Grace Catania

Grace Catania was born and raised in Poland. In 1980 she arrived in the United States. Not knowing a word of English, she attended classes at Wright College in Chicago and then continued her education at Harper College. During this period Grace became a citizen and raised 3 children. In 1994, she began working as an independent contractor for the Circuit Court of Cook County as a Polish language judicial interpreter. As a qualified judicial interpreter, Grace’s skills were in demand and she started working exclusively for Cook County. She became a full time employee of Cook County, joining a select group of qualified interpreters recognized by and employed by the Circuit Court of Cook County. A collective bargaining unit was established and Grace became active as a union steward. She is now in her second term as unit chairperson. Grace helped negotiate the current labor contract which expires in November 2012. She is currently involved in the new round of contract negotiations. Her immediate goal is to obtain recognition of the credentials of interpreters working in Cook County who have attained certification

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