Presenters

Crista Cowen

Crista CowenCrista Cowan has been employed by Ancestry.com since 2004; her involvement in family history, however, reaches all the way back to childhood. From being parked under a microfilm reader at the Family History Library in her baby carrier to her current career as a professional genealogist, Crista has spent thousands of hours discovering, documenting, and telling family stories.

In her time at Ancestry she has been a European Content Acquisition Manager, the Digital Preservation Indexing Manager and the Community Alliance Manager for the Ancestry World Archives Project. For the past several years she has been the Corporate Genealogist, with responsibilities for speaking and teaching at genealogy conferences around the world and helping with family history research for public relations stories. Known online as The Barefoot Genealogist with a regular internet show designed to help people discover their family history.

Luana Darby

Luana Darby is a professional genealogist, lecturer and educator who lives in West Jordan with her husband and children. She has over 35 years of genealogical experience. Graduating from Brigham Young University with a degree in Family History and later receiving a master’s degree in Library Science from San Jose State University, she brings a broad base of knowledge and experience to her clients and audience. She is the owner of Lineages by Luana, a genealogical research company which focuses on US/Canada and Western European research. She has lectured at many genealogical and historical conferences, including NGS, FGS, RootsTech, UGA, BYU and ICAPGen.

Luana M. Darby, founder of Lineages by Luana, grew up in Washington state in a multi-generational family. She attended Ricks College and BYU, majoring in business management. After college she lived in Argentina for a short time before returning to Washington, where she married and raised four children. The family moved to Utah in 1999 and not long after, she returned to BYU to finish her studies, obtaining a B.A. in Family History. In 2009, she obtained a master's degree in Library and Information Science from San Jose State University, graduating in May of 2012.

In addition to her education at BYU and SJSU, Luana has completed several in-depth tracks of study at the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy (SLIG) which cover Advanced Genealogical Methods, Research in German Speaking Areas, Problem Solving in the Midwest, American Records and Research, Computers and Technology in Genealogy, Advanced Methodologies -Land Records, Forensic Genealogy and Genetic Genealogy. Genealogy and the recording of family history has always been a passion for Luana. She began organizing photos, documents, and information on her grandmother's family in 1977 and has researched for others since 1985, working as a professional genealogist since 1995 and as a forensic genealogist since 2012. She frequently travels to Europe for genealogical research on site in archives in Germany, Poland France and Italy. She is a member of the Association of Professional Genealogists, the Genealogical Speaker's Guild, the National Genealogical Society and the International Society of Family History Writers and Editors (IFSHWE). She has served as director (2009-2011), vice president (2009), president (2010-2011), and treasurer (2012) of the Utah Genealogical Association and served on the board of the Association of Professional Genealogists and as an indexer for the Illinois State Genealogical Society Quarterly. She joined the faculty of BYU-Idaho from 2015-2018, as an online family history instructor teaching analysis and genealogy as a business courses. She worked as an in-house genealogist for BYU-TV’s series Relative Race in seasons 3 & 4 and was the chair of the NGS 2020 virtual conference in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Diana Elder AG

Diana Elder AG is a professional genealogist accredited in the Gulf South region of the United States and serves as a Commissioner for The International Commission for the Accreditation of Professional Genealogists (ICAPGen). Diana authored Research Like a Pro: A Genealogist’s Guide and co-authored the companion volume, Research Like a Pro with DNA: A Genealogist’s Guide to Finding and Confirming Ancestors with DNA Evidence. She first used Y-DNA in 2009 to connect her Texas Royston family to the descendants of emigrant John Royston, born in 1610 of Virginia. Since then Diana has continued to add to her DNA knowledge and experience. She completed the Advanced DNA course at the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy and uses DNA in her client work as well as her own family history research. Diana and her daughter, Nicole Dyer, are the hosts of the Research Like a Pro Genealogy Podcast and share research tips on their website, Family Locket.

Joseph B. Everett, AG, MLS

Joseph B. Everett, AG®, MLS is the Family History, Local History, and Microforms Librarian at the Brigham Young University Harold B. Lee Library. He has over 25 years combined experience in the genealogical field at BYU, the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, and Ancestry.com. Joe manages the collections and patron services of the BYU Family History Library and serves as a faculty liaison to instructors in BYU’s Family History undergraduate degree program and others involved in family history on campus. He is accredited for research in Germany and Russia.

At FamilySearch, Joe was a library program manager providing services for the more than 5,000 family history centers. Previously at FamilySearch, he headed the International Reference floor at the Family History Library and worked for several years as a technical services librarian, cataloging Slavic and Germanic records. He has served on numerous strategic planning and program development teams at FamilySearch. At Ancestry.com, he worked in content acquisitions and content product and project management, putting genealogical databases online.

Joe earned a B.A. in Russian Language and in Family History/Genealogy (German emphasis) from Brigham Young University and a Master of Library Science from Emporia State University (Kansas). He has been a member and officer in various library and genealogical associations and has lectured and published articles on U.S. and European family history research, historical geography, and migration.

Rick Fogarty

Rick Fogarty is a professional genealogist and lecturer in Hazlet, New Jersey. He is a third-generation genealogist with deep Oklahoma roots and a citizen of the Muscogee Nation. He specializes in Native American tribal, adoption, and DNA/forensic genealogical research. He has attended the Boston University forensic genealogy course, the Forensic Genealogy Institute genetic genealogy course, Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy, and the Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research. He is a life member of the Association of Professional Genealogists. He is an instructor on Native American tribal genealogy for several institutes and lectures frequently on many genealogical topics.

Emily Garber, MA

Emily Garber, MAAn archaeologist by training (B.A., and M.A.), Emily Garber has been researching her Jewish family heritage since 2007 and holds a certificate from Boston University's Genealogical Research program. She is a family history researcher, writer and speaker and owns Extra Yad Genealogical Services.

Emily blogs at (going) The Extra Yad, has written two books and several articles on genealogical research. She serves as chair of the Phoenix Jewish Genealogy Group and board member of the International Association of Jewish Genealogical Societies and the Arizona Jewish Historical Society.

LaBrenda Garrett-Nelson, JD, LLM, CG, CGL

LaBrenda Garrett-Nelson is a trustee and current President of the Board for Certification of Genealogists. She earned a BA from John Jay College of Criminal Justice, City University of New York, and both a Law degree and a Master of Laws degree from New York University School of Law. While practicing law LaBrenda authored several editions of her family history as well as two church histories. She is now a full-time genealogist focused on writing and teaching, and currently serves as the Registrar General of the Sons and Daughters of the United States Middle Passage, a national lineage society that honors ancestors who were enslaved in the United States.

In 2016 She published A Guide to Researching African American Ancestors in Laurens County, South Carolina and Selected Finding Aids, a book that was acclaimed as a model for research in South Carolina and other states. She has published articles in the National Genealogical Society Quarterly, as well as in other publications listed on her website. She is the SLIG Course Coordinator for the African American Genealogy track, and is also on the faculty of three other major institutes: the Genealogical Research Institute of Pittsburgh, the Genealogical Institute on Federal Records, and the Institute of Genealogy & Historical Research. She served as a facilitator (teaching assistant) on the faculty of Boston University’s Online Genealogical Program from 2016–2019, and was the mentor of ProGen 37.

Jana K. Greenhalgh, AG

Jana Greenhalgh is an Accredited Genealogist®specializing in England research. She graduated from BYU in 2003 with a BA degree in Genealogy & Family History. She has been an instructor for BYU-Idaho’s online family history degree program, served on the Board of Directors for the Utah Genealogical Association, and as the Level 1 Chair for ICAPGen’s Testing Committee. She currently serves on the Conferences & Education Committee for ICAPGen. She has presented at various genealogy conferences and has enjoyed being involved with RootsTech as an Ambassador and presenter for many years. Jana and her husband Brent live in Lehi, Utah with their seven children, and just for fun, they share their family history adventures via social media and online at The Genealogy Kids.

Debbie Gurtler, AG

Debbie Gurtler, AG® graduated with honors from Brigham Young University with a Bachelor's degree in Family History. She worked as an intern at the New England Historic Genealogical Society. She has made research trips to archives in Spain, Portugal, Virginia, and North Carolina.

She is employed by FamilySearch where she is currently the manager of the Latin America –Southern Europe and German/Slavic teams at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City. She is fluent in Spanish. She can also read genealogical documents in Portuguese, Italian, and French. She is a member of several genealogical societies including HISPAGEN and Antzinako in Spain, the National Genealogical Society (NGS), the Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS), the Association of Professional Genealogists (APG), and the Utah Genealogical Association (UGA) in the United States.

Debbie holds four AG® credentials. They include Spain, the United States Mid-South region, Mexico and Portugal. She has presented at conferences from all over the world, including RootsTech, RootsTech London, NGS, FGS, SLIG, Expo Genealogía and numerous other regional conferences.

Her publications include an article in the magazine of the National Genealogy Society. “Introduction to Research in Latin America,”[NGS Magazine 41, no. 3 (July-September 2015): 37-41] and the guide: Genealogy at a Glance: Mexico Genealogy Research available through Genealogical.com.

Her greatest joy comes from being the mother of three adult children and grandmother to four beautiful grandchildren. She has traveled extensively and lived for more than 5 years outside of the United States in Chile and Peru.

Amy Harris, PhD, AG

Amy Harris, PhD, AG®, is the current Family History Bachelor’s Program coordinator at BYU. A native of Ogden, Utah, she was lucky enough to be raised by spectacularly good parents and usually stellar siblings. After receiving a family history BA with university honors at Brigham Young University, she completed an MA in European history at American University and a PhD in British history at the University of California, Berkeley. Her research focuses on families, women, and gender in eighteenth-century Britain, though she has also written on family and genealogy in the LDS context.

All of her work combines historical and genealogical methodologies. She is particularly interested in the way family and social relationships inform one another. Her first book, Siblinghood and Social Relations in Georgian England(2012) explored sibling relationships and their connections to political and social ideas of equality. Her next major work, Family Life in England and America, 1690-1820 (Pickering and Chatto, 2015), was a four-volume, co-edited collection of transcribed and annotated primary sources describing eighteenth-century family life. More recently her article “Early Mormonism’s Expansive Family and the Browett Women” received the 2018 Mormon History Association Best Article Award. In 2018 she also published “A Genealogical Turn: Possibilities for Mormon Studies and Genealogical Scholarship” in Mormon Studies Review. She is currently working on a new book:A Single View: Family Life and the Unmarried in Georgian England, which analyzes family relations across the lifespan of never-married men and women.

Amy has served on the ICAPGen board and been a book review editor for the Journal of British Studies. She is a tenured professor in the BYU Department of History where she teaches British history; history of families and women; introductory and advanced genealogy courses; English paleography; and women’s studies. Additionally, she supervises three research databases at the Center for Family History and Genealogy: Discovering English Ancestors; Kinship and Poverty in Early Modern Britain; and the Early British Census project.

Melinda Daffin Henningfield, CG, CGL

Melinda Daffin Henningfield, CG, CGL, is a professional genealogist, lecturer, and author. She has served as a trustee for the Board for Certification of Genealogists. She has written articles published in the National Genealogical Society Quarterly, OnBoard, Crossroads, and other genealogical publications. She lectures at conferences and is an instructor for SLIG. She specializes in solving complex genealogical problems involving DNA, separating and identifying individuals with common names, as well as migration, and immigration.

Diane Henriks

Diane Henriks is a Los Angeles County based Professional Genealogist and investigator who uses advanced deductive reasoning and logical constructs to thoroughly investigate a case, with a specialty in finding living descendants in family trees, and has worked closely with private investigators to find living people, while also assisting in background investigations, in both civil and criminal cases. She has been researching family history and genealogy for the past 11 years. She has researched many of her own family lines, as well as that of her clients, and is a member of the Association of Professional Genealogists and the Southern California Genealogical Society. She was asked by genealogists at the Southern California Genealogical Society, years ago, to publish her works, and has since published the following books: Descendants of Johann Adam Steinmann, Descendants of George W. Taylor, Descendants of Ira S. Hulet, Descendants of John Beveridge, Descendants of Albert Murphy, Descendants of Samuel Baer, Descendants of Daniel E. Eddy, Descendants of Cipriano Graciano and Jose Maria Gutierres, Descendants of Ezekiel Bee, and she helped compile and publish the Book, Just Plain Folk- Descendants of William C. Clark, by Elizabeth Rose Cameron. What started out as a small hobby, when a hand drawn family tree was given to her by her father, has since become a great obsession!

Gretchen Jorgensen

Gretchen JorgensenGretchen Jorgensen is a research team manager and professional genealogist with Legacy Tree Genealogists, specializing in DNA analysis to solve genealogical brick walls. Areas of expertise include Y-DNA/Big Y interpretation as well as creative utilization of autosomal DNA clustering tools. She holds a B.S. in Applied Mathematics and Statistics from Colorado State University. Past career endeavors include more than a decade as a Software Engineer for a Fortune 100 company, followed by 17 years as a stay-at-home mom. Gretchen has been a SLIG instructor and course TA for Paul Woodbury’s “Introduction to Genetic Genealogy” course since 2019.

Fritz Juengling, PhD, AG

Doctor Juengling received his Bachelor’s degrees in German Studies and Secondary Education at Western Oregon University, his Master’s and Doctorate in Germanic Philology with minors in both English and Linguistics at the University of Minnesota. Germanic Philology is a highly specialized field of study, combining languages, linguistics, paleography and history. For his graduate degrees, Dr. Juengling was required to demonstrate competence in English, German, Medieval Latin and two other modern languages. He chose Dutch and Norwegian. He also took courses in Old, Middle, and Early Modern English, Old and Middle High German, Old Norse (Old Icelandic), Gothic, Old Frisian, Old Saxon, and Middle Dutch. He has taught German, English, Latin and Old English (Anglo-Saxon) at the high school and university levels. He is an Accredited Genealogist® for Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, Norway, and Sweden through the International Commission for the Accreditation of Professional Genealogists, and certified by the Verband deutschsprachigerBerufsgenealogen. Dr. Juengling is a German, Dutch, and Scandinavian Research Consultant at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Jacqueline Kanyuck, AG

Jacqueline Kanyuck, AGJacqueline Kanyuck is a United States and Canada Research Specialist at the FamilySearch Family History Library. She graduated from BYU with a BA in Family History/Genealogy. She has extensive knowledge and experience writing and presenting training for genealogical research, working with guests at the Family History Library, and as a genealogical researcher. Jacqueline has written and presented a variety of different United States and Canada research classes for the Family History Library including presentations on Quebec Notarial Records and Ontario Land records. Her research specialties include the U.S. South Central region. She also specializes in Canadian research with an emphasis on the Atlantic Provinces. She can read German and French records, including the old German script handwriting. Jacqueline has also attended many seminars in Utah and Canada, including several visits to the Archives of Ontario located in Toronto.

Rebecca Whitman Koford, CG, CGL

Rebecca Whitman Koford holds credentials as a Certified Genealogist® and as a Certified Genealogical LecturerSM. Her focuses are Maryland and military records at the National Archives, especially those of the War of 1812. Rebecca has been taking clients and lecturing since 2004. She has spoken for the National Genealogical Society Conference (NGS), Federation of Genealogical Societies Conference (FGS), Association of Professional Genealogists Conference (APG), RootsTech, webinars for Legacy and APG, and the Maryland State Archives. She has published articles in the NGS Magazine, APG Magazine, SAR Magazine, and the Maryland Genealogical Society Journal. Rebecca is also the Course I coordinator for The Institute of Genealogical and Historical Research (IGHR) and has been an instructor at the Genealogical Research Institute of Pittsburg (GRIP) and the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy (SLIG). She is a graduate and former mentor of the ProGen Study Group, an online peer-led study program based on the book Professional Genealogy by Elizabeth Shown Mills; and served as the ProGen Administrator from 2015–2020. Rebecca currently works as Executive Director of the Board for Certification of Genealogists® and as Director of the Genealogical Institute on Federal Records (Gen-Fed) held annually at the National Archives in Washington, D.C.

Lianne Kruger

Lianne Kruger is a professional genealogist and speaker specializing in Canada, homesteading for U.S. and Canada, video recording family history, and using technology in all aspects of genealogy. She is a member of the board of mitoYDNA.org. She is on the Ancestry.ca advisory board and is the webmaster, database and social media chair for Alberta Genealogical Society (AGS). She previously served six years as 1stVP of AGS and President of Red Deer Branch.

She earned the AGS President’s award in 2020. She earned a computer degree and has taught computer software courses since 1982. She has recently earned a certificate and Associate degree in Family History from Brigham Young University Idaho.

Lianne is a frequent speaker at conferences and webinars including RootsTech, NGS, Legacy FamilyTree Webinars, FamilyRoots, THE Genealogy Show (UK), Vivid-Pix, Ontario Ancestors, and BIFHSGO. She has had articles published in BYU Studies Quarterly, FamilySearch, Ancestry, LDSTech, SK Translations, ISBGFH, and AGS Relatively Speaking. Lianne is a member of Associate of Professional Genealogists, AGS, Ontario Ancestors, and National Genealogical Society.

Peggy Clemens Lauritzen, AG

Peggy Clemens Lauritzen, AGPeggy Lauritzen has been an Accredited Genealogist for nearly thirty-five years and has been involved in genealogy research her entire life. She is the author of several Legacy QuickGuides on Appalachia, an instructor at Ancestry Academy and Family Tree University, an instructor at several GRIP and SLIG courses, and a columnist forReminisceMagazine. In 2018 she was the recipient of the Laura G. Prescott Award for Exemplary Service to Professional Genealogy and became a Fellow of the Ohio Genealogical Society. She is a former researcher at Ancestry ProGenealogists.

Michelle Leonard

Michelle Leonard is a professional genealogist, DNA detective, speaker, author and historian.She runs her own genealogy and DNA consultancy business, Genes & Genealogy, and specializes in solving unknown parentage and all manner of unknown ancestor mysteries using a combination of expert DNA analysis and conventional genealogy research methods. She also undertakes traditional family history research, living relative tracing, historical and television research, podcasts, tutoring, lecturing, bespoke family history books, webinars, speaking engagements and article, blog and book writing commissions.

Michelle is a very experienced public speaker and regularly speaks in person at major genealogy events as well as virtually for global audiences via webinars and e-conferences for a myriad of groups, societies and established providers such as Legacy Family Tree Webinars. She is also a co-author of "Tracing Your Ancestors Using DNA: A Guide For Family Historians" published by Pen & Sword in June 2019 and regularly writes for publications such as Family Tree Magazine (UK).

Michelle is also known for her involvement with the ground-breaking Fromelles Genealogy Project during which she tracked down appropriate DNA donors to identify WWI soldiers buried in a mass grave in France and served as the Genealogical Consultant on the official Fromelles documentary "WW1: Finding The Lost Battalions".

Additionally Michelle is the official genetic genealogist of #AncestryHour and is one of the hosts of the hour itself which takes place on Twitter each Tuesday evening from 7-8pm GMT.

Rev. David McDonald, DMin

Rev. David McDonald, DMinRev. David Mc Donald, DMin, is the president of the Association of Professional Genealogists, past president and trustee of the Board for Certification of Genealogists, and is a former director of the National Genealogical Society. He has published articles in the National Genealogical Society Quarterly, APG Quarterly, the Illinois State Genealogical Society Newsletter, the Wisconsin State Genealogical Society Newsletter, NewBrassKey (Nebraska Genealogical Society's newsletter), Hawkeye Heritage (Iowa Genealogical Society's newsletter) and numerous local societies' newsletters and quarterlies. Dave has also written or edited several family genealogies.

His teaching fields include churches and their records, research in the American Midwest, advanced methodology and government documents and publications. Dave has lectured and coordinated courses for SLIG, GRIP, and IGHR. He has been a student at all these institutes, plus Gen-Fed.

A Protestant minister and professional genealogist, he is a former staffer with Ancestry ProGenealogists and has a private research practice based near Madison, Wisconsin.

Angela Packer McGhie, CG, FUGA

Angela Packer McGhie, CG, FUGAAngela Packer McGhie, CG, FUGA has a passion for teaching genealogy. She is the Education Director of the National Genealogical Society and the Vice President of the Board for Certification of Genealogists. Angela enjoys coordinating courses for the Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research and the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy as well as teaching at several other genealogy institutes.

Angela served as the administrator of the ProGenStudy Program for six years and is now on the board of directors.She is a past chapter president of the Association of Professional Genealogists and currently serves a trustee for the Board for Certification of Genealogists Education Fund. She has published articles in UGA’s Crossroads magazine, the APG Quarterly, and the NGS Magazine.In January of 2021 Angela was awarded the distinction of Fellow of the Utah Genealogical Society.

Anne Merrell

Anne Leishman Merrell is a professional genealogist and digital marketer. She earned her B.A. in Family History & Genealogy from BYU. Since then, she has worked as a client researcher & DAR Staff Genealogist. More recently, Anne has shifted her focus to teaching genealogy & family history professionals how to leverage digital marketing techniques to increase their reach and revenue.

Paul Milner, MDiv, FUGA

Paul Milner, a native of northern England, is a professional genealogist and international lecturer. He teaches week-long English and Scottish research tracks at the Institute of Genealogical and Historical Research (IGHR), Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy (SLIG), and the British Institute. Paul is a recipient of UGA Fellow Award (2018) and the David S. Vogels Jr. Award from FGS (2019). He is the author of six publications providing how-to guidance for English and Scottish researchers. Paul has specialized in British Isles genealogical research for over 35 years. Paul is currently the book review editor for the BIGWILL newsletter and retired review editor of the FGS FORUM. He is the past-president of the British Interest Group of Wisconsin and Illinois (BIGWILL), and a past board member of the APG, FGS and GSG. Paul focuses on British Isles resources and methodology on his blog.

Kelvin L. Meyers

Kelvin L. MeyersA fifth generation Texan and professional forensic genealogist since 1996, Kelvin is a frequent speaker to genealogical societies and family associations throughout the United States. He specializes in southern brick wall problems for clients.

Kelvin is a 1989 and 1990 alumnus of the Institute of Genealogical and Historical Research at Samford University and has returned to IGHR as lecturer in the Southern Course and the Professional Courses.

He is a past board member of the Association of Professional Genealogist, a past President of the Lone Star Chapter of APG, and a former member for the Council for the Advancement of Forensic Genealogy(CAFG). He currently serves as the chairman of the history and archives committee of First United Methodist Church in Dallas.

The Dallas Genealogical Society awarded Kelvin the Lloyd DeWitt Bockstruck Distinguished Service Award in December of 2018.

In 2016 Kelvin published Research in Texas for NGS (National Genealogical Society) Research in the States series. Kelvin is also the director of the Texas Institute of Genealogical Research (TIGR) sponsored by the Texas State Genealogical Society.

Cheri Hudson Passey

Cheri Hudson Passey is a Professional Genealogist, Instructor, Writer, and Speaker and the owner of Carolina Girl Genealogy, LLC, which provides research services as well as instruction and coaching though her Genealogy 1-on-1 classes. Cheri is the host of the genealogy chat show GenFriends seen on YouTube and is a genealogical researcher, subcontracted by Eagle Investigative Services, Inc., for the US Army Past Conflict Repatriations Branch. Cheri enjoys volunteering and serving the genealogy community. She is currently serving as the Vice President of Society Management for the National Genealogical Society, and Marketing Chair for the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy.

Gena Philibert-Ortega, MA, MAR

Gena Philibert-Ortega, MA, MARGena Philibert-Ortega is an author, researcher, and instructor whose focus is genealogy, social and women's history. She holds a Master’s degree in Interdisciplinary Studies (Psychology and Women's Studies) and a Master’s degree in Religion. Her published works include two books, numerous articles published in magazines and online, as well as five editions of the Tracing Your Ancestors series from Morsehead Publishing. She is the editor of the Utah Genealogical Association’s magazine, Crossroads. Her writings can be found on her blogs, Gena’s Genealogy and Food.Family.Ephemera as well as the GenealogyBank and Legacy Webinars blogs. She is a course instructor for The National Institute for Genealogical Studies. She has presented to diverse groups worldwide including the Legacy Family Tree Webinar series. Her current research includes women's repatriation and citizenship in the 20th century, foodways and community in fundraising cookbooks, and women's material culture.

Mary Kircher Roddy, CG

Mary Kircher Roddy, CG®, grew up in San Rafael, California. She earned a Bachelor degree in Liberal Studies from The University of California, Riverside in 1982 and a Master in Professional Accounting from the University of Texas in 1984. She earned a certificate in Genealogy and Family History at the University of Washington in 2005. She was credentialed by the Board for Certification of Genealogists® in 2019, Certificate No. 1113. She works part-time as a Certified Public Accountant, and part-time as a genealogical speaker, writer and genealogy coach.

Mary became interested in genealogy in 2000 in anticipation of a sabbatical in Ireland where her husband was a Fulbright Scholar at the University of Limerick. She was sure she would complete all her Irish genealogy while her husband taught at UL and her children attended Monaleen school. Twenty-plus years later, the genealogy is still a work in progress. But the trip to Ireland awakened something deep in her Celtic bloodlines, the Irish tradition of the Seanachi, the storytellers and historians of yore.

Mary has published articles in many publications including The National Genealogical Society Quarterly, NGS Magazine, Family Chronicle (now called Your Genealogy Today), Internet Genealogy, as well as society publications in the US, Australia and Canada. She also writes a regular blog, Searching For Stories.

Mary frequently lectures around the Seattle area. Her husband's most recent sabbatical brought them to Sydney, Australia and while he taught at the University of Western Sydney, Mary spent her time swapping research strategies and methodologies with the genealogists at the Botany Bay Family History Society. She is a member of the Seattle Genealogical Society, the National Genealogical Society and the Association of Professional Genealogists, where she serves as APG Treasurer.

Judy G. Russell, JD, CG, CGL

The Legal Genealogist Judy G. Russell is a genealogist with a law degree. She writes, teaches and lectures on a wide variety of genealogical topics, ranging from using court records in family history to understanding DNA testing. A Colorado native with roots deep in the American south on her mother’s side and entirely in Germany on her father’s side, she holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism with a political science minor from George Washington University in Washington, D.C. and a law degree from Rutgers School of Law-Newark. Before she retired, she worked as a newspaper reporter, trade association writer, legal investigator, defense attorney, federal prosecutor, law editor and, for more than 20 years, was an adjunct member of the faculty at Rutgers Law School.

She is a member of the Association of Professional Genealogists, the National Genealogical Society and numerous state and regional genealogical societies. She has written for the National Genealogical Society Quarterly (from which she received the 2017 Award of Excellence), the National Genealogical Society Magazine, the FGS Forum, BCG’s OnBoard, and Family Tree Magazine, among other publications.On the faculty of the Institute ofGenealogy and Historical Research, the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy, the Genealogical Research Institute of Pittsburgh, the Midwest African American Genealogy Institute, and the Genealogical Institute on Federal Records, she is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Board for Certification of Genealogists®, from which she holds credentials as a Certified Genealogist® and Certified Genealogical Lecturerâ„ . Her award-winning blog appears at The Legal Genealogist.

Suzanne Russo Adams, AG

Suzanne Russo Adams, MA, AG is accredited in Italian research and has been researching Italian roots for more than 20 years. She is a graduate of Brigham Young University (BYU) with a BS in Sociology and a BA in family history/genealogy. She also has a master’s degree in European History from BYU. Her experience ranges from research to genealogy technology to conferences and speaking.

Suzanne worked for Ancestry.com for 12 years in record strategy, acquisition, and content digitization as well as PR, community relations and conferences. She has spent the last 10 years employed at FamilySearch.org as a Sr. Content Strategist with responsibilities for record acquisition strategy in the United States, Latin America, Southern Europe, Adriatic, Australia, and the Pacific Isles.

Suzanne has served as a board member for the Association of Professional Genealogists (APG), Utah Genealogical Association (UGA), and as a commissioner for the International Commission for the Accreditation of Professional Genealogists (ICAPGen). She was a lead researcher for NBC’s US season 1 of “Who Do You Think You Are?” and is credited for her work on the Susan Sarandon and Brooke Shields episodes. She is also the author of Finding Your Italian Ancestors: A Beginner’s Guide (Ancestry, 2008.)

Richard G. Sayre, CG, CGL, FUGA

Rick Sayre, CG, CGL, FUGA, a retired colonel who served 31 years in the U.S. Army, is a long-time researcher and instructor in genealogical topics. Rick is current secretary and immediate past president of BCG. He coordinates the Advanced Land course and the Using Maps in Genealogy course offered by the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy (SLIG), and he instructs in several other courses at SLIG. Rick co-coordinates with Judy Russell, JD, CG, CGL, the Law School for Genealogists course at Genealogical Research Institute of Pittsburgh (GRIP) and the Family History Law Library course at SLIG. He also lectures at national conferences and presents nationwide seminars. His areas of expertise encompass records of the National Archives, the Bureau of Land Management, and the Daughters of the American Revolution, including military records, land records, using maps in genealogy, urban research, and government documents. Rick specializes in the localities of western Pennsylvania and Ohio.

Michael L. Strauss, AG

Michael L. Strauss, AG®, is a professional Accredited Genealogist® and a nationally recognized speaker. A native of Pennsylvania and a resident of Utah, he has been employed as a Forensic Investigator for nearly 30 years. Strauss has a BA in History and is a United States Coast Guard veteran. He is a qualified expert witness in the courts in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Virginia and is a faculty member at SLIG, GRIP, and IGHR where he is the Military Course Coordinator. Additionally, he is involved with both Civil War and Mexican War reenacting for more than 25 years.

Kelly R. Summers, AG

Kelly Summers, Accredited Genealogist® has taught Family History at Brigham Young University for more than 14 years. She also teaches online Genealogy courses at Salt Lake Community College.Kelly has four premier genealogical credentials through the International Commission for the Accreditation of Professional Genealogist (ICAPGen) demonstrating genealogical research expertise is in U.S. Midwestern & U.S. Pacific, Mexico, and Spain. Kelly is also an experienced researcher in Latin America, Southwest Europe, Scandinavia, & Asia. Kelly's research interests lie in kinship research in primary source records and rural community reconstruction.

Kelly currently serves as the Utah Genealogical Association (UGA) President. She received the UGA Distinguished Service Award during her tenure. Kelly served for more than 10 years as the Testing Committee Chair for the International Commission for the Accreditation of Professional Genealogists (ICAPGen). Kelly is a member of the Association of Professional Genealogists (APG). Kelly was the SLIG 2020 Course Coordinator for Chinese Genealogy: Research Methods & Sources. She will be the Course Coordinator for this Chinese Genealogy course virtually in the Fall of 2021.

Jeffrey M. Svare, AG

Jeff was born in St. Paul, Minnesota and raised in Fargo, North Dakota in a household filled with immigrants and the children of immigrants. He moved to Salt Lake City, Utah in 1976, and currently resides in West Bountiful, Utah. He has a BA in History and is an Accredited Genealogist with ICAPGen in Norway research. He began working for FamilySearch in 1987, and has been involved in records acquisitions in Asia, the Pacific, Australia, New Zealand, Africa, Europe, and Scandinavia. Jeff has taught classes at the Family History Library, served as instructor and course coordinator for the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy, and presented at RootsTech. Currently he is the Historical Records Content Manager for the FamilySearch Research Wiki.

D. Joshua Taylor, MA, MLS

D. Joshua Taylor, MA, MLS, is a nationally known and recognized genealogist. Passionate about the diverse and dynamic field of family history, Joshua is the President of the New York Genealogical & Biographical Society (NYG&B), an organization dedicated to preserving the stories of all New Yorkers. Previously, Joshua volunteered in leadership positions for the Federation of Genealogical Societies and other organizations. In 2017, Joshua was named as one of Library Journal’s Movers and Shakers. A popular author and speaker, Joshua has been a coordinator for courses at the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy (SLIG) and the Genealogical Research Institute of Pittsburgh (GRIP) and is the recipient of RootsTech’s Distinguished Presenter Award. He holds an MLS (Archival Management) and an MA (History) from Simmons College and has been a featured genealogist on Who Do You Think You Are? and can be seen taking America through their past as a host on the popular PBS series Genealogy Roadshow. Joshua resides in New York City.

Tristan L. Tolman, AG

Tristan L. Tolman, AG®, is a professional genealogist, author, editor, and publisher. She has a bachelor's degree in Family History and Genealogy from Brigham Young University and received her accreditation in genealogy research in the U.S. Mid-Atlantic States through the International Commission for the Accreditation of Professional Genealogists (ICAPGen). Tristan has been actively involved in the genealogical field for over twenty years. She loves working with clients and specializes in U.S. genealogical research, writing personal and family histories, and preparing genealogical information for publication. She is also the lead genealogist for the award-winning television series, Relative Race. Tristan currently serves as the second vice president of the Utah Genealogical Association and has served on the ICAPGen Board and the Nominations Committee of the Association of Professional Genealogists. She has written curriculum for the Family History degree programs at BYU-Idaho and BYU-Provo and was co-editor of Becoming an Excellent Genealogist: Essays on Professional Research Skills (2012). She is a member in good standing of ICAPGen, the National Genealogical Society, and the Association of Professional Genealogists.

Rich Venezia

Rich Venezia is a New Jersey native who now calls Philadelphia home. He founded Rich Roots Genealogy in 2013. He was a member of the research team of Genealogy Roadshow (PBS) for two seasons, and also consulted on Follow Your Past(Travel Channel). He is an expert in the research of 20th-century immigrant ancestors, especially underutilized record sources and federal records. He also specializes in Italian and Irish research. Additionally, he assists clients with dual citizenship applications for Ireland and Italy, and is a proud Italian dual citizen. He holds a Certificate in Genealogical Research from Boston University. He lectures nationwide, and spoke about "How to Grow Empathy From Uncovering Your Roots" at TEDx Pittsburgh 2017.

Katherine R. Willson

Katherine R. Willson of Dexter, Michigan is an engaging and dynamic genealogy lecturer at local, regional, and national conferences such as RootsTech, theNational Genealogical Society, and the Federation of Genealogical Societies. Her board positions have included founder and past president of the Virtual Genealogical Association, past President of the Michigan Genealogical Council, and past member of the Association of Professional Genealogist Board of Directors. Katherine is an educator teaching beginning, intermediate, and advanced genealogy classes in Michigan since 2001, and she works full-time as a professional researcher for private clients. Her passion for genealogy combined with practical and creative strategies keeps Katherine’s audience fully engaged in her energetic and entertaining presentations. Participants leave with the tools necessary to do their own research, as well as the inspiration to do it!

Paul Woodbury, MEd

Paul Woodbury first developed an interest in genealogy when his grandparents gave him a family history binder for his eighth birthday. In 2006, he was introduced to genetic genealogy through a television special on African American research. The possibilities of this new and developing fieldcaptured his imagination,renewed his fascination for family history and led to his interest and career in the field.

Paul is a graduate of Brigham Young University where he studied genetics and family history. He also has a masters degree in instructional design and educational technology from the University of Utah. Through his education and client research experience, he has developed specialties in DNA, French, Spanish, and Scandinavian research. Over the past several years, he has offered hundreds of classes, workshops and lectures on research topics relating to these areas. Currently he works as a Genetic Genealogy Specialist for Legacy Tree Genealogists. In addition to genealogy, Paul enjoys singing, skiing, hiking and balloon twisting. He and his family reside In Provo, Utah.