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Director of Language Access Services (SCA 13162-001)

Date Posted
July 21, 2021
Full Time

Job Details


Wednesday, July 21, 2021

Position Title

Director of Language Access Services


State Court Administration
1111 E Court Ave
Des Moines, IA 50319


Pay Grade 33, $64,084.80 - $98,779.20 Annually
Eligible for State of Iowa benefits

Position Summary

Under the direction of the Deputy State Court Administrator, the Director of Language Access Services is responsible for the statewide coordination of language access services throughout the Iowa courts. Administrative responsibilities include: staffing the Supreme Court’s Language Access in the Courts Advisory Committee, managing the court interpreter training and testing program, assisting district language access coordinators in locating interpreters of uncommon languages in Iowa, considering and approving requests for exceptions to the standard fees set forth in the Administrative Directive on Court Interpreter and Translator Compensation, recruiting qualified court interpreters. The employee will work with the Director of Judicial Branch Education to provide training for judicial branch staff and judicial officers on language access issues, will oversee the translation of court forms and related instructions into other languages, and will oversee compliance with the requirements of the statewide Language Access Plan.


Oversees the state courts’ language access services, including the management of the court interpreter recruitment, training, testing, certification, and the courts’ roster of court interpreters.

Implements and oversees statewide and policies and procedures affecting qualifications, appointment, and compensation of interpreters, professional standards for interpreters, and interpretation delivery models.

Works with judges and court employees to assist with the management of court interpreters.

Works closely with language access coordinators in each judicial district to assess the needs for language access services and to meet those needs effectively and efficiently.

Identifies best practices and recommends policies for serving persons with limited English proficiency (LEP).

Maintains, monitors, and updates, as needed, the statewide Language Access Plan for the Iowa Courts.

Ensures that laws and policies related to interpreters are implemented and followed statewide.

Maintains the judicial branch’s roster of freelance court interpreters. 

Serves as a member on the Iowa Supreme Court’s Language Access in the Courts Advisory Committee; represents the Iowa courts on state and national committees, workgroups, and task forces related to language access and interpreter services.

Initiates, promotes, and maintains protocols for collecting and reporting statistical data and other information regarding the use of and need for language services for limited English proficient persons in the courts.

Evaluates and recommends changes to policies, procedures, court rules and laws governing interpreting services for the Iowa courts; works to identify trends and emerging policy issues, develops goals, performance measures, and outcomes, and works to improve the delivery of court policies and programs.

Develops policies pertaining to, and oversees initiatives regarding, the translation of statewide court forms and instructions.

Works with external nonprofit and governmental entities to identify and resolve concerns and barriers to effective language access to the Iowa courts. 

Researches and applies for applicable grants for resolution of language access issues and continuing education opportunities for interpreters, judges, and court staff.

Serves as the subject matter expert for interpreter training programs, judicial and non-judicial employee education programs, and makes formal and informal presentations on language access services.

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:
Knowledge of technologies that facilitate provision of language access services.
Knowledge and understanding of the Code of Professional Conduct for Court Interpreters and Translators (Chapter 48 of the Iowa Court Rules).
Knowledge of the Iowa court system.
Ability to interpret completely and accurately, both simultaneously and consecutively, in a highly visible and public setting involving participants who use legal and technical terms.
Skill in active listening.
Skill in working with all individuals in a respectful and professional manner.
Ability to communicate effectively verbally and in writing in English and Spanish.
Ability to work effectively with diverse groups of people and individuals.
Ability to work independently with minimal direction.


(1)  An applicant must meet the requirements of (a) through (c): to qualify for section 1.

a.  Have a bachelor’s degree from an accredited four-year college or university in public administration, social sciences, criminal justice, foreign languages, court management, or other related area of study.

b.  Have at least five years of experience providing training programs on language access issues for interpreters and (or) judges, where 18 hours of graduate-level college credits in one of the fields indicated in 1(a) or a related field can substitute for one year of experience and a master’s degree can substitute for three years of experience.

c.  Have a valid driver’s license and ability to travel within the state.

(2)  It is strongly preferred, but not required, that an applicant has passed the Spanish/English court interpreter certification exams offered by the federal courts or a state court that offers the certification exams developed by the National Center for State Courts, and has five years of experience interpreting in court.

(3)  It is preferred, but not required, that an applicant has experience managing court interpreters.

Final candidates must be able to pass a criminal background check.

The Iowa Judicial Branch is an E-Verify employer.

Contact Information

How to Apply

Cover letter, resume, and Iowa Judicial Branch Application for Employment may be emailed to

Posting Close Date

All application materials must be received by Friday, August 20, 2021.



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