The Washington DC FGS Conference

Written by: Pamela Loos-Noji, DAR Staff Genalogist
September 12, 2019

Your DAR Genealogy Team was excited that the Federation of Genealogical Societies’ 2019 National Conference was held right here in Washington, D.C., this year! As far as we know, none of the large genealogy conferences have ever been held in the District, so this was a great opportunity for DAR to send several of our newest staff members, along with a few longtime hands, to work at the booth and to attend lectures.  In total, 12 members of our staff benefitted from the conference: Lynne Brooke, Brendon Burns, Will Campbell, Karen Janczy, Jennifer Johnson, Rebecca Moore, Audra Sombke, Austin Spencer, Amanda Taylor, Lauren Turco, Mark Voltaire and me.  There were many positive reviews about the lectures that staffers attended and the value derived from participating in this professional summit.

The most important headline from the conference was the announcement that the Federation of Genealogical Societies and the National Genealogical Society are planning to merge. The two organizations will form one consolidated group that will continue to operate as the National Genealogical Society. 

Everyone enjoyed meeting and talking to people who came by the DAR table and telling them about our unique genealogical resources.   We had the help of some lovely local volunteers to spread the word about DAR.  From D.C. there were Marcia Guzauskas, D.C. State Regent, and Janet McFarland; and from Maryland, Therese Capal and Susan Sorlis joined us.  One of the lucky winners of our “DARopoly” raffle prize, Joyce Campbell from Andrew Carruthers Chapter, was so excited that she texted chapter members back in Austin, Texas, and they have already arranged a meet-up to play the game together!

As an added benefit of the conference, we were delighted to welcome two groups of attendees to the DAR Library for a half-day of guided research the day before the formal conference began.  I had the privilege of presenting “A D.C. Genealogical Gem: the DAR Library” to the conference attendees.  More than 50 people attended the session and were extremely interested in DAR and our resources.  Library staff reported that many conference goers even brought their new skills with them to the library to work on their research.

We all agreed that the four days of the conference were a worthwhile experience to promote DAR and its resources, as well as to learn new developments in professional genealogical advancements.

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