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2022 West Valley Genealogical Society Annual Seminar – Feb 19, 2022



Unmasking Your Genealogy with Michael L. Strauss


Michael L. Strauss, AG is a professional accredited genealogist and nationally recognized speaker.

Mr. Strauss has a BA in History and is a U.S. Coast Guard veteran.

He is a qualified expert witness in the courts in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Virginia and is a faculty member at three genealogical institutes SLIG, GRIP, and IGHR where he is the military course coordinator.



  • Introduction to Military Genealogy Research
  • Hidden Clues Found Inside the U.S. Federal Census, 1790-1840
  • The Draft and the Selective Service System
  • More than just Obituaries: Genealogical Newspaper Research

Registration: 8:30-9:00 am – Seminar 9:00-3:30 pm


Shepherd of the Hills United Methodist Church
13658 W. Meeker Blvd. Fellowship Hall
Sun City West, Arizona

Map location link

Registration Fee: $45 up to 12/31/21, $50 after 1/1/22.
Fee includes the seminar, continental breakfast, box lunch, beverages, and prizes.

Register here online, or download the registration form and mail to the Library.

You can see some of our past seminars that have been held below:

2021 Virtual Seminar with Angie Bush

Usage of DNA Tools to Expand Your Family Story

Angie Bush’s bio:

Angie Bush, MS is the Region 1 Director for the National Genealogical Society, and the chair of the Genetic Genealogy Committee. Her day job is as a Genetic Genealogist Researcher with Ancestry ProGenealogists in Salt Lake City.

Angie has been interested in her genealogy since she was very young. After college, she spent several years working in biotech while continuing to pursue her genealogy hobby. With the growing popularity and introduction of autosomal DNA testing in 2012, she decided to combine her two loves into one career.

Although she spends a lot of time working on recent unknown parentage cases (adoptions, unknown fathers), her favorite type of research to do involves solving decades-old “brick-walls” using a combination of traditional records and genetic evidence. She is a popular speaker and presenter and enjoys attending conferences where she can connect with others who share her passion for genealogy.

Here are the talks in this order:

    • Making DNA a Part of Your Genealogical Research
      Learn to analyze your genealogical research problems and determine if DNA testing might help you answer your questions. We will discuss the types of problems DNA testing is best suited to answer, who you should test and where you should test them.
    • DNA Doesn’t Prove Anything
      DNA testing has helped many people answer long-standing research questions, but it is not a magic bullet. DNA alone will not answer any question of kinship and identity. Learn how to correlate and analyze your DNA test results with historical data to meet the GPS and build a proof argument to answer your difficult research questions.
    • Tips and Tricks for Making the Most of Your DNA
      The amount of information provided with DNA test results can be overwhelming. Learn how to zero in on the information that is going to be most useful to you as a genealogist. We will discuss tips and tricks for analyzing and organizing the data so that it is most useful to you.
    • Tools the Pros Use
      Although the DNA testing companies are innovating and coming up with new tools to help us, there are other tried and true genealogical research tools and third-party innovators who have developed tools to help us use our DNA results. Learn about the tools the pros at AncestryProGenealogists use to help their clients find and tell their family stories with DNA.


    2020 Annual Seminar with Dr. Thomas W. Jones

    Saturday – February 15, 2020

    Tom has been pursuing his ancestry since 1963. For the first twenty years he was clueless about what he was trying to accomplish and how to do it.

    When he started climbing the genealogy learning curve he repeatedly experienced the challenges, joys, and rewards of tracing ancestors reliably and fully understanding their lives.


    Tom eventually became an award-winning writer, board-certified genealogist, editor of the National Genealogical Society Quarterly, recipient of honors from genealogical organizations, and author of the textbooks Mastering Genealogical Proof and Mastering Genealogical Documentation.

    Using his nearly lifelong career in education as a springboard, he enjoys teaching at weeklong genealogy institutes, weekend seminars, and local, national, and international genealogy conferences.


      • Topics Solving Problems with Original Records


      • Five Proven Techniques for Finding Your Ancestor’s European Origin


      • Systematically Using Autosomal DNA Test Results to Help Break Th rough Genealogical Brick Walls


    • Creating a Family History of Lasting Value

    READ MORE about Tom Jones!

    Shepherd of the Hills United Methodist Church
    13658 West Meeker Blvd.

    Sun City West, Arizona

    Fellowship Hall
     Map location link

    here’s what was said about our 2019 seminar …

    *Wonderful speaker!
    *Excellent! Very engaging!

    *presentations are informative and fun.
    *Outstanding! *WVGS seminars shouldn’t be missed!   Join us in 2021!

    2019 Annual Seminar with Judy Russell


    Growing Your Family Tree

    The Legal Genealogist, Judy G. Russell, is a genealogist with a law degree who writes and lectures on topics ranging from using court records in family history to understanding DNA testing.

    On the faculty of numerous genealogy institutes, she is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Board for Certifi cation of Genealogists®, from which she holds credentials as a Certified Genealogist® and Certified Genealogical Lecturer.


West Valley Genealogical Society