Recent Blog Posts

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The Value of Open Public Records
Records and Repositories
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MGC's NERGC Panel on Open Records: Citizens Can Make a Difference
General Legislation
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How many deaths before the SSDI gets updated again?
Legislation Federal
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Dr. Rebecca Hanson-Richardson, EdM, MA, PhD

Richardson PhotoRebecca Hanson Richardson, Ed.M., M.A., Ph.D., is a clinical psychologist whose ancestors included Danish immigrants to Kansas (both "happy" and "sad" Danes), 17th century English émigrés, and Welsh combatants in the Revolutionary War. She studied developmental psychology at Harvard and Clark universities, and specializes in cognitive behavioral therapies in her work at the University of Massachusetts Medical School and Worcester State Hospital. She is particularly interested in integrating acceptance and mindfulness practices into traditional, change-oriented techniques in clinical practice. Over the years, she has gained historical perspective (and many amazing stories) from her husband, Harold Richardson, an historian who is associated with several historical organizations, and who is an elected member of the American Antiquarian Society in Worcester.


8:45-9:15 "The Brick Walls In Our Minds"

 Mary Ellen Grogan

trimmedGroganMary Ellen Grogan is a professional genealogist living in Boston who specializes in Massachusetts and Irish genealogical and historical records. Mary Ellen first researched in Dublin archives in 1984. (Her Reader's Card for the National Library of Ireland is number 151.) She has both participated in and led research tours in Ireland. A teacher by nature, Mary Ellen enjoys sharing her knowledge and giving others the opportunity to be successful in their research.


 9:30-10:20 "MGC Panel Discussion on Legislative Issues"


1:30-3:30 "Griffiths Valuation Workshop"

Barbara Mathews, CG

Barbara Matthews iphone

Barbara J. Mathews, CG, is a professional lineage genealogist, genealogical editor and writer. She is a trustee of the non-profit BCG Education Fund, trustee of the Board for Certification of Genealogists, and past president of the Massachusetts Genealogical Council. Barbara specializes in colonial Connecticut and Massachusetts.


 9:30-10:20 "MGC Panel Discussion on Legislative Issues"

Melinde Lutz Byrne, CG, FASG

Melinde Lutz Byrne-HeadshotMelinde Lutz Byrne, CG, FASG, is co-editor of the NGS Quarterly and Director of the Genealogical Research Certificate Program at Boston University. She is a cultural anthropologist and archivist by training and worked for Harvard's Tozzer Anthropological Library. Melinde has published extensively in peer-reviewed journals. In 1993 a book she edited won several awards, including the Donald Lines Jacobus Award of Excellence. She has been an officer in state, regional, and national genealogical societies and has been Vice President of MGC. She currently serves as President of the American Society of Genealogists.


 9:30-10:20 "MGC Panel Discussion on Legislative Issues"

Sharon Sergeant


 9:30-10:20 "MGC Panel Discussion on Legislative Issues"

 Polly FitzGerald Kimmitt, CG

KimmittPolly FitzGerald Kimmitt, CG has been an associate of the Board for Certification of Genealogists (BCG) since 2009. A case worker at the American History Company, working under contract for the US Army, she is responsible for locating families of servicemen lost in previous conflicts. She is currently president of the Massachusetts Genealogical Council (MGC) and a director of the Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS). She served as president of the New England Chapter of APG (2009). From 2007 to 2009, she was regent of the Col. Timothy Bigelow Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) in Worcester. Her specialization is Massachusetts, with focus on immigration and migration. She can be reached through her website at


 9:30-10:20 "MGC Panel Discussion on Legislative Issues"

Philip Hermann

Hermann1Philip Hermann, MEd, MS, is a former engineer, biology teacher, award winning photographer and artist.

He received a certificate in Genealogical Research from Boston University Center for Professional Education and is a teacher of genealogy in several communities in Massachusetts.

He is Co-Director of Programs for the Massachusetts Genealogical Council and has recently written in the NEHGS Weekly Genealogist about the 1940 census.

He is also owner of his own genealogy research business.


9:30-10:20 "Preserving Your Ethnic Records Before It’s Too Late"

 Margaret Sullivan

MargaretSullivanphotoMargaret R. Sullivan is Records Manager & Archivist the Boston Police Department and Vice-President of TIARA. She has written on police history for local and national publications. Her independent research focuses on officers killed in the line of duty, early women police, and 19th century African American officers.


9:30-10:20 "1st Generation Irish"

Claire V. Brisson-Banks, MLIS, AG

image002Claire Brisson-Banks, BS, MLIS, AG®, author of "The Social Media Guide for Ancestral Research: Using Web 2.0 Strategies", accredited in England and Mountain States, a US, Canada, Scotland and Web 2.0 technology researcher. Timeless Genealogies' owner and a British Consultant and Technology Specialist for the Family History Library, SLC, UT.


9:30-10:20 "Scottish Research Strategies"

10:40-11:30 "Quest for Your Ancestors"

Marian Pierre-Louis

MarianPLMarian Pierre-Louis is genealogical writer and speaker who specializes in southern New England research. She frequently speaks at conferences, societies and libraries on New England topics including house history research, African American research and brick walls. She is a regular guest presenter on the Legacy Family Tree webinar series. She is also the author of the Marian's Roots and Rambles blog.


9:30-10:20 "Finding African-Americans in Land and Probate Records"

Karen Mauer Green, CG

Green PicKaren Mauer Green, CG, is an editor, author, lecturer, and professional genealogist, currently employed as coeditor of The New York Genealogical and Biographical Record. She has served on the boards of APG (Director; Regional Vice President) and FGS (Director; Vice President of Administration; National Conference Chair, 1997 FGS Dallas).


9:30-11:30 "Advanced Genealogical Methods Workshop

 Loretto "Lou" Szucs, FUGA

Lou Szucs

 Loretto Dennis ("Lou") Szucs, FUGA, holds a degree in history, and has been involved in genealogical research, teaching, lecturing, and publishing for more than thirty years. Previously employed by the National Archives, she is currently executive editor and vice president of community relations for, Inc.. She has served on many archives and genealogical boards, and was founding secretary of the Federation of Genealogical Societies. Currently, she serves as a director on the Board of the Federation of Genealogical Societies. 


10:40-11:30 "They Became Americans: Finding Ethnic Origins" 


12:30-1:15 "Mysteries, Myths and Miracles"


2:40-3:30 "Hidden Treasures at"

Lisa Alzo

Alzo photoLisa Alzo, an avid genealogist for 22 years, Lisa currently teaches online genealogy courses for Family Tree University and the National Institute for Genealogical Studies.


10:40-11:30 "Diseases, Disasters & Distress: Bad for Your Ancestors, Good for your Genealogical Research"


1:30-2:20 "Demystifying Eastern European Research"

Marie Daly

Marie daly photo

Marie Daly is the Library Director at the New England Historic Genealogical Society, where she has worked since 1987. She was the founding president of TIARA (the Irish Ancestral Research Association), and has been researching Irish genealogy since 1976. She has written numerous articles and given many presentations on Irish genealogy, public health, land research, and Prince Edward Island research.


10:40-11:30 "A Virtual Way to Tipperary: Irish Online Resources"

Dave Lambert

Lambert PicTRACK 5

10:40-11:30 "Research Native Americans in 17th-21st c. Mass: Case Study, Punkapoag Indians"

Meredith Hoffman

Hoffman PicMeredith Hoffman is a professional genealogist, lecturer, and writer who specializes in researching 19th/early 20th century Jewish immigrant ancestors. She holds degrees in Linguistics from UC-Berkeley and is a graduate of the Boston University Genealogical Research Program and IGHR. She is Syllabus Chair for the New England Regional Genealogical Conference, Publicity Chair of the Jewish Genealogy Society of Greater Boston, and co-editor of the Success! Stories webzine on


1:30-2:20 "How to Find Your Jewish Great-Grandparents… even though you know it's impossible"

Shellee Morehead, PhD

ShelleeAMoreheadPHOTOShellee Morehead, has a PhD in Evolutionary Ecology. She researches, writes and lectures on a variety of genealogy topics. Her specialties include Italian immigrant families, Rhode Island research and genetic genealogy. She has recently lectured at NERGC, the OGS Conference and at BYU's Conference on Genealogy and Family History.


1:30-2:20 "Clusters and Chains for Italian Genealogical Success"

Alice Kane

aKanepic2Chinese-American native Bostonian Alice Kane worked for the Boston Public Library before becoming a professional genealogist and researcher. Besides client and other projects utilizing many Boston-area repositories, she is the moderator of the Hyde Park Genealogy Club, and Treasurer of the New England Chapter of the Association of Professional Genealogists.


1:30-2:20 "They Came for Gold and Stayed: Into to Chinese-American Genealogy"

 Laura Prescott

LauraPrescott 300dpiLaura G. Prescott is a professional researcher, writer, and speaker. She brings leading-edge methods to her research and presentations. Her specialties include locating records online, manuscript collections, and technology, especially for Mac users. She is past president of APG, genealogist for the Nickerson Family Association, and a consultant at More at


1:30-2:20 "Locate the Origins of Your Immigrant Ancestors on Fold3"

2:40-3:30 "Researching Your Immigrant Ancestors in Academic Archives"

 Lilly Cleveland

Lilly ClevelandLilly Cleveland is a new Genealogist. Her research includes Colonial era, Mayflower and California Gold Rush period. Lilly is a new member at APG, NEHGS, NGS, MCG and graduated from the Boston University Research Program in Genealogy (2011). She is enthralled with the ancestor hunt and building a story from fragments of information. Lilly published "Following my Itinerant Minister Through Cyberspace" with, Expert Series. You can visit her web at


2:40-3:30 "Tracing My Swiss-German Ancestor Anna Ziersch Through NY, Boston & Deham"

 Mary Tedesco

Pic Mary Tedesco

Mary Tedesco specializes in Italian-American genealogical research.  She speaks fluent Italian and travels often to Italy where she visits family and does research.  Mary holds a Certificate in Genealogical Research from Boston University's Center for Professional Education and is the Co-Director of Programs of the Massachusetts Genealogical Council. She is also a member of APG, TIARA, the DAR, NGS, NEHGS, and Maine Historical Society.  Her favorite destination on Friday afternoons (besides Good Harbor Beach in Gloucester) is Mass Vital Records!


2:40-3:30 "Andiamo in Italia!"

Michael Maglio

Maglio PhotoMike Maglio is a professional genealogist and the owner of Origin Hunters genealogy services. He has 25 years of experience researching family history. Mike specializes in New England ancestry, Genetic Genealogy and consulting.


2:40-3:30 "Armenian-American: Diaspora, Migration & Genealogy"