurer (2002-2004) and past assistant administrator (2004-2010). She is a member of the ATA Spanish, Interpreters, Medical, Technology and Translation Company Divisions. Ms. Samuel is also a member of the National Assoc. of Judiciary Interpreters and Translators (NAJIT), has served in various of NAJIT’s committees, Additionally, she is member of the Pima Community College Translation Studies Advisory Committee. She is the founder and president of A la Carte Translations, a web-based translation business, and vice president of Arizona Translators and Interpreters, Inc. Francesca is originally from Puerto Rico.

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