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Robert Joe Lee to Discuss State Efforts to Provide Equal Rights in Court for Non-English Speakers in Lecture March 7 at MCCC


West Windsor, N.J. – Robert Joe Lee, former manager of the New Jersey Judiciary’s Language Access Program, will give a lecture at Mercer County Community College at noon on Thursday, March 7, in the Communications Building, room 109. 

The discussion, “Ensuring Access to the Courts for Non-English Speakers,” is part of the college’s Spring Distinguished Lecture Series and is held at the West Windsor campus, 1200 Old Trenton Road.  The event is free and open to the public.

Lee worked for the New Jersey Judiciary for 30 years, until his retirement in 2008.  Starting out as a research associate in the Probation Division, Lee staffed the Supreme Court Task Force on Interpreter and Translation Services.  He went on to manage the state’s program to ensure equal access to the courts for non-English speakers, from its inception in 1985. In his lecture, Lee will describe these efforts and discuss career opportunities for bilingual professionals in the court system.

A fluent Spanish speaker, Lee has authored numerous publications on court interpretation and coordinated the development of court interpreter tests in numerous languages.  He helped establish the Consortium for State Court Interpreter Certification and led the New Jersey initiative to become a charter member.

In his retirement Lee assists the Consortium’s testing program and provides a variety of consulting services to state and federal judiciaries.

Robert Joe Lee

Among the recognitions he has received over the years is a Commendation of Excellence in Bilingual Legal Interpreting in 2001 from the South Carolina Commission on Higher Education.

For more information on MCCC’s Distinguished Lecture Series, call 609-570-3324 or visit the website.

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