What We Do

Certified Interpreting Services (CIS) is primarily a provider of sign language interpreting services for Deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals in Southwestern Pennsylvania serving Pittsburgh, Butler and surrounding areas. Other services include: Transliterating, Mentoring, Instruction, and Consultation.


We appreciate the opportunity to provide on site and in-person professional Sign Language Interpreting services as you provide accommodations to deaf consumers in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act and the more recent Pennsylvania Act 57. At CIS, you can be certain that you are securing a professional with the proper licensure. Please make every effort to obtain services with advance notice to secure dates and times as needed.

Certificates held: Educational Interpreters Performance Assessment, dual certification from the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf, Inc.


We can coordinate American Sign Language instruction for groups large and small. Both accredited and “just for fun” classes are available for students of all ages. If sign language is one of those things that you have always wanted to learn, consider us as all requirements have been met to teach American Sign Language nationally. Making every effort to coordinate this service in advance will help secure dates and times. Contact us to find out where a class is taking place near you. We look forward to hearing from you!

Certificates held: American Sign Language Teachers Association – Master


Arrange mentorship for educational and private practice interpreters as we are committed to assisting you in receiving favorable results. Prearranged workshops are available upon request for your group from an experienced interpreter trainer. Make your request for an hour, a day, a week or for however long by contacting us!

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27 thoughts on “What We Do”

  1. With all the years we’ve been in practice, we have never needed an interpreter. Thanks for teaching this old dog a new trick! It’s a much needed service that she provides.

    Dave – Director of Resource Management

  2. Thank you, Jacki. This was a first for me and I’ve been working here for almost 30 years. Your services were very much appreciated and I know we gave this patient the best care possible. I’ll look forward to working with you again.

    Cindy – Human Resources Specialist

  3. I was most impressed with your service at the recent seminars. The effort that you put into ensuring your preparedness is commendable. You mastered the acronyms and were able to communicate complex data with ease. I look forward to working with you in the near future and appreciate all your help. Have a wonderful holiday season!

    Jean – HR Generalist

  4. I’ve used agencies from the east coast to the west coast. When it comes to interpreters, she’s the best!

    Dan – Manager

  5. Thanks for making this – first time – experience so pleasant. Your tips were helpful to the team and we appreciated your professionalism under these unique circumstances. Looking forward to using the service again. I’ll be referring you!

    Diane – Controller

  6. Ms. Lazzaro is a striking example of professional confidence to my entire class. In addition, she has provided me with immeasurable support and insight. She does this with an appropriate, ethical, and sensitive approach that is a benefit to all concerned. I offer this with my gratitude.

    Robert – Professor

  7. This has been my favorite class since staring college! Jacki incorporates teaching methods to suit a variety of students’ learning styles. Classes were fun-filled and I excelled thanks to her creativity. Thanks for keeping it interesting!

    Brenda – Student

  8. A great learning environment was established from the start. I have already recommended her to other students and even to my coworkers.

    Richard – Therapist

  9. She’s well organized, patient, understanding and brought a smile to each class. I will value her feedback for years to come as she has impacted my life in a number of ways.

    Stephanie – Student

  10. I fully enjoyed your class! Everything Jacki did was informative. She’s very clear in conveying to the class exactly what she expects even while not using our voices. We paid closer attention and learned at a faster rate using our eyes and not our ears. I’ve learned more than I thought possible in one semester! She’s a wonderful, patient and consistent teacher. I’m disappointed that she‘s not teaching my next class. Keep doing what you do – it works!

    Julie – Learning Support Teacher

  11. The activities this semester really pushed me to work at signing. It made me practice to the point that even my dog ran from me when she saw me gearing up to practice and looking for a non-judgmental audience! Thank you again for a very organized and substantive class. Your class put my undergrad sign class to shame!

    Bonnie – Speech Therapist

  12. I really miss seeing you and want to express my eternal gratitude. You know, I have a deaf cousin and it is such a joy that we can sit at the family dinner table now and talk. He said he finally feels like a person in our family – not the outcast. We owe it all to you. THANKS!

    Denise – Student

  13. Thanks for your time and for your patience. You are a great instructor and a pleasant person to be around. I hope to see you again soon.

    Linda – Student

  14. I am writing this on behalf of Jacki Lazzaro. I first met Jacki during a clinical rotation while I was in nursing school three years ago. I was very impressed with her professionalism and her extraordinary abilities/skills that she employed while communicating with her deaf client. Being naturally curious about this fascinating language, I asked her many questions that day about her background as a sign language interpreter and found that she was more than willing to answer any and all of my questions, while still respecting her client’s privacy and needs. Through conversing with her I found that this was more than just her job, it was her true passion. It is my opinion that very few people in their lifetime truly find the direction their life is to take, but for Jacki she has not only found, but embraced her true calling in life. It was this quality that made a lasting impression upon me. Three years later, I would find myself inquiring as to how I could take her American Sign Language course at Butler County Community College.

    As a former student of Jacki’s, I have reflected back upon my semester that I spent taking her class and feel it necessary to mention both her dedication and commitment as a college instructor. Her open door policy was evident from the start of the semester when she provided the class with multiple websites, her personal e-mail address and even her home phone number, so that should we as students have had any questions about the assignments there was always a way for us to seek help. She was committed to presenting materials in a myriad of ways, which gave students every opportunity to understand and learn the materials presented, thus providing us with a solid foundation on which to build our ASL skills.

    Her relaxed classroom setting made it conducive to learning this very extraordinary language. Overall, Jacki provided a general overview of the history of deafness and the importance of the deaf community. Her willingness and ability to extract the best out of each of her students is a gift in and of itself. She encouraged us not to be embarrassed about making mistakes, but instead taught us how to learn from them. Jacki has excelled beyond what it truly means to be a teacher and inspires all those whose life she touches. Jacki is directly responsible for my desire to want to learn more about this language and has certainly sparked my interest in her teaching the next level of this course. I only wish the best for Jacki and the much needed quality services that she provides to the deaf and I wish her continued success

    Christina – R.N.

  15. I really want to thank you for the workshop yesterday. I think I told you that you took a lot of information that I had stored in the back of my head and brought it back to the front. Thanks! I take my job very seriously and I always want to do my best. I will be talking with my supervisor to inform her how great the workshop was and I certainly hope they will continue to have you back for many more.

    Carol – Educational Interpreter

  16. I only wish these types of courses would have been around when I was younger, and starting to interpret! Even though I’m retiring this year, I do not want to leave “burned out,” and hope to continue to grow in my service to the families in the Deaf community. You are a real blessing to interpreters in our NW PA area. For so long, we felt very isolated here in Erie County. We had the desire to grow, but the opportunities were very limited. I truly enjoyed your workshop presentation, which I feel covered many areas where others had never touched. Thanks for all you do to upgrade and enhance the profession of educational interpreting. Keep up the extremely good work!

    Luetta – Educational Interpreter

  17. I just wanted to let you know what a “Wonderful Job” you did. Usually, we are required to attend in-service days where nothing ever applies to us. I could have listened to you all day and the next day and the next day and so on… I felt like I learned a lot of things and you didn’t make a person feel stupid. The things you said made a lot of sense. I am really excited about BC3 in the spring. This sounds like a great start where I can learn from the beginning and of course, from the “BEST”!

    Thank you again and don’t change a thing. You are a real natural. You are just tooooo cute!!! Keep smiling 🙂

    Debi – Educational Interpreter

  18. Each time I attend one of your trainings, your knowledge of the content and your effective style of presenting are a joy to watch!!!

    Marlene – Educational Consultant

  19. I just wanted to email you to let you know some good news!!! I DID IT!!! I DID IT!!! I PASSED THE NIC WRITTEN TEST… FIRST TRY!!! Sorry for shouting… I can’t tell you just what this means to me. It is the culmination of my whole life that started with my late father bringing home a card with the manual alphabet on it when I was only 8 or 10 (I am 43 now). I am planning on taking the performance test as soon as I can. Thanks for all of your help and input into my skills. This success is at least in part due to your mentoring. Again, thanks.

    Jeff – Interpreter

  20. Jacki is highly qualified to provide constructive feedback to her clients. As her mentee, I never felt intimidated by her knowledge, but rather encouraged. She was always willing to collaborate her busy schedule with mine so we could have top quality time together. Jacki would never rush thru her session with me. All sessions were kept highly confidential. She always came prepared so every minute of our time together was profitable. I would recommend her to any interpreter who would like to improve his / her skills.

    Donna – Interpreter

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