Monday, October 30, 2017

Rich Venezia to Keynote SLIG 2018 Plenary Session

Rich Venezia, in keeping with this year's theme, will present Common Threads: Weaving Our Ancestral Tapestries at the Plenary Session, Monday evening, January 22. All SLIG participants and instructors are invited; a RSVP is requested.

Rich Venezia
Aside from his uninhibited and infectious laugh, Rich has received renown in genealogical circles for his Tedx Pittsburgh Talk, "How to Grow Empathy From Uncovering Your Roots" and experience as a member of the research team for two seasons of the PBS show, Genealogy Roadshow.  He is also a popular speaker for conferences and groups.

Venezia founded his own company, Rich Roots Genealogy, in 2013. In 2015, he received his Certificate in Genealogical Research from Boston University.  Rich has helped clients find their roots in Italy, Ireland, Lithuania, Canada, England, Scotland, Wales, Prussia, St. Kitts, Sint Eustatius, France, Germany, The Netherlands, and the United States.  His specialty is 20th century immigrant ancestry and immigration records.

Join us for SLIG 2018 fun with Rich Venezia!

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Behind the SLIG Scenes: J. Paul Hawthorne

SLIG is amazing, isn't it? The instructors and the students are the magic--but who sets up the magic?  The magical SLIG committee, that's who!  Before SLIG 2018 happens, this blog will feature each dynamic member of the committee.

J. Paul Hawthorne is a familiar face to to those who follow him on Facebook, Instagam, and Twitter. His gentle humor often features hats, masks, and digital appendages. Paul jumped at the chance when asked to join the committee as the Social Media Marketing Coordinator for SLIG in 2016.

Named for his paternal grandfather, James Boardman Hawthorne and his father, Paul Hawthorne, he started adding the “J” before his middle name when he joined the family tractor business in Southern California.

Paul says he enjoys the comradery between the committee members, the leadership of the Director, Peg Ivanyo, and the freedom within a framework that fits his personality.

His favorite SLIG memory is as a "first-timer." Paul shares that at his first Welcome Reception, he was overwhelmed. He not only saw all his genealogy heroes, but about half of the students there were actually teachers that he had learned from at conferences! He was intimidated, but he “stepped up to the plate and did his best”.

Paul likes a deep blue color because it is like his thoughts. These same thoughts were responsible for the unique and imaginative #mycolorfulancestry color coded Excel family tree charts that went viral last year. Keep on thinking, Paul! 

Until next time, the next committee member, and the next Behind the Scenes SLIG 2018 magic! 

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

SLIG 2018 Theme: Ancestral Tapestries

The Fruit and Vegetable Market
designed by Zeger Jacob van Helmont and Augustin Coppens
woven by Urbanus Leyniers; Wikimedia Commons
Tapestries have been used for centuries to tell stories, warm or decorate walls, and celebrate special occasions. 

They are uniquely woven with solid vertical (warp) yarns that don’t show and horizontal, non-continuous (weft) yarns creating the pattern in a way that allows the final design to show on both sides. One can only begin to imagine the detailed effort required to manage the multiple colors woven into the tapestry that creates each part of the story.  

I somehow imagine my heritage being much like a tapestry -- woven of the bits and pieces, successes and failures, special events and challenges, celebrations and cultural traditions from each of my ancestor’s lives. While my personal tapestry may be unique, just like the market scene shown above it naturally shares common threads with many others.

This theme, Ancestral Tapestries, will be woven throughout SLIG 2018 into keynote addresses, special events, contests, and other activities.  While it is but a backdrop to the academic program we come to attend, it will hopefully provide occasional moments to celebrate, study, and explore the threads we have in common, as well as the unique heritages from which we descend.

I look forward to seeing you at SLIG!

Peg Ivanyo, director

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

SLIG Announces 2018 Banquet Keynote Speaker

We are pleased to announce that John Colletta, Ph.D., FUGA, popular genealogical speaker, will be the keynote speaker for the SLIG 2018 banquet. He will present "Deceptive Threads in the Tapestry: The Words of Our Ancestors' English."

"Dr. Colletta is a highly engaging speaker. I look forward to hearing him explore the words that weave our ancestral tapestries together," stated Peg A. Ivanyo, SLIG Director.

The completion banquet is set to begin at 7:00 pm on Friday, January 26th, 2018. The banquet will announce contest winners and the annual UGA awards--including the coveted Silver Tray Award and announcement of the 2016 FUGA (Fellow of UGA)--with a catered meal, and the keynote address.

The banquet will be preceded by a no-host bar and networking social. Tickets are required to attend. The banquet ticket is included with SLIG tuition (RSVP required); guest tickets are available for an additional fee.

See you there!