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 WAHM > Work at Home Mom Business Success Stories > A Long Distance Partnership that Works: Judy Rakocinski & Cathy Vickio of

A Long Distance Partnership that Works: Judy Rakocinski & Cathy Vickio of
Interview & Article by Alice Seba, editor of

In 1994, Judy Rakocinski was looking into a home based career as a scopist, a person who edits legal transcripts from home for court reporters. That's how she found Cathy Vickio and contacted her about getting started. They have only met in person once since Judy lives in Florida and Cathy lives in Texas. Regardless, a friendship immediately bloomed and has grown since. Cathy helped Judy start her successful career and they continued to be friends.

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After several years, the pair realized that the ratio of scopists to court reporters was about 1,000 to 60,000.

It was clear that the need for professionally trained scopists was great and Judy and Cathy decided to develop a training program for that specific purpose.

Thus, they began to develop their online business at where they offer an online, self-paced course designed to teach people to become professional scopists. They will be celebrating their one-year anniversary in business together in March 2003.

The two credit their home based business success to offering legitimate services at fair, competitive prices that still allows them to make a living. Before embarking on their new venture, they ensured that there would be a large enough potential client pool to make this a viable business. These ladies did their homework before starting, as anyone starting a business should.

To make their online business successful, they took great efforts to make sure their website explained their services in a professional way and took the time to study search engine optimization techniques. Since they also operate a web design business at, they already had a good background to get started.

Working in a partnership has been very rewarding for the two. "Cathy and I talk all day long using email, instant messaging and the telephone," says Judy.

"Judy and I love to brainstorm together," states Cathy, "Sometimes one idea generates ten more...Also, we value each other's opinions, so we don't get our feelings hurt when one spots something the other doesn't care for."

Both say the only drawback is that they are so far away from each other. They have become great friends and feel very close to one another, but both wish they could truly get to know one another in person.

In the coming year, BeST will continue to accept more students and have recently made additions to the program itself. They have just implemented a brand new service being marketed to court reporting firms all over the country. The service will allow court reporters to simply click on a link to another web site they designed called, fill out the appropriate information and they will be matched with a scopist. Everything is done electronically, so it will be quick and easy. It will also allow BeST's graduates access to work immediately upon the completion of their training.

Says Judy - "Running a business from home has been an answered prayer. Scoping allows me to be home when my children come home from school, and my husband and I are able to spend quality time together. When people ask for more information about scoping and the benefits it affords, we direct them to the following websites: ~ web page for support ~ scoping FAQs
Scopist's Support Group ~ Yahoo! Group for support

Says Cathy - "After 20+ years in the corporate world, having my own business that I operate from my home has been a dream come true. I'm able to spend time with my four parrots (meet the family at my home page) and take care of different things during the day when it's most convenient. And as an added bonus, this year my husband (John) joined me and is working full-time as a scopist and proofreader also!"

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