In my professional life, I am a nationally certified sign language interpreter, licensed Signing Smart instructor, and owner and president of Signing With Miss Steph, LLC. Really though, the two are very much intertwined.
As a child in elementary school, I started my own journey with American Sign Language (ASL) thanks to the many Deaf friends, their teachers and interpreters I shared my classrooms with. I was able to learn my second language in the most natural way possible - through authentic day-to-day interactions. In this way, I learned firsthand how sign language could unlock the door to communication, learning, and relationship-building.
During the next several years, I would have the chance to work in a variety of settings including business and government, medical and mental health, theater, religious, and video relay. In 2008, back in Northeast Ohio, I proudly received my NIC certification from the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf. Since that time, I have added more roles to my life including interpreter, intervention specialist, caregiver, presenter, mentor, teacher, and—above all—mom. Through all of this, authentic interactions have been, and continue to be, the hallmark and goal of all my work.
In fact, in that newest, and most important role, I discovered the passion for what I do today: teaching young children and their families to communicate and to learn through the use of ASL—all with amazing success.
My blog is an extension of this passion as I reach out to all families and caretakers of little ones - encouraging them to sign, supporting them though fun times and tough times, and encouraging them to be their very best for the sake of the important little ones in their lives.