Ayotte & Shackelford, Inc. is a Certified Court Reporter owned and operated agency that has been a partner with the legal community since 1977. It is comprised of two principals: Donna Ayotte Evans and Laura Shackelford.

We share your commitment to excellence. Our court reporting team has been delivering more than just words for over 30 years. We continually upgrade and keep abreast of the newest technologies to provide the benefits of that technology to our clients. Ayotte & Shackelford and their staff is dedicated to providing professional, friendly service and building strong relationships with the attorneys and their support staff.

Donna Ayotte Evans & Laura Shackelford

Donna Ayotte Evans has deep roots within the Coachella Valley. She is a long-time resident of Palm Desert, having attended grammar school in Palm Desert and high school in Indio. Because of her love of the desert and her loyalty to community, Donna returned to the Palm Desert area once she completed her education. She was trained as a Court Reporter in San Diego, where she had the good fortune to meet Laura Shackelford. She easily convinced Laura and Laura’s husband to give up the beach, and the two women professionals opened the first court reporting agency to be established in the desert cities in 1977.

They quickly embraced the computer technologies which began to develop in the early 1980s. To this day, they continue to provide the most up-to-date computer-aided technology for their clients, which is essential to time and cost-efficient management of legal resources. Ayotte & Shackelford commonly utilizes real-time, (can supply free real-time viewing software), Live-Note, expedited transcripts through electronic transcript formats, a new web-based video conferencing, video synchronization, interpreting services, document depository services, client repository and Bates stamping in their daily office management and in servicing their client’s business requirements. Ayotte & Shackelford can scan OCR documents to CDs, which is a cost-savings green measure for reproduction and distribution of documents. They can arrange for documents to be uploaded to a Repository, and then give the law firms access to those repository services to view documents. No more time traveling to the court reporter’s offices to view construction defect documents. They encourage law firms to order certified transcripts in either paperless format or mini-format, again, to eliminate the need for large paper files and to help our environment.

Ayotte & Shackelford also specializes in a wide range of litigation services such as Personal Injury, Medical Malpractice, Construction Defect, Product Liability, Divorce and Family Law (including Domestic Partnerships), Wills & Trust, Probate, Banking & Securities, Employment Law, Real Estate and General Civil Litigation. There are very few types of cases they have not handled over their many years in business, which means crisp, clear transcripts. They have handled high-profile celebrity litigation with the utmost attention to privacy of the parties.

Donna and Laura are well-known to the local legal community of attorneys, judges, court personnel, and auxiliary staff, because they are active court reporters involved in the day-to day depositions and know what is important to their clients. They care deeply about the quality of their professional and business relationships. Their attention to detail and always putting their clients’ needs first is the key to their many years of success. They also credit their Office Manager of over 20 years, Veronica “Roni” Hernandez, for being the “go-to” person. She has established trusting relationships with the legal assistants and paralegals. It is rare for business partnerships to withstand the test of time, but Donna and Laura have accomplished this feat for the past 33 years.

The Ayotte & Shackelford Directory of Attorneys is an icon within the local legal community, a publication they have been producing for over two decades without charge. As one might imagine, it has steadily increased in size as the result of growth of the local population and the welcome influx of legal professionals from other locales and satellite offices. It lists relevant contact data for all locally practicing attorneys in one convenient document, together with information regarding the Judges and Commissioners serving the Indio Branch of the Riverside Superior Court along with the Public Defenders and Prosecutors assigned to Indio. While a hard copy is produced only every two years, their new Online Legal Directory is kept up-to-date as changes are noted. The legal community has come to rely on this convenient one-stop source of local information and it is unlikely there is an attorney, paralegal, secretary, or legal staff person in the desert who doesn't have it sitting next to their computer keyboard or telephone.

On a personal note:

Donna Ayotte Evans and her husband have raised six children in Palm Desert, five boys and one girl. The boys are avid surfers, as is Donna’s husband, who also happens to be a legal professional in the community. Their daughter is an administrator for a local business college and an active Mary Kay representative, along with being an accomplished horseback rider. Their second son is an in-house attorney who also holds his patent license. He works for a pharmaceutical company in Carlsbad. Their third son is a firefighter/paramedic with Cal Fire. The fourth son is graduating paramedic school and hopes to follow his brother’s career path with the fire department. Their youngest son graduated UCLA and is in the environmental field of tracking and tagging wildlife for conservation purposes.

Laura Shackelford began her career in commercial banking in San Diego. After being offered an opportunity to go into the lending program with San Diego Trust & Savings, she decided she wanted to make a career change. Laura's court reporting career has afforded her the opportunity to work not only with attorneys and judges, but she has also worked with best-selling authors such as Marianne Willliamson, Neale Donald Walsch and Barbara Marx Hubbard.

Laura is also a spiritual counselor, as well as a highly sought after motivational speaker. She feels her two greatest accomplishments are her two sons: Ryan, who created the Ayotte & Shackelford web site and majors in computer technology; and Cory, who is in his third year of law school in the Orange County area.

Isn't it reassuring to know that your court reporting resource persons are professionals thoroughly dedicated to, and fully trained and informed for, the work they love?

"We Provide More Than Just Words"


Ayotte & Shackelford, Inc. is a member of the National Court Reporters Association, the California Court Reporters Association, and the Society for the Technological Advancement of Reporters.