Americans Against Language Barriers

AALB Society of Professional Interpreters 2023 Conference

Building a World Where Language is No Longer a Barrier to Healthcare Access

Virtual & In-Person in Chicago
In-Person Cost: $185
Virtual Cost: $65
Register for the Conference

Loyola University
Lakeshore Campus
Chicago, Illinois

July 29th & July 30th, 2023
Saturday & Sunday

Limited to 75 Attendees

Dr. Theresa Mah, Illinois State Representative

Illinois State Representative Mah has been serving her constituents diligently since 2017. From 2021 to 2022, she held the position of Chair of the House Committee on Health Care Licenses. Currently, she holds a significant role in the House Speaker’s leadership team as the Majority Conference Chair.

An alumnus of UC Berkeley and a Ph.D. holder from the University of Chicago, Rep. Mah's commitment to education is apparent. As the daughter of immigrants, she is in a unique position to represent a majority immigrant community in her district. Furthermore, she is the co-chair of the Illinois Asian American Legislative Caucus, a significant role that facilitates her advocacy for the nine-member caucus.

Tram Bui, AALB Trainer

Ms. Tram Bui is a refugee from Vietnam who emigrated to the US in 1975 when she was 6 years old.  She has been a Vietnamese <> English interpreter and translator since 2004 and has earned her CMI (Certified Medical Interpreter) certification with the National Board of Certification for Medical Interpreters. She is an independent contractor who interprets in the field of medical, education, and community interpretation. She is a trainer for the Americans Against Language Barriers, (AALB is 501(c)(3)) a non-profit organization dedicated to improving the care of patients with limited English proficiency by training medical interpreters, providing language services, and advocating for policy reform. She served 5 years on the board of the Arizona Translators and Interpreters Association as VP and Member-at-Large.  She was the Vietnamese tester/evaluator for the Vietnamese Language Proficiency Test and the Interpreter Skills Test for Language Line Academy/Solutions.  Before becoming an interpreter, she taught Junior High ESL (English as a Second Language) for 5 years for Mesa Public Schools and also taught 2nd and 3rd grade for the Riverside Unified School District.

Kelly (Grzech) Henriquez, AALB Trainer

Kelly (Grzech) Henriquez is a dual-certified Spanish medical/healthcare interpreter in Richmond, Virginia. She acquired her BA from Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) with a concentration in Spanish and completed their SETI (Spanish/English Translation and Interpretation) program. Kelly began her career in language services as a Bilingual Patient Advocate at a local safety net clinic and has since been an on-site as an independent contractor in both medical and mental health facilities. During the COVID-19 pandemic, she began her YouTube channel for interpreters, producing educational content for interpreters, and began teaching medical interpretation with Americans Against Language Barriers (AALB).

Gustavo Negrete, AALB Trainer

Gustavo R. Negrete received his training at California State University in Fullerton, Extended Education Program in Court Interpreting. In 2014, he achieved national certification through the National Board of Certification for Medical Interpreters earning the title of Certified Medical Interpreter – Spanish and is also a Certified HIPAA Privacy Expert (CHPE). Mr. Negrete is the current Chair of the NBCMI and had previously served as the Secretary of the National Board. He is President and CEO of a micro interpreting and translation company; fulfilling language access needs in medical, legal, community, and education, as well as consulting and is the new managing director of TransInterpreting. Mr. Negrete has over twenty (20) year of experience in health care having served in several clinical roles and departments prior to becoming an interpreter. He is a staunch advocate for language access, LEP rights and the interpreting profession as an active participant in organizations who lobby and or promote these causes.

Olga Bogatova, AALB Trainer

Olga Bogatova started her career in Russia and holds a Master's Degree in Biology. She is a CoreCHI- and NBCMI-certified Russian medical interpreter. Now, as a medical interpreter at Stanford Health Care, she focuses on working with older adults and other vulnerable populations. Along with that, she finds peace serving the language needs of the Russian-speaking asylum seekers and refugees flown to California.

Jorge U. Ungo, CCHI Language Access Advocate

For over two decades, Jorge U. Ungo supported healthcare organizations in their efforts to deliver compassionate, culturally competent, patient-centered care to their diverse patient population. During this time he served as a board member on the National Council on Interpreting in Health Care (NCIHC), President of the Texas Association of Healthcare Interpreters and Translators (TAHIT) and a CCHI Commissioner. In 2015, Jorge was recognized by TAHIT as the Texas Star in Language Access and in 2019, he was recognized by NCIHC as a Language Access Champion. Born in El Salvador and raised in a bilingual, bicultural home in Texas, Jorge is passionate about uplifting marginalized communities and being a vocal ally for the underserved.

Veronica Guemez, Certified Medical Interpreter

Veronica Guemez, MA, CHI-Spanish, is a nationally certified medical interpreter from the Certification Commission for Healthcare Interpreters (CCHI) with over 20 years of experience. She has worked as an OPI, VRI, staff in-person interpreter, as well as an independent contractor. In 2016 she attained a certification in Translation Studies and in 2017 a master’s degree in Global Affairs with a concentration in Translation Studies. In addition to working extensively as an interpreter in the medical field, she has worked as a Consistency Reviewer for translations at the headquarters of State Farm and as a Translation Coordinator at Advocate Aurora Healthcare. From 2019 to 2020, she was the Vice-President of Programs for CHICATA, bringing experts to present and inform members of CHICATA as well as organize the Interpreters and Translators Institute Workshops held each year. Currently she is transitioning into the legal field and pursuing the State Certification for judicial interpreters. Her plans for the future include getting certified, working for the 19th Judicial Circuit Court in Illinois, and the DOJ.

Kavita D'Souza, Apna Ghar Community Engagement Manager

Kavita is the Programs Manager at Apna Ghar (a Hindi/Urdu phrase meaning “Our Home.”) Apna Ghar was founded in 1989 in Chicago to end gender-based violence. As a human rights organization Apna Ghar uses an evidence-based model to address micro and macro level conditions that create unique barriers that our immigrant survivors face. Since 1990, Apna Ghar has reached more than 100,000 survivors and community members across the region. Kavita has more than 15 years of experience in India working with non- government and non-profit organizations, community mental health agencies, prevention of sexual harassment at the workplace and health care.

The Purpose of the Conference

The AALB Society of Professional Interpreters is proud to present its inaugural conference, aimed at uniting a diverse group of stakeholders to empower our members and other language professionals. This conference provides an opportunity for networking, learning, and discussing the future of medical interpretation. As a rapidly evolving field, it is essential for medical interpreters to prioritize the needs of limited-English patients and adapt to the changing landscape.

What to Expect

Gain Continuing Education Units & Renew Certification

The conference offers the opportunity to earn continuing education units (CEUs), which can help maintain certification in medical interpretation. CEUs will be available for interpreters certified by CCHI and NBCMI. By attending the conference, interpreters and translators can stay up-to-date with the latest developments in the field and maintain their certification status.

Network With Professionals From Around the World

The conference provides a unique opportunity to connect with other professionals in the international field of medical interpretation. By networking with individuals from diverse backgrounds and experiences, attendees can gain new insights and perspectives that can help them advance in their careers and improve the quality of care they provide to patients.

Enhance & Expand Your Knowledge

The conference offers a range of educational opportunities designed to help attendees enhance and expand their knowledge of medical interpretation. From keynotes to panel discussions and debates, attendees will have the opportunity to learn about the latest trends, research, and best practices in the field.

Engage in Conversation & Shape the Future of the Profession

The conference offers a range of interactive activities, including panel discussions, debates, surveys, and breakout sessions, which provide a platform for attendees to share their perspectives, experiences, and ideas. By participating in these activities, attendees can help shape the future of the medical interpretation profession through 2033 and beyond.

Activities & Event
General Overview - The Exact Schedule Will Be Subject to Change
All Speaker Events Are Livestreamed & Recorded for Virtual Attendees
Times are listed in Central Time - Please convert to your time zone if attending virtually.

Click Here to View Itinerary (PDF)

Continuing Education Workshops & Lectures

The conference offers a range of continuing education workshops and lectures from world-renowned experts, providing attendees with the opportunity to enhance and expand their knowledge in the field of medical interpretation. These workshops and lectures cover a diverse range of topics related to future of medical interpretation, including best practices, industry trends, and emerging technologies, among others. By attending these sessions, interpreters and translators can gain new skills, knowledge, and insights that can help them stay ahead of the curve in this rapidly evolving field. Additionally, attendees can connect with experts in the field, learn from their experiences, and build relationships that can help them advance their careers. CEU Units will be offered for interpreters certified by the Certification Commission for Healthcare Interpreters and the National Board of Certification for Medical Interpreters.

Detailed Information

Conference Location & Venue
The location for the conference is the Lakeshore Campus of Loyola University, situated in the stunning city of Chicago, Illinois. This private university campus is nestled right on the shores of Lake Michigan and is conveniently located less than 30 minutes away from O'Hare International Airport. During your free time, you can explore the beautiful campus and take a leisurely stroll along the picturesque lake.
Lodging & Hotel
It is recommended that all conference attendees stay at the Hampton Inn, which is conveniently located just a 10-minute walk or 2-minute drive from the conference venue. Many attendees also choose to stay at local AirBnBs.
Conference CEUs
There will be at least 4 hours of continuing education units provide attendees to help recertify interpreters and translators certified by the Certification Commission for Interpreters in Healthcare and the National Board of Certification for Medical Interpreters.
Dress Code
This will be a formal gathering of professionals, therefore we recommend dressing in business casual clothing. On the second day of the conference, we ask that everyone wear their traditional cultural clothing, whatever that may mean to you.
Conference Fees
Attend In-Person: $185
Attend Virtually: $65

Your ticket includes attendance for both days, continuing education units, and food/beverages.

Refund policy: If you have a change of plans, we offer refunds 10 days before the start of the event.
Food & Dining
At the conference, we will offer free vegan and vegetarian meals and snacks, with the aim of keeping you energized and nourished throughout the event. We recommend bringing extra snacks in case you need an additional boost of energy during the day. If you have any dietary restrictions or allergies, please inform us, as well catering team during the conference, so that we can accommodate your needs.