I got my start in family history research back in 1999, when I heard about a new website called Ancestry.com. I searched for a couple older family names, and within an hour I was connected back to the 1800's. I was hooked and have been doing it ever since. It's especially exciting to uncover the details and stories of who they were and what they did.
Through the course of my research, I've discovered that my ancestors have been involved in every major war in America's history. My discovery of six of my direct ancestors' involvement in the Civil War sparked an interest in their military history and uncovering whatever records I can find for them. I've spent countless hours in the National Archives with their records, as well as hundreds of other soldiers' records in the process.
2011-2012 Professional Genealogy Study Group 8 (ProGen8). An 18 month online course devoted to improving professional standards in both research and business practices.
March 2017 North Hills Genealogists Spring Conference
April 2017 Ohio Genealogy Society Conference
June 2017 Genealogical Research Institute of Pittsburgh (GRIP), "Confusion to Conclusion: Writing Genealogical Proof Arguments"
October 2017 Ohio Genealogy Society Fall Seminar
Fall 2017 Boston University, Genealogical Research Certificate Program. A master's level course designed to reinforce professional standards in both genealogical research and writing.
March 2019 North Hills Genealogists Spring Conference-- Blaine Bettinger-- DNA and Genetic Genealogy
May 2018-May 2019 Professional Genealogy Study Group 38 (ProGen38). A twelve month online course devoted to improving professional standards in both genealogical research and business practices. (Yes, I took the course twice!)
July 2019 The Genealogical Institute on Federal Records (Gen Fed), a week long, intensive institute held at the National Archives, and is designed to educate attendees about the holdings held there.
December 2019 National Genealogical Society's Continuing Education Course: "The War of 1812." A comprehensive overview of the War of 1812 and the genealogical records that resulted.
May 2020 National Genealogy Society's Continuing Education Course: "African American Roots: A Historical Perspective"
July 2021 The Genealogical Research Institute of Pittsburgh (GRIP) "Essential Tools and Strategies for African American Research"
July 2022 The Genealogical Research Institute of Pittsburgh (GRIP) "Advanced DNA Evidence"
Ongoing Researcher for the PBS television show "Finding Your Roots"
Ongoing Countless hours spent at the National Archives in Washington DC, working with the records themselves
Affiliations and memberships
Member, National Genealogy Society
Member, Association of Professional Genealogists
Former Vice President and current member, Portage County (Ohio) Genealogy Society
Trustee and volunteer, Portage County (Ohio) Historical Society