After transferring in my junior year from Connecticut, I graduated from the University of Puerto with a B.A. in French and a Master’s Degree in English Literature and another in Translation. But my first love has always been interpretation; so I packed up and enrolled in the Conference Interpretation Graduate Program at the Monterey Institute of International Studies (MIIS) in Monterey, California.
Upon graduation with a degree in conference interpretation (French, Spanish and English), I went to Morocco to brush up on my French before venturing off to Belgium and Paris. When I returned to Puerto Rico, Myrsa Landrón and Carmen Díaz, the founders of Atabex asked me to join as the interpreter to complement their translation skills.
A year later I was invited to join the staff of the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA), the UN specialized agency for agriculture, as their in-house interpreter. My one-year contract soon turned into eight years, during which I coordinated all of the ministerial meetings, setting up four-language booths as well as staffing for all technical meetings.
In 1996, I left IICA to go to Brazil and improve my Portuguese. From there I moved to Miami, where I soon joined the staff of the Free Trade Agreement of the Americas (FTAA). The plan was to draft a trade agreement for all of North, South and Central America as well as the Caribbean. The FTAA remained in Miami for 2 years and then moved on to Panama, where I served as the head interpreter, coordinating 12 interpreters to cover all meetings. Two years later, the FTAA moved to Puebla, Mexico where, after four years, the negotiations came to a standstill. Little by little, we all returned to our countries of origin and I moved to California, where I now work as a freelance translator (still through Atabex) and a certified federal and state interpreter for superior and federal court cases, as well as for depositions.
My favorite quote
– I complained because I had no shoe until I met a man who had no feet
– I bet you never knew that the biggest pyramids are not in Egypt but in Cholula, Mexico
In Barbara’s own words
I have lived around the world and travelled through Latin America. A little known fact about me is that I met my wonderful husband on the Internet.
Founding Atabex translations and being able to help our customers for the past 30 years has been the joy of my life!
At Arteaga & Arteaga, we are grateful to Atabex Translations for having the opportunity to work with them as their client over many years. We appreciate their excellent quality and prompt service, as well as their commitment to the company and our clients. We are more than satisfied with their work and expect this to be the case for many years to come.
The promptness and accuracy of their work speaks to the efficiency and excellence they apply in producing reliable work. Their excellent service and customer relations are deserving of our trust.