Monthly Archives: January 2006

Speakers and Societies: Singing the Duet

It was in September 2003 and I was in Orlando at the Federation of Genealogical Societies Conference when I had one of those moments when I wished I was twins. I was scheduled to be in one place, and wanted to be in a lecture by Rhonda McLure entitled, “Speakers and Societies: Bridging the Communication Gap”. My twin never materialized but someone who was there took time to tell me about it.

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Return of the Genealogist in Residence

Ken Aitken profile

The Genealogist in Residence idea can also be used as a promotion tool by a speaker. Consider this scenario

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SpeakerNet News

Take a look on the bottom of the right hand column under Useful Links for a new link, SpeakerNet News. Check them out. Take a look at the products offered too. If teaching/lecturing genealogy is your business, you will find lots of ideas here.

Back of the Room Sales


Some genealogical speakers bring products to sell when they speak. There are a few challenges. They have to sort out local sales taxes and things like that. But it can prove a lucrative revenue stream especially if the products are your own. One speaker who does this is Dr. Penny Christiansen, a colleague at the National Institute for Genealogical Studies. Penny has written umpteen books on genealogy topics, published by Heritage Productions in Toronto.

Books are not the only products offered by speakers. I have seen CD-ROMS, DVDs, and even T-Shirts!

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Genealogical Speakers Guild

This is an interesting group. An assemblage of some of the most talented speakers in genealogy in North America who band together to reach the following objectives:

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Short Case Studies

While looking for something else on the web I stumbled on an interesting site regarding the use of short case studies or case histories for promotional use. I began to wonder if the tips on writing them could help us fine tune our case studies for classroom and workshop use. Take a look at this item from Wordbiz Report and see if you can use the tips in this and linked articles to write a simple, short case study based on one of your own research bluders, challeges or problems. Leave the solution open, posing some sort of open-ended questions. Remember, short case studies bear a resemblance to those word problems we got in arithmatic class in 5th grade.
Regular readers will note I am getting you to learn by doing! Like a good facilitator, I hope.

Genealogist in Residence

My local public library has a “writer in residence” for 6 months every other year. They also have a “Critic in Residence” at the library art gallery. These individuals meet with local writers and artists and coach them in improving their literary or artistic work. The library pays them to do a certain number of educational programs, and to have “office hours” for writers or artists to come in and discuss their work.

Would you like to be a “genealogist in residence” at a library near you? Its a new idea and you may not sell them on a month, let alone 6 months, but to the right person they might just pay a professional genealogist to teach and consult with patrons for a week.

Go and discuss it with your librarian and report back.