Jewish Genealogical Society of Illinois to hold DNA conference for beginners and more experienced

 
Martin Fischer
Updated 4/15/2019 4:37 PM
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  • Gil Bardige believes DNA results can be a valuable tool in genealogical research as it generates clues to help people confirm relationships. He and Lara Diamond will speak at the June 2 DNA conference in Northbrook, Ill.Gil Bardage

    Gil Bardige believes DNA results can be a valuable tool in genealogical research as it generates clues to help people confirm relationships. He and Lara Diamond will speak at the June 2 DNA conference in Northbrook, Ill.Gil Bardage

"DNA: Tests, Tools and Tales" is the theme of the Jewish Genealogical Society of Illinois' one-day conference on Sunday, June 2, 2019, at Temple Beth-El, 3610 Dundee Road, Northbrook, Ill. This special event will offer two tracks--one for beginners and one for more experienced users of genealogical genetic testing.

The conference will feature talks by Lara Diamond and Gil Bardige, two experts in using and understanding DNA analyses for family history purposes.

Conference attendees will have chances to win door prizes from FamilyTreeDNA and MyHeritage.

Schedule: Sign-in, networking, and the JGSI genealogy help desk and research library will be available from 8:30 to 10 a.m. June 2.

From 10 to 11:45 a.m. attendees will have a choice between a beginner track presentation called "Introduction to Genetic Genealogy: Y-DNA, mtDNA and Autosomal DNA--The Basics and Next Steps" and an intermediate/advanced track presentation called "Leveraging the Power of GedMatch."

Lunch will be available from noon to 1:15 p.m. with short "Kvell and Tell" presentations about JGSI members' experiences using DNA testing.

From 1:15 to 2:30 p.m., attendees will chose between a beginner track presentation called "Introduction to Genetic Genealogy: Working with your DNA Results" and an intermediate/advanced track presentation called "Using Y-DNA and mtDNA: Genetic Genealogy as an Innovative Tool in Your Research."

From 2:40 to 3:45 p.m., attendees will chose between a beginner track mentoring session and an intermediate/advanced track presentation called "Autosomal DNA Tools and Techniques: Beyond GedMatch."

Lara Diamond has been researching her family for 25 years, starting as a middle school student. She has traced multiple generations of all branches of her family back to Europe using Russian Empire-era and Austro-Hungarian Empire records. Most of her research is in modern-day Ukraine, with a smattering of Belarus and Poland.

Lara is president of the Jewish Genealogy Society of Maryland, leads JewishGen's Subcarpathian SIG, and is on the board of directors of JewishGen's Ukraine SIG. She also runs multiple district- and town-focused projects to collect documentation to assist those researching ancestors from common towns. She blogs about DNA and her Eastern European research at larasgenealogy.blogspot.com.

Gil Bardige has been working on his genealogy since 1979 and now has nearly 1,400 people on his family tree including three branches traced back to his 5th-great-grandfathers born about 1740. His families arrived in Chicago in the early 20th century and were involved in founding Knesses Israel Nusach Sfard (K.I.N.S.), one of the oldest synagogues on the West Side of Chicago.

A member of the Columbus Jewish Historical Society in Ohio, Gil has spoken at a number of local events and international conferences and is a firm believer that DNA results can be a valuable tool in genealogical research as it generates clues to help people confirm relationships. Most recently he has managed the mentoring program for IAJGS at their international Jewish genealogy conferences, allowing people to get one-on-one tutoring to help break through brick walls.

For the last 10+ years Gil has expanded his knowledge of genetic genealogy, testing at each of the major DNA companies and currently manages three Y-DNA projects at FamilyTreeDNA as a volunteer administrator. He loves to help people manage their expectations and remove confusion about DNA results, whether it's Y-DNA, mtDNA or autosomal DNA (from the three major testing labs, FTDNA, Ancestry or 23andMe).

Before May 20, early registration fees are $45 for JGSI members, $50 for non-members and $25 for students. After May 20, the fees are $10 higher. Members of any IAJGS-affiliated society may attend the conference at the JGSI member rate.

For more information and to register, go to https://www.jgsi.org/event-3360053.

The Jewish Genealogical Society of Illinois is a non-profit organization dedicated to helping members collect, preserve, and perpetuate the records and history of their ancestors. JGSI is a resource for the worldwide Jewish community to research their Chicago-area roots.

The JGSI motto is "Members Helping Members Since 1981." The group has more than 300 members.

Monthly meetings feature informative speakers as well as access to an 800-volume genealogy research library and expert volunteer genealogy help desk. Members also have access to useful and informative online family history research resources, including a members forum, more than 40 video recordings of past speakers' presentations, the free searchable JGSI Jewish Chicago Database, monthly JGSI E-News, quarterly Morasha JGSI newsletter, and much more.

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