6. Who administrates the FCICE?

6.1 Who is involved in the development and administration of the FCICE?

The FCICE for Spanish-English interpreters is administered under contract from the Administrative Office of the United States Courts by the National Center for State Courts, working with its collaborating partner, Second Language Testing, Inc., Rockville, Maryland.9

The National Center for State Courts (NCSC) is an independent, nonprofit organization dedicated to the improvement of justice.  It was founded in 1971 at the urging of Chief Justice Warren E. Burger.  NCSC accomplishes its mission by providing leadership and service to courts in the United States and internationally.  Programs related to language interpreting are just a few among many areas of work conducted by the NCSC.   The NCSC also provides research services, direct consulting, technical assistance, and educational programs in language interpreting.  In addition to the FCICE, another noteworthy NCSC program in this area is the administration of the Council for Language Access in the Courts (CLAC) to which more than half of the nation's state courts subscribe. However, the FCICE and the CLAC programs are totally separate and are separately administered.  For more information about NCSC, see www.ncsc.org.

Second Language Testing, Inc. (SLTI), is a unique company whose mission is to provide test development, translation/adaptation, and other related services in the areas of second language proficiency testing and the testing of nonnative English speakers. Its president, Charles W. Stansfield, Ph.D., was formerly the Director of Foreign Language Education and Testing Division, Center for Applied Linguistics in Washington, D.C., and the Associate Director, Language Programs, Educational Testing Service, Princeton, New Jersey. For more information about SLTI, see: www.2lti.com.

6.2 Consulting experts

FCICE Program
Officials of the United States Courts

Many dedicated professionals who strive to promote excellence in the court interpreting profession contributed to the development of the Spanish/English Federal Court Interpreter Certification Examination (FCICE) Program.  Under the leadership of the Director, James C. Duff, Deputy Director Jill C. Sayenga, and Associate Director Laura C. Minor, of the Administrative Office of the United States Courts (AOUSC), staff of the Court Services Office serve as stewards for the program.  These include Mary Louise Mitterhoff, Chief of the Court Services Office, Robert Lowney, Chief of the Court Programs Division, and Javier A. Soler, FCCI, Program Specialist.  As Contracting Officer’s Representative, Javier A. Soler currently serves and monitors the project, coordinates efforts and facilitates communication between the AO and its contractors.  For more information about the Administrative Office of the United States Courts, see http://www.uscourts.gov/FederalCourts/UnderstandingtheFederalCourts/FederalCourtsInAmericanGovernment.aspx.

For information specifically about the Court Interpreting program in the federal district courts, please see http://www.uscourts.gov/FederalCourts/UnderstandingtheFederalCourts/DistrictCourts/CourtInterpreters.aspx.

Many District Court Clerks assisted with the collection of an extensive body of court transcripts from which the test writers selected and edited source texts for the examination.  Their contributions were fundamental for achieving test validity.

Very special thanks are owed to the United States District Court Judges and experienced federal court attorneys who took the time to review and comment on the original Oral Examination drafts.  Their reviews ensured examination validity and task appropriateness.

  • Mr. Joseph C. Laws, Jr., Federal Public Defender, San Juan, Puerto Rico
  • Honorable John S. Martin, Jr., U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York
  • Honorable Carlos Moreno, U.S. District Court, Central District of California
  • Honorable Federico Moreno, U.S. District Court, Southern District of Florida
  • Honorable Michael B. Mukasey, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York
  • Honorable Ricardo Urbina, U.S. District Court, District of Columbia
  • Mr. Joseph Virgilio, CJA Panel Attorney, Washington, District of Columbia
  • Honorable Kimba M. Wood, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York
  • Mr. Ricardo Zwaig, private attorney and former Federal Public Defender, Washington, District of Columbia

Advisory Committee

Advice and policy guidance for the examination specifications were provided by a distinguished advisory committee of academics and federal court staff interpreters including:


  • Susan Berk-Seligson, Ph.D., Associate Professor – Spanish and Applied Linguistics, University of Pittsburgh
  • Bethany K. Dumas, Ph.D., Associate Professor – English, University of Tennessee
  • Nancy Schweda-Nicholson, Ph.D., Professor of Linguistics, University of Delaware


•    Elena De Jongh, FCCI, Staff Court Interpreter, Southern District of Florida
•    Ramón M. del Villar, FCCI, Staff Court Interpreter, Southern District of Texas
•    Kevin John DeVany, FCCI, Official Court Interpreter, Northern District of Illinois (Retired)
•    Nancy Festinger, FCCI, Chief Interpreter, Southern District of New York
•    Joyce Y. García, FCCI, Staff Interpreter, District of Arizona (Retired)
•    Ana-Cecilia Rosado, FCCI, Staff Court Interpreter, District of Rhode Island (Retired)
•    Lenne Rosen-Kabe, FCCI, Manager of Court Interpreters, Central District of California (Retired)
•    Teresa Salazar, FCCI, Director of Interpreter Services, District Court for the District of Columbia

Past Project Managers

  • William Hewitt, Project Manager, National Center for State Courts
  • Wanda Romberger, Project Manager, National Center for State Courts

Past Contracting Officer’s Representatives

  • Marijke van der Heide, Program Specialist, Administrative Office of the United States Courts
  • Carolyn Kinney, PhD, Administrative Office of the United States Courts

The Written Examination

The Written Examination was developed under the leadership of Charles W. Stansfield, working with a team of highly experienced specialists in the fields of applied linguistics and interpreting. 
The core Written Examination team members included, in addition to Dr. Stansfield:

  • Daniel J. Reed, Ph.D., Researcher and Lecturer in Applied Linguistics, Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana.
  • Jean Turner, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Applied Linguistics, Monterey Institute of International Studies.
  • Ana María Velasco, Ph.D., Visiting Professor of Translation and Interpretation, Monterey Institute of International Studies.

Other contributors to the first Written Examinations developed under contract with the NCSC who served in the roles of item writers, item reviewers, or examination reviewers include:

  • Ellie de la Bandera, Federally Certified Court Interpreter (FCCI)
  • Elena De Jongh, FCCI
  • Ramón M. del Villar, FCCI
  • Kevin John DeVany, FCCI
  • Nancy Festinger, FCCI
  • Joyce García, FCCI
  • Joe Harmon, FCCI, Adjunct Professor of Translation and Interpretation, Monterey Institute for International Studies
  • William Hewitt, Senior Research Associate, National Center for State Courts
  • Renee Jourdenais, Ph.D., Professor of Applied Linguistics, Monterey Institute for International Studies
  • Patricia Michelsen-King, FCCI
  • Gregory Miller, FCCI
  • Mario Montenegro, FCCI
  • Teresa Salazar, FCCI
  • Susana Santángelo, FCCI, medical translator
  • Rachel Spache-Koch, retired professional of ELS and test developer, University of Miami
  • Ricardo Zwaig, Esq.

Examination statistical analyses and equating for those early examinations were carried out by Bruce W. Davis, Ph.D., Deborah Ford and Lisa Kobe of CPS Human Resource Services and James Impara, Ph.D.


The Oral Examination

The lead writers for the first Oral Examinations developed under contract with the NCSC were Patricia Michelsen-King and Gregory Miller, federally certified interpreters with extensive experience as test writers and raters for federal and state certification examinations.  William Hewitt contributed to source document selection, consulted on English language usage, and coordinated all aspects of the test development, review, field testing and rating process.  Other principal contributors to test writing were federally certified interpreters Ellie de la Bandera, Denia McGuire, Myriam Sigler and Melinda Gonzalez-Hibner. 

Many other accomplished working interpreters with wide-ranging linguistic and cultural backgrounds contributed to those early Oral Examinations.  The interpreters who served on the original Advisory Committee also reviewed and commented on drafts of the Oral Examination texts.  In addition, other practicing Federally Certified Court Interpreters who served as reviewers, field test raters and interpreter/raters included:


·    Catherine Bahr

·        Donald Barnes

·       Rebeca Calderón

·    Eva Desrosiers

·        Laura Eastment

·       Corinne Edelson-Cline

·    Agustín de la Mora

·       Vivian Eriksen

·        Rossy Franklin

·    Victoria Fuñes

·        Sara García-Rangel

·       Paula Gold

·    Melinda González-Hibner

·       Cecilia Gutiérrez

·       Susan T. Hamer

·    Catalina María Johnson

·       Scott Loos

·        Dennis McKenna

·    Ruth Monroy

·       Mario Montenegro

·        Madeline Newman-Rios

·    Janis Palma

·        Marcia Parrón

·       Stephanie Penn

·    Roberto Pérez-Díaz

·       Moira Pujols-Quall

·       Nancy Schweda-Nicholson

·    Gladys Segal

·        Javier A. Soler

·       Sharon Spence

·    David Sperling

·        Elizabeth Taft-Smith

·       Hortensia Torres-Comas

·    Irene Tomassini

·        Ariel Torrone

·       Miguel Valenzuela

·    Adriana Weisz

·       Glenna White

·       Rafaela Worrell

·    Antonio T. Yañez