IOWA COURT REPORTERS ASSOCIATION

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2022 ICRA Annual Seminar

  • Wednesday, June 22, 2022
  • 12:00 PM
  • Friday, June 24, 2022
  • 12:00 PM
  • Hilton Garden Inn, West Des Moines

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IOWA COURT REPORTERS ASSOCIATION 

Annual Convention  

June 22 – 24, 2022 

Jordan Creek Crossing Event Center 

Hilton Garden Inn 

205 S 64th Street

West Des Moines, Iowa  

1.35 CEUs

Block of Rooms has been reserved with rates at $119/night for standard room or $139/night for a suite.  Call 515-223-0571 or click here to make your reservation.  **Please note the link will automatically make your reservation for Tuesday night-Thursday night.  If you do not need a room Tuesday night, you will need to change the check-in date.**

Breakfast will be provided on Thursday and Friday.  Lunch will be provided on Thursday.

Please call 773-777-1474 in order to schedule your machine cleaning with Worth Business Equipment


SCHEDULE of EVENTS

Wednesday, June 22, 2022 

.4 CEUs

Session  Number 

Title of Session 

Time 

CEUs 

Instructor/Presenter

  Registration
 12:00 pm to 1:00 pm
   

Court Reporting in Iowa 

1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. 

.1 

Bob Gast, State Court Administrator

**Chief Justice Christensen will be stopping by between the first two speakers for a short meet and greet**

2

Professional Regulation in  Iowa 

2:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. 

.15

Tre Cretilli, Executive Director, Office of  Professional Regulation


Break 

3:30 p.m. to 3:45 p.m 

x


Greatest Career on Earth 

3:45 p.m. to 5:15 p.m. 

.15 

Debbie Dibble, NCRA President


Thursday, June 23, 2022 

.65 CEUs 

Session  Number 

Title of Session 

Time 

CEUs 

Instructor/Presenter

   Registration  8:30 a.m. to 9:00 a.m.
   

Judy Justice 

9:00 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. 

.15 

Whitney Kumar


Break 

10:30 a.m. to 10:45 a.m. 

x


5

NCRA Update/Lobbyist  Update 

10:45 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. 

.1 

Debbie Dibble 

Kellie Paschke


Business meeting, awards, installation of officers 

11:45 p.m. to 1:00 p.m. 

x



Break 

1:00 p.m. to 1:15 p.m. 

x


Innocence Project 

1:15 p.m. to 2:15 p.m. 

.1

Erica Nichols Cook Director, ISPD Wrongful Convictions Divison


Break 

2:15 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. 

x


7

Views from an Experienced  Public Defender 

2:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. 

.1 

Aaron Hawbaker, Chief Public Defender


Break 

3:30 p.m. to 3:45 p.m. 

x


8

From Meth to Murder: 

Becoming Iowa’s First Death Row Inmate in 50 Years

3:45 p.m. to 5:45 p.m. 

.2 

Bill Basler, Retired DCI Special  Agent

6-7 pm. Happy Hour at the Crossing Lounge (Hilton Garden Inn)

Friday, June 24, 2022 

.3 CEUs

Session  Number 

Title of Session 

Time 

CEUs 

Instructor/Presenter

Managing Mental Wellness 

8:45 a.m. to 9:45 a.m. 

.1 

Judge Hoover-Grinde


Break 

9:45 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. 

x


10 

Iowa Cold Case: 

State v. Jerry Lynn Burns 

10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. 

.2

Nicholas Maybanks, 

Linn County Attorney,

and Investigator Matt Denlinger

********************************************************************

SPEAKER INFORMATION 

Wednesday, June 22, 2022 

Session #1- 1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. 

Court Reporting in Iowa 

Bob Gast 

State Court Administrator 

Bob was born in Fort Dodge, Iowa, and graduated from Stuart-Menlo High School. He served in the Army from 1992 to 1997, assigned to 1st Personnel Command in Schwetzingen, Germany from 1992 to 1995. Bob completed his bachelor’s degree in Political Science while in Germany from the University of Maryland, University College (now known as University of Maryland Global Campus). He then served in the 4th Personnel Services Battalion at Fort Carson, Colorado from 1995 to 1997. Bob worked in private industry from 1997 to early 2005. He worked for the State of Iowa Department of Revenue six months of 2005 before joining the Judicial Branch. Within the Judicial Branch, he served as the Finance and Personnel Manager for the 4th District of Iowa from 2005 to 2009. He served as the Deputy Court Administrator of the 4th District of Nebraska from 2010 to 2019. He was then hired as the District Court Administrator of the 4th District of Iowa in April of 2019, and in October of 2021, Bob was selected as the State Court Administrator in Iowa. 

Bob will speak to us about the important role of court reporters in the Judicial Branch moving forward. He will discuss strategic planning for how court administration can utilize the court reporting resources we have, in light of the growing shortage of reporters. He will discuss ways we can work together for recruitment of new reporters, and how to manage the workload with the resources we have currently. 

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Session #2- 2:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. 

Professional Regulation in Iowa 

Tre Critelli 

Executive Director, Office of Professional Regulation 

Tré Critelli is the executive director of the Iowa Supreme Court’s Office of Professional Regulation, which consists of eight boards and commissions that regulate, educate, and discipline Iowa’s lawyer and certified shorthand reporters. Tré serves as the administrator for the Board of Examiners of Shorthand Reporters, which oversees the certification of Iowa’s shorthand reporters, the annual reporting, and the handing of disciplinary complaints. 

Prior to his appointment as executive director in December of 2016, Tré served as an assistant director with the Office of Professional Regulation, was the staff lawyer for the Iowa Judicial Branch’s Education Division, and served as an Assistant Ethics Counsel for the Iowa Supreme Court’s Attorney Disciplinary Board. Tré had previously served as a member of the Attorney Disciplinary Board and as the board chair. 

Tré received his undergraduate degree in 1988 from Loras College in Dubuque, Iowa, and his Doctorate of Jurisprudence from Drake University in Des Moines in 1995. He was called to the Bar of England and Wales in 2002, and is one of only a handful of practicing attorneys from the United States who are also qualified barristers in England and Wales. Tré is a trained National Institute of Trial Advocacy faculty member and has served as an adjunct professor for both Drake University’s College of Business and Public Administration and its College of Law. 

During his presentation Tré will be explaining how the reporter disciplinary process works, reviewing the statistical trends in Iowa’s certified shorthand reporters, and discussing the steps necessary to recruit new students and retain reporters. 

****************************** 

Session #3- 3:45 p.m. to 5:15 p.m. 

Greatest Career on Earth 

Debbie Dibble 

NCRA President 

Debra A. Dibble, a 28-year veteran in the court and deposition arena, from Woodland, Utah, has worked as a deposition reporter since 1989, in Utah, Wyoming, and Tennessee. She holds all of the NCRA professional reporter certifications, as well as passing the National Speed Competition and the National Realtime Competition and holds the Realtime Systems Administrator Certification.  

At the national level, Dibble has served as an NCRA Chief Examiner and was involved in the development ofNCRA's TRAIN (Taking Realtime Awareness and Innovation Nationwide) program. She served as a delegate to the National Committee of State Associations from 2008 to 2012.

In 2010, the Utah Court Reporters Association (UCRA) honored her with its Distinguished Service Award.  Dibble has also served in numerous volunteer positions at the state level including as a director for the Western District of Tennessee and is a past director and president of the UCRA. 

Greatest Career on Earth 

Has all the late-night proofreading, the early morning doctor depos, the speeding-bullet expert witnesses, the demanding and unappreciative prosecutors dulled your memory of all that this profession has to offer? Maybe it’s time to reminisce. Take a walk down memory lane with Cheerleader of Court Reporting Debbie Dibble, as she helps us remember all that this profession has given us and ponder all that it still has to give. Improve yourself, acquire some new certifications, become realtime proficient, check out CART and Broadcasting opportunities. Let’s stop and smell the roses, the daffodils, the gardenias, and then blast into the bouquets ahead.

 

******************************

Thursday, June 23, 2022 

Session #4: 9:00 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. 

Judy Justice 

Whitney Kumar 

Whitney Kumar is the Court Stenographer for Judy Justice, the landmark courtroom program featuring Judge Judy Sheindlin from IMDb TV, Amazon’s free streaming service. Whitney is a graduate of South Coast College and has been a deposition and official reporter in California since 2006. Whitney boasts a highly diverse skill set as a certified shorthand reporter due to her tenure as an official reporter within the Los Angeles Superior Court where she reported many high-profile cases. With extensive experience reporting cases from deposition through the courtroom, Whitney has garnered a deep knowledge of the entire life cycle of civil cases in California. While at the Los Angeles Superior Court, she led the official record for high-profiles cases such as Britney Spears v. Kevin Federline, Mel Gibson v. Oksana Grigorieva, and the Los Angeles Dodger owners Frank McCourt v. Jamie McCourt. Drawing on her love of reporting and her expertise within the courtroom, Whitney founded KW Court Reporting with her twin sister Kamryn in 2013.  

Hollywood and the court reporting world collide! Everyone’s favorite daytime judge, Judge Judy, made sure to have a certified stenographer at her side for her new show Judy Justice. The perfect reporter for the job was Whitney Kumar. She is a California CSR who owns KW Court Reporting with her twin sister Kamryn. Come learn about her unique experience and tips on evolving your court reporting career. 

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Session #5- 10:45 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. 

Lobbyist Update 

Kellie L. Paschke 

Skinner & Paschke, P.L.L.C. 

Attorneys & Lobbyists for ICRA 

Kellie received her B.A. from Cornell College in 1997, majoring in political science and J.D. from Drake University Law School in 2000, with a focus on corporate/business law. She was admitted to practice law in September 2000. 

Kellie began working in the legislature as a legislative intern in 1999. Upon graduation, she spent five (5) years working inside the Capitol as a research analyst for the Iowa House Republican Caucus staff. Kellie was responsible for legal research and analysis of legislation for several areas including Judiciary, Public Safety, Justice System Appropriations, and Judicial Branch budget. 

In 2005, Kellie joined the Iowa Association of Business and Industry as Vice President, Government Relations. In this role, she served as a primary lobbyist for the association on all matters related to business, environmental, and labor law. Kellie joined the law firm of Skinner, Nielsen, & McCollom, PLC in 2008. 

In 2010, Troy and Kellie formed the firm Skinner & Paschke, PLLC. During the legislative session they work full-time at the Statehouse, and in the interim, they continue this service by providing regulatory and policy development assistance. Troy and Kellie also maintain an active law practice which includes a focus on personal injury, workers’ compensation, employment law, and real estate matters. 

Kellie will give us an update on legislative issues affecting court reporters.  Specifically, she will talk about the Fair Labor Standards Act issue currently affecting official reporters in Iowa and how the association plans to address it in the next legislative session.  

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Session #6- 1:15 p.m. to 2:15 p.m. 

Innocence Project 

Erica Nichols Cook 

Director, Wrongful Conviction Division at Iowa State Public Defender 

Erica Nichols Cook joined the Wrongful Conviction Division of the Iowa State Public Defender in December 2016. In January 2020, Erica began the inaugural Wrongful Convictions Clinic at Drake Law School and serves as a Clinician in Residence. Prior to coming to Des Moines, Iowa, she was an assistant appellate defender in Springfield, Illinois. She also served as an adjunct Professor of Law at Southern Illinois University teaching about wrongful convictions and supervising the externship program with the Illinois Innocence Project. Erica was previously a staff attorney with the Illinois Innocence Project where she investigated and litigated non-DNA cases and supervised both undergraduate and law students. 

Prior to her time with the Illinois Innocence Project, Erica was an Assistant Cook County Public Defender in Chicago.  

She earned her Juris Doctorate Degree from Drake Law School, where she was a Public Service Scholar and Ferguson Gold Award recipient. She received her Bachelor’s in Arts Degree from the University of Illinois Springfield.  

Erica will talk to us about post-conviction investigations in actual innocence cases as well as discuss evolving science and forensics, misconduct, and how important court reporters and our transcripts are to the process. She will discuss how her office manages a case that is very old and handling large files of information, including transcripts, whether paper or electronic. Her investigator, Lauren Wheeler, will be attending and contributing to the discussion as well. 

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Session #7- 2:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. 

Views from an Experienced Public Defender 

Aaron Hawbaker 

Aaron Hawbaker is the Chief Public Defender in the Waterloo Adult Public Defender’s Office. He attended the University of Northern Iowa where he received a BA in Political Science/Communications.  Aaron graduated in 1994 from University of Iowa College of Law. He has worked for the State of Iowa Public Defender’s Office since 2004.  

Aaron Hawbaker will be providing an attorney’s perspective on what is important when making a record; defense strategies, including how cases are assessed when deciding whether or not they should go to trial; how defense counsel personally cope with emotionally-charged cases; and the concept of “defending the indefensible.”  

Aaron Hawbaker will cover a broad range of topics in his presentation including the importance of court  reporters and the accuracy of the record in the eyes of counsel; how the roles of court reporters and  attorneys overlap; how the courtroom/trial procedure and expectations have evolved over his time as a  public defender; how he prepares for trials, namely, the more difficult and emotionally-charged trials;  how he advocates and maintains professionalism working for individuals who are alleged to have done  unthinkable acts; his personal experience and observations of vicarious trauma and methods he has  utilized to promote positive mental health; as well as the management duties involved in his role as the  Chief Public Defender.  

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Session #8- 3:45 p.m. to 5:45 p.m. 

From Meth to Murder: The Investigation and Trial of Dustin Honken and Angela Johnson. Retired Special Agent Bill Basler  

Dustin Honken, 52, a nerd turned drug kingpin became the only Iowan since 1963 to have the death sentence an Iowa jury imposed seen through on Friday, July 17, 2020. He was a community college drop-out who created his meth empire in the early 1990s. 

His victims included: Terry DeGeus, age 32, and Greg Nicholson, age 34, both government informants and Lori Duncan, the 31-year-old mother of two girls who were also victims, Amber, age 6, and Kandace, age 10. 

Four of the five victims in this case "disappeared" during the summer of 1993. The Mason City Police Department handled the case as missing persons, and no DCI assistance was requested. The fifth victim disappeared late that fall in Hancock County. The Hancock County Sheriff requested DCI’s help, and their investigation began. 

Honken was an immediate suspect, but due to DCI’s late request to join the case, a lack of bodies, and the lack of a crime scene, the investigation struggled. 

Fast-forward to 1996. Four agencies had legitimate open investigations regarding Honken: Mason City Police Department, Hancock Sheriff, DEA, State Narcotics, and the DCI. It was decided at that time that all of the investigations would be merged into one, with the DCI taking control. Bill Basler was appointed as the lead investigator. 

The five bodies were discovered during the fall of 2000. Much of Bill’s presentation will detail the investigative process between 1996 and the discovery of the bodies, including the extensive search for potential witnesses, and the exhumation of the bodies from where they had been buried. 

Bill will also talk about the two murder trials in federal court, where the prosecution was faced with proceeding with virtually no physical evidence, but a lot of circumstantial evidence. 

Forensics will be discussed, including firearms, metallurgy, handwriting analysis, & forensic anthropology. 

The presentation will be graphic and potentially upsetting for some. It's hard to see and talk about two little girls being murdered. 

Bill Basler is a US Navy veteran who graduated from UNI with a BA in business. He was employed by the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation for 31 years as a Special Agent and Special Agent in Charge. After his retirement, he was the Criminal Justice Program Director at North Iowa Area Community College in Mason City. 

Retired Special Agent Basler will go over the details of these two cases and will discuss the history of the cases leading up to his involvement in investigating the cases. He will talk about the drug world and the slang they use. He will also talk to us about the differences in the federal and state courtroom procedures, how the prosecution prepared him to testify at trial and certain legal terminology. Retired 

Special Agent Basler will also talk about the forensic evidence they collected, including the use of firearms, metallurgy, handwriting analysis, and forensic anthropology. He will present to us several slides while taking us through from the moment he got involved in this case, through both trials, and finally the conclusion of the cases, which ended with one of the defendants being executed by lethal injection and the other one serving a lifetime prison sentence in federal prison. 

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Friday, June 24, 2022 

Session #9- 8:45 a.m. to 9:45 a.m. 

Managing Mental Wellness 

Judge Fae Hoover-Grinde 

Judge Hoover-Grinde of Cedar Rapids was appointed to the bench as an associate judge on December 9, 2003. In 2007 she was appointed to the district court bench. She was born in St. Ansgar, Iowa, and raised in Marion, Iowa. She received her undergraduate degree from Cornell College in 1987 and her law degree from the University of Iowa in 1990. Judge Hoover-Grinde previously served as a public defender in Cedar Rapids and a Legal Service Corp. staff attorney. She is a member of the Linn County Bar Association and the National Association of Women Judges.  

Judge Hoover-Grinde will talk to us about mindfulness, wellness, and secondary trauma stress in our job. She will speak about how court reporters need to maintain a level of professionalism even during very difficult court proceedings. She will speak on mental health/substance abuse issues, how we can manage those, and also resources available within our profession if we aren’t able to work through those on our own.  

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Session #10- 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. 

Iowa Cold Case: State v. Jerry Lynn Burns 

Linn County Attorney Nicholas Maybanks and Investigator Matt Denlinger  

On December 19, 1979, 18-year-old high school student Michelle Martinko, who was found stabbed to death in her family's car in the parking lot of a local mall in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. The murder was closely followed within her community, and the police received more than 200 tips in the weeks following her killing. However, the case gradually grew cold as the investigation stretched on. In 2006, a cold case  

investigator discovered unidentified blood, presumably belonging to the killer, while reviewing case files. In 2015, Investigator Matt Denlinger took over the case. We will hear about the efforts taken in the investigation, which eventually lead to the arrest of Jerry Lee Burns. On February 24, 2020, Burns was found guilty of Murder in the First Degree, and on August 7, 2020, he was sentenced to life in prison without parole. 

Nicholas Maybanks, Linn County Attorney, and Investigator Matt Denlinger  

Nick graduated magna cum laude from Loras College with a BA in psychology and a minor in criminal justice and then attended Drake Law School. He has been the First Assistant Linn County Attorney since 2010 and prior to that was an assistant in the office from the date he was hired in September of 2000.  In September 2013, he received the Dr. Kathleen Opdebeeck Award for Professional Excellence for Outstanding Achievement and Exemplary Service in the Protection of Iowa's Children. In September 2015, he received the Iowa County Attorney's Association Staff Attorney Award of Merit. He serves on the Iowa County Attorney’s Association Legislative Committee and has been a featured speaker at many conferences around the State of Iowa through his career. 

Nick served as lead counsel in the State v. Jerry Lynn Burns case, where the defendant was convicted and sentenced to life in prison for the 1979 death of 18-year-old Michelle Martinko in the parking lot of the Cedar Rapids shopping mall.  

Nick and Matt will talk about investigative techniques used to collect DNA samples and the use of advances in DNA technology to crack this cold case. Nick will then tie in how he successfully used that DNA evidence in the courtroom to prosecute the defendant to conviction for the decades-old crime. He will also talk about trial management issues regarding media in the courtroom for this high-profile case, which was recently featured on Dateline.


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"ICRA" is a 501(c)6 non-profit organization. 703 Elm Court, Dallas Center, IA 50063

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