About

Ad Astra is a reputable language services firm that specializes in administering screened, trained, certified, and experienced interpreters, translators, and transcriptionists in any language on a 24x7x365 basis. Our company’s philosophy is focused on cultural awareness and sensitivity in order to transfer communication between parties from different cultures and abilities. Our firm’s services reflect our commitment to diversity and equity.

Diversity drives our mission and our work in more than 250+ foreign languages as well as signed languages across the full spectrum of language services—on-site foreign language and sign language interpretation; over-the-phone interpretation (OPI); video remote interpretation (VRI); on-site and remote Communication-Access Real-Time (CART); written translation; transcription; and localization services.

Ad Astra is a member of and/or has certifications from the International Medical Interpreters Association (IMIA), National Council on Interpreting in Healthcare (NCIHC), National Association of Judiciary Interpreters and Translators (NAJIT), International Association of Conference Interpreters (IACI), Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID), National Association for the Deaf (NAD), American Translators Association (ATA), National Court Reporter Association (NCRA), Government and state agencies, and other equally recognized organizations.

Ad Astra puts our clients’ needs first. We have a track record of fast response, flexible, cost-effective, accurate, high-quality, and innovative services with countless accolades for our exceptional customer service and intimate understanding of the communities we serve. We are deeply committed to both the Limited English Proficient (LEP) and Deaf/Hard of Hearing communities, and our service model strives to offer as many different services as there are possibilities.

Lena Petrova-Toolsie, President and Founder

Lena Petrova-Toolsie founded Ad Astra with a passion for bringing people together and helping connect diverse communities through language services. The seeds for Ad Astra were initially planted when Lena worked as an interpreter for global media organizations and in political settings in her native Russia. She provided interpreter services for high-level diplomats and others before moving to the United States, where she transferred her skills to administering and creating language services programs for various organizations.

Identifying a need for higher-quality language services to serve the mission critical needs of medical, legal, and Government communities, Lena founded Ad Astra. As a believer in life-long education, Lena also has made it her mission to provide professional development for Ad Astra linguists and clients at no charge. Always working toward ensuring equal language access for all, she also spearheads many pro bono services (such as Translators without Borders) and community events aligned with industry trends and best practices.

Lena received her BA and MA in Applied Linguistics from St.  Petersburg State University in Russia and her MBA from George Washington University’s School of Business in Washington, DC.