Samantha Terzis CI/CT
Samantha began her love for Sign Language at a camp she attended around 1980. There among the many available classes was Signed Music. She signed her first song, and was immediately hooked. From there, apparently a career was born, and it all started at an elementary school camp in the Big Bear Mountains of California.
After Sign Language and Drama classes throughout her High School years, she was blessed to attend Westmont College in Santa Barbara, CA, and there pursue a degree in Art/Theatre. With an ongoing passion for Signing she simultaneously enrolled in a formal Interpreting degree program from Palomar College in San Marcos, CA. Samantha became a ranked Theatrical Lighting Designer, and that love spurred her integration of Performance and Interpreting.
Her first concert interpreting assignment was in 1990 and it only took one concert to be permanently hooked on the integration of Sign and music. Samantha has now been interpreting for 30 years, and working in the Performance Interpreting setting for 29. In the midst of her career, she moved to Nashville to continue her Performance Interpreting pursuits and in 1999, she, along with several local Deaf consumers, began Gate Communications, with the collective goal of advancing Deaf Accessibility, interpreting education, Deaf Community interactions, and ministerial outreach. Over her 2 1/2 + decades of interpreting, Samantha has interpreted concerts from coast to coast, and provided services alongside Presidents, Country/Christian/Pop Artists, and internationally known speakers. She has taught private ASL/Interpreting classes for over 20 years and spent 10 years as a collegiate instructor in an ITP/IPP. She also has run Deaf Ministries in churches and in private organizations, and has seen the challenges and the drama which can filter into religious environments.
Samantha has a deep love for foreign Sign Languages. She has experience signing in 5 foreign sign languages and interpreting in 2. She regularly interacts with foreign Deaf consumers living and traveling within the U.S. and outside our borders. Samantha has been working with the Mexican Deaf Community for 19 years. Samantha is the primary ASL/Interpreting instructor in Gate's ITP, and guides Gate's education department as she travels the country presenting at workshops. Her primary position is to serve as the Executive Director of Gate Communications, located in the Nashville area... Music City U.S.A.
A MESSAGE FROM SAM:
In an interesting twist of irony I hate pictures of myself (yet here we are needing pictures of little moi) but I love people!! I have given up my demand for no cameras pointed in my direction to allow for a few memories of the faces I love.
The interpreting world is so full of bitterness and division. That saddens me. I want to be a light in a dark interpreting world. I want to be a person where students and baby interpreters feel supported by a Certified Interpreter. I want to be a person where other Certified Terps can come to find a safe home in the arms of a friend. Some of the most beautiful moments of my teaching career have been when a weeping interpreter hugs me and tells me I have changed their life, saved their career, given them hope, or become a special mentor in their life. I have been blessed to do a job I love, but more importantly I have been blessed to develop so many amazing relationships with people I can now call family.
I hope I get a chance to meet you! I have a hug waiting... (smile) and we can even take a selfie.