My Story

Looking at my Resume – I began interpreting in the early mid-seventies while celebrating RID’s “25 Years Silver Linings” – We celebrated the great “firsts” in the field. Lou Fant and Charlotte Shaker-Bank; Sharon Newmann-Solow; Carol Patrie; Betty Colonomos were my favorites! I was in the “second-wave” as Anna Witter-Merithew declared at our two-week legal training in the early 90’s. I grew up with a Deaf Cousin, Billy Downing (Fort Worth, Texas). Our Merritt cousin married into a Deaf family, and we were immersed in a NEW awareness of communication and culture. I learned to enjoy the richness of this cultural experience! I drank in this educational moment!

Professionally, El Camino College is where my early years began first as a student of ASL,  and the early friendship with Sylvia Q., Jenny, and Margaret, forever changing my understanding of BFF. Relationships are critical, and sweet loyalty changes even the hardest of shells – the girls taught me volumes.,

In the late 80’s, I left freelance interpreting and started my new career at El Camino College in Learning Affirmation and Cognitive Skill Development. Here I learned the YES, YOU CAN curriculum and traveled to South Afiria and shared these lessons at the Efata School for the Deaf in the early 1990’s.

El Camino is also where I started my interpreter training and skills enhancement in 1975, throughout the 80’s, and internationally in the 1990’s. I know!!! I count myself blessed! I continued to research cognitive development and specialized learning programs as I was actively learning the KEY to the back door of learning. I believe that each of us CAN move above our self-imposed limitations. Strengths can be acknowledged. I learned I could share the message of “YES, YOU CAN!” and I had the tools to show you how.

My interpreting presentations and trainings are well received.  I am forever thankful for the mentoring of David Evans and William Ross, III, and the opportunities teach, to edit, to stretch, and hone my presenting skills at the IIDS conferences. These educational MASTERS taught me importance of getting to know your audience. As I also learned from Dr. ASL after presenting at the Florida State conference. I was asked to return and talk to the HEART of the Community. There is so much to learn in regards to interpreting – beyond the SIGN.

My professional work was in the Courts as one of the Staff Interpreters as well I started learning LIFE LESSONS that would open new doors of awareness and professional opportunities that led me to this Grow Professionally chapter in my life.

The beginning of my MINDFULLNESS training came in the early 2000’s. I became a licensed Practitioner in 2005 and started seeing clients and small groups learning Mindfulness Tools and practices.

Bringing all of this past history into today’s writing offers the insights received. This LIFE process moved me into the future with the awareness of principals that I knew could enhance our daily experiences as we step into accountability and performance. Skills can improve. Developing ethical dialogs enhance our preparation for the work before us.

I am in the process of writing Forensic Listening. I am actively teaching Forensic Listening to a variety of groups from Veteran Women’s groups to Interpreters Mentorshops to discussions with Administrative Leaders in education and business on the art of Listening.

What Can I Do for You?

As a Forensic Listener I have much to share! Professionally, I am an American Sign Language (ASL) interpreter. For the last 45 years, it has been my business to ‘LISTEN.’ One of the challenges I had as a master mentor was to assist the mentee before me to “step out of the words.” This challenge lived with me personally, and I rose to the challenge of Neural Science.

  • Uplift awareness to the various levels of messages.
  • Define active and passive listening.
  • Understand the benefit of reflections and implicit awareness
  • Decision Making starts in Implicit,
  • Understanding the message is more than the words.

This practice of listening with awareness was occurring years before I started my Spiritual training as a Coach at Agape, where I personally evolved into the Empowerment Coach that I am today. The training I received from my ALSP program clarified an even deeper level of listening. The lessons I continue to learn will be scattered throughout the website as even today I continue to grow.

After living with the personal challenge of “there is more to listening,” and after studying these levels of ‘listening’, I do in fact have insight to share.  My work in “Forensic Listening” has been a life lesson as I endeavor to practice what I teach!  These last previous years of my Professional Interpreting experience, as well as being a business owner and a public speaker have taught me HUGE levels of listening and appreciation to those that actually practice my teachings – uplifting their awareness to the various levels of messages around them!

I look forward to sharing what I have learned in my journey since my documenting and study in this specific type of listening. I look forward to sharing interviews of a variety of Professionals and their stepping out of the default of words and stepping into the power of recognizing the message. Often, in Forensic Listening, the punitive becomes compassionate. Understanding the role of the listener requires more than the hearing of the words. We take on an active meta-cognitive understanding of the brain and so much more! We step into different perspectives and practice tools as well as discuss our process in the learning and awareness gained from listening differently.

Feedback & Reviews

“Bonnie is an incredibly talented, skilled, and professional. Working with her and Pula was like finding the missing piece to creating the perfect dynamic for both the hearing and D/deaf clients. Working with her is truly a gift as there is so much she brings to the table. Her years of dedicated experience as well as her support for her colleagues just to name a few. Her ability to expand and learn about the changes in the Community and her adaptability make her a tremendous asset to any organization that chooses to work with her and Pula. I consider her a powerful Mentor and am blessed to work with her and her heart of gold.”


“Why grow professionally? All professions that are worth while GROW. It is always time to invest in our professional practices and become deliberate about it. If you are a new interpreter, join to learn more. If you are a seasoned interpreter, come and master your skill. How often do we focus on how we listen? Sometimes, we are not aware of how we are not listening keenly until it is taught, illustrated, analyzed and articulated. Until the exchange of ideas, perspectives from deaf professionals expound their experiences and insight is shared. It is then, when enlightment, new knowledge and higher quality interpretation can take place. Masters Mentorshop provides excellent breakout sessions and intimately enrichened weely one-one mentoring time. I encourage you, think about it, COME and be a part!”


“Bonnie Faye’s Interpreter Workshops and Mentorshops have been a tremendous asset to my professional endeavors. Her Forensic Listening workshop has helped me to go deeper into the message to find the meaning. Learning and applying the four parts of active listening (explicit, implicit, inferential, and intuitive) has helped greatly. Bonnie’s style is engaging, and she allows space for learning and gaining confidence. Her commitment to people and the energy and joy she brings to the interpreting profession is uplifting.”