Thursday, February 9, 2012

2012 APG PMC at Salt Lake City

Wednesday, February 1, the Association of Professional Genealogists hosted their Professional Management Conference in Salt Lake City. This was a 1-day event with sessions geared toward issues of the professional genealogist. I attended this event.

"Developing Advanced Research Plans While Staying on Track in a Modern World" was the single morning session led by J. Mark Lowe. He's one of my favorite speakers. I'd wait in line just to see him read the back of a cereal box because I know he will make it informative and funny. Mark discussed research concepts and methods. It was a good session to get me centered again on the research process.

Then there was a luncheon with round table topics. I sat at the "social media" table hosted by Paula Stuart-Warren. We talked on topic, we talked off topic, we networked and more. It was a good lunch and I met some new people. Jay Verkler, former CEO of FamilySearch also gave a little talk. He's always good.

After lunch, there were two tracks of sessions from which to choose. I attended "Understanding U.S. Native American Research" led by Paula Stuart-Warren. Admittedly, I went for my own personal benefit rather than professional gain. I want to do the best research on my own Chickasaw history. Paula knows her stuff. She shared great advice on where to look. The takeaways were to look in "regular" records, not just special Indian ones, know the tribe, know the tribe's history, study the whole family and more. Paula also left us with a fabulous syllabus filled with Native American guides, books and resources.

Unfortunately, I didn't attend the last two sessions of the PMC because I wasn't feeling too well. I ended up going back to my hotel room to rest up.

Even with the shortened day, I felt like this Salt Lake PMC was the best I'd ever attended (out of 3). The subjects were relevant, the content was quality and APG is coming around to the rest of the research world with their acceptance of live social media use during sessions.

Overall I was very pleased with this APG PMC. My thanks go out to the presenters and the APG board for their hard work. I hope both APG members and non-members alike consider attending future professional management conferences in the future.

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