CEO, interpreter, translator, coach – Australian/Canadian
Kathleen arrived in Germany from Queensland, Australia in 2009. Over the years, she has made and learned from just about every mistake it’s possible for a foreigner to make in Germany. Out and about, Kathleen noticed that everyone had a red tape horror story to share. She saw English speakers feeling discouraged and frustrated by the lack of help available in Germany. So Red Tape Translation was born in 2012.
As a qualified translator and interpreter, Kathleen specialises in real estate law, civil law contracts and of course, administrative law (the language of red tape!). She is recognised by clients and caseworkers as an expert in navigating German bureaucracy through interpreting, translation and expat coaching. Kathleen is a proud mama of two girls. She sometimes still moonlights as an opera singer.
Administrative assistant – British / German
After scooping up a Bachelor’s degree in French, Katie – ever the one to take a life-changing plunge – decided to move to Germany. Most people thought she was nuts, yet Katie just looks back blithely and says “sounds like the kind of thing I would do”. She hit the ground running, working and studying to replace the frothy French recitations of “papillon” and “bijoux” with the slightly more abrupt German utterances of “Schmetterling” and “Schmuck”. Along the way, she married a German (it happens to the best of us), had two delightful children and managed family life and 6 relocations in 3 different languages. Katie started working at Red Tape Translation in 2018 and takes diligent care of customer service, admin and billing. Her proudest personal bureaucratic achievement is obtaining German citizenship, which took 5 years, ca. 44 sheets of single-sided copy paper and nerves of steel. She is now a dual British/German citizen.
Life Admin assistant – German
Lioba joined us in 2018 to help with administration and customer service and it didn’t take long before we figured out she was supremely talented at helping people and solving problems. The German actor, singer and intersectional feminist spent plenty of time in New York, Beijing and Nairobi and trained at New York Film Academy before moving to Berlin. She now coordinates the Life Admin programme at Red Tape Translation and you’re very likely to hear her warm and gregarious voice on the end of the phone whenever you need help with telephone interpreting.
Administrative assistant – Canadian / German
Sarah is the newest addition to the Red Tape team, having swooped in at the end of 2020 to help us manage our growing pile of daily administrative tasks. Since moving to Germany 16 years ago, Sarah has accumulated a fascinating wealth of experience in world and cultural heritage studies, museum exhibitions, events, research, administration, translation, proofreading and digital marketing.
Translator and interpreter – German
Affectionately known within the Red Tape team as “the bureaucrat whisperer”, Lucas joined us in 2015. Since then, his clever interpreting skills and convivial personality have helped hundreds of expats achieve good outcomes at their public office appointments. He just has a way with people. He can shift the mood with the right turn of phrase and turn a hostile bureaucrat into a willing ally. As a translator, he’s speedy, accurate and reliable, and his work with Red Tape has accompanied him through university studies in political science, countless jobs and volunteer programmes and frequent bouts of spontaneous globetrotting. We’re always keen to hear of his adventures overseas and always equally happy to have him back in Berlin.
Freelance interpreter, Life Admin assistant – Bulgarian / German
Clever, cheerful and always willing to help, Ina is someone you’ll be happy to meet, either online when you book Life Admin or in person when you have to go to a public office and need a stellar interpreter. Ina also takes meticulous care of apartment searches at Red Tape Translation. She is a rising star in the relocation industry and there’s nothing she loves more than sinking her teeth into complex bureaucratic problems. Ina grew up in Bulgaria and Germany and has accumulated a fascinating mix of skills in communication, marketing, interpreting, translation and event planning. She also speaks conversational Korean and Croatian.
Freelance interpreter, Life admin assistant – German
Sandra has so many strings to her bow, it’s hard to keep track. She’s a trained journalist, healthcare worker, coach and interpreter and her latest feat is passing the stringent German “Heilpraktiker” exam. Sandra found out about Red Tape Translation when she took someone to the foreigner’s office – they were so impressed with her skills, they urged her to get in touch with us. We’re very glad she did!
Freelance interpreter – American
In 2018, Thomas joined the Red Tape team as an administrative assistant and wowed us all with his enthusiasm, drive and obsessive attention to detail. He immediately took “good written communication” to the next level and proved a master of consistency and method. When other, more theatrical opportunities came knocking, we farewelled him fondly… but much like the cat who came back, Thomas just couldn’t stay away. He now works with Red Tape Translation as an interpreter, so now our clients get to experience his enthusiasm and drive in person and he still makes it to the theatre in time for his stage call.
Freelance interpreter – American
Kathleen and Kim met each other when they were both enrolled in the same vocational training programme, the rigorous “Ausbildung zum Übersetzer / Dolmetscher” (interpreting and translating course). Kim’s background in pharmacy and education makes her a diligent translator, particularly in the medical and technical fields. Kim speaks fluent English, Spanish and German and is only too familiar with the issues facing expats in Berlin from her own personal experience.
Freelance translator – Australian / Maltese
Kim joined the Red Tape Translation team in 2015 as an administrative assistant and quickly became instrumental in transforming the business into a well-oiled machine with her mad project management skills. When opportunity took her family of four away from Berlin towards Switzerland a few years later, we went to great lengths to keep her around. We simply haven’t found anyone that rocks a purchase contract translation like Kim does. This could be because in a previous life, she was a landscape architect. It might have something to do with the Masters in Construction Project Management she aced while raising two small boys and learning a whole new language (Swiss-German) simultaneously. Or it could simply be because she’s immensely talented.