Rootstech. Who is it for Anyway?

Rootstech. Who is it for Anyway?

Finally recovering and processing Rootstech 2018 and time to write my summary. After reading various comments and blogs about the conference, mainly people confirming (after seeing pictures of the crowds), that they would never attend Rootstech and complaints about the lines getting into classrooms, etc. I realized that there is some confusion on who Rootstech is really for. Rootstech's organizer's FamilySearch, know that serious genealogists, whether they are professionals or hobbyists, are still going to go to institutes, attend other genealogy conferences, watch webinars, etc. regardless of what happens or doesn't happen at Rootstech. While Rootstech provides some classes that would appeal to the experienced researcher, you are not the target audience - they welcome you and want you to attend of course, but your are not the target audience. I have attended every Rootstech from the beginning, lots of bumps, starts and stops along the way, but overall I have always been excited Continue reading

Top 7 Insider Tips & Secrets to Survive and Thrive at Rootstech

Top 7 Insider Tips & Secrets to Survive and Thrive at Rootstech

Rootstech is the BIGGEST Family History Conference of its kind in the World. Officials are estimating attendance to Rootstech being held in Salt Lake City, Utah next week to be around 25,000 - with more 50,000 tuning in from around the world with live-streaming sessions. There is so much to see, with keynote headliners like Olympic Gold Medal Skater and sports commentator Scott Hamilton, PBS series' Finding Your Roots host Henry Louis Gates Jr., Social Media's Humans of New York Brandon Stanton and Mexican pop-rock singer, Natalia Lafourcade are all set to light up the stage. Over 300 classes and labs geared for everyone from very beginner (just-dipping-your-toes-in), to intermediate. More than 200 exhibitors with products that will be sure to delight any lovers of genealogy and family history. With SO much going on, it is easy to get overwhelmed. I've attended every Rootstech conference from the beginning, I served for years as an official Rootstech Amabassador and this will Continue reading

Rootstech 2017 Keynote Speakers Review

Rootstech 2017 Keynote Speakers Review

Having attended all 7 Rootstech, I can say with some authority, that this year's Rootstech was the best. Since the world's largest family history conference is jammed pack with so much to talk about, I'm going to break my review into a series of posts. Today's topic is the Rootstech keynote speakers. Rootstech Innovator Summit was keynoted by Liz Wiseman, a leadership expert and strategist, best selling author and Steve Rockwood, CEO of FamilySearch. [Click on photos for links to view their presentations.] My takeaway from Liz's presentation was the value of being a Rookie. In professional genealogy, being a rookie is not something most aspired to, as it takes years and years of experience, study and hard work to gain a strong understanding and background to tackle tough research problems. I have noticed over the years that it can be easy to slip into a groove of complacency, thinking you know a subject and you stop digging deeper because you think you hit the depth of Continue reading

Rootstech 2015 and Is It Worth Attending Again?

Rootstech 2015 and Is It Worth Attending Again?

Rootstech 2015 is over and definitely one for the record books. I wanted to take some time before posting,  as I definitely needed the space to process it all. After all, over 23,000 people were in attendance, and FGS Conference was also being held in conjunction, which meant lots of classes, lots of genealogists, lots of vendors, and lots and lots of people. FamilySearch really pulled out all of the stops with outstanding keynotes from Laura Bush and her daughter Jenna, writer and cousin to all A.J. Jacobs and the innovator Tan Le. Genealogy's top execs from FamilySearch's CEO Dennis Brimhall, My Heritage's  Mkle Mallin and Find My Past's D. Josh Taylor also spoke. Icing on the top for me was to have had Donny Osmond finally sing to me, while my daughter was thrilled to have had David Archuleta sing to her. Comedy troupe, Studio C also showed up on stage, which my husband particularly enjoyed. Rootstech was huge! For those who regularly attend national conferences this came Continue reading

Learn From Other Tribes and Drink Upstream

Learn From Other Tribes and Drink Upstream

There is a saying "don't drink downstream" and if you've ever spent any time outdoors you know why. When you want good information, you need to go to the source. I wanted to find out what "real" writers where doing,  so what did I do? I joined a professional writer's online group. It's called Tribe Writers. I have just started and I'm not much into the community sharing part, but I want to glean what I can from this course. Results to be shared later. Next, I attended the 2014 Build Your Blog Conference, a professional bloggers conference. Taught by bloggers who have page views in the millions, who shared their expertise and knowledge on how to create a better blog. Do I want to become a full-time professional blogger? No. But, I do want to glean ideas on how to maximize the time I do spend blogging and to create a better blog. Was it worthwhile? Yes, I did learn a lot. Enough to keep me busy tweaking, adjusting, and learning how to implement what I learned for the rest of the Continue reading

My Private Family History Conference

My Private Family History Conference

Photo By: Valerie S. ElkinsRight now, FGS conference is going on in Birmingham, AL and many of my fellow genealogists are attending. Unfortunately, I was not able to attend this year. Hopefully, next year I will be there, especially since it is in Fort Wayne, IN. Hello Allen County Public Library!Instead of pouting, feeling sorry for myself, I decided to create my own private family history conference, attendee of 1.After a busy summer, this is the perfect time to regroup and reorganize my  office. What better way to do this while listening to some of my genealogy CDs, attend virtual webinars and catalog my genealogy reference holdings?This morning while listening to the inspiring Judy G. Russell CG, on Legacy's webinar presentations: Building a Family From Circumstantial Evidence, I organized by software and program CD's. This afternoon, I will be attending Ancestry's live webinar with Anne Mitchell's presentation on Tips on How to Organize if You Haven't Done it for Years, which is Continue reading