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Spring 2012

Trinity Reporter Spring 2012
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mural at Transperfect Today, the business is headquartered on Park Avenue in midtown Manhattan and numbers over 2,000 employees. With full production facilities located in London and Hong Kong. TransPerfect provides an array of language, technology, and business services to Fortune 1,000 companies in more than 170 languages. The company is a reflection of Elting’s combined passions for language and entrepreneurship. When Elting was a child, her father (Everett Elting ’58) moved the family to Portugal on business. She studied Portuguese and French and immersed herself in the new culture. Her mother was a professional educator: both parents encouraged her to work from a very young age.

While at Trinity, Elting spent her junior year in Córdoba, Spain, and experienced the intersection of language and culture. After graduating, Elting went to Caracas, Venezuela, on an AIESEC (International Association of Economics and Business Students) internship, working in the financial division of a major Venezuelan construction company. When she returned to the United States, she began the search for a position in international business. Her sister, (Lynn Elting ’85) worked at Ogilvy & Mather and suggested their translation division. Elting interviewed, and ended up working there for three years.

As TransPerfect has grown, Elting’s day-to-day activities center on strategic planning, innovation, and ensuring that high standards of quality are maintained as the company expands. She is proud of the fact that most of TransPerfect’s senior management has been promoted from within, many having started at entry-level positions. “Meritocracy is a central value for us” she says adding, “We make sure the best people are rewarded and promoted— we’re equally big believers in holding our people accountable. In turn, we are completely open and transparent with them.”

Liz Elting '87Opportunities in the global marketplace

Time has brought major change to the language services industry since TransPerfect was founded—the Internet and access to the global marketplace have given rise to a host of new opportunities. Just think about the last time you booked a hotel online. If that hotel was part of a global chain, the site might be available in 15 languages, targeting dozens of countries. And in each of those languages customers are constantly making reservations and selecting hotel rooms with rates fluctuating in many different types of currency. Early on, Elting and her partner recognized the need for developing technology and software solutions to help combine the automation of technology with the art of human translation. TransPerfect quickly became a leader in developing and providing solutions to support their clients’ global growth.

TransPerfect has been a four-time recipient of the Inc. 5000 Award, a six-time honoree of the Deloitte Technology Fast 500, and has earned multiple Stevie Awards for sales and customer service. Crain’s New York Business has named TransPerfect as one of the largest privately held companies and one of the largest women-owned companies for six consecutive years. Entrepreneur and the Women President’s Organization have named it one of the fastest-growing women-owned/ led businesses in North America. Elting is profiled in several books and featured regularly in publications including The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Forbes, O (The Oprah Magazine), The Financial Times, and Crain’s New York Business.

Elting has been honored with awards that include the Working Woman “Entrepreneurial Excellence” Award for Customer Service, the Ernst and Young “Entrepreneur of the Year” Award, American Express’ Entrepreneur Magazine “Woman of the Year” Award, and the “Women Worth Watching” Award from the Diversity Journal. She is a frequent speaker to business groups , women’s organizations, and educational institutions. “As the mother of two young sons,” Elting says, “I am grateful to have been able to continue my career through marriage and motherhood. The majority of women in the United States work outside the home, and many experience family-work conflicts. Too many women leave the workforce who could be adding enormous value; we have to help fi gure out how best to retain and support our women employees.” As Elting walks the 56 city blocks from her home to work every day, she says “it’s good undistracted time to plan for the day ahead—and by the time I arrive; I can’t wait to get started.” It doesn’t get any better than that!