Beth Snyder Named One of WSGS’s Outstanding Volunteers in 2023

Since 2003, the Washington State Genealogical Society has recognized over 600 outstanding volunteers and teams, nominated by their local society or genealogical organization for their service and dedication. These volunteers are the backbone of their local society, giving their time and expertise, to the organization and the field of genealogy. In the coming months, you will be introduced to each of the 2023 award recipients and learn why they received the 2023 WSGS Outstanding Volunteer and Team Award.

Today we’re introducing Beth Snyder of Bellevue, Washington, who were nominated by the Eastside Genealogical Society (EGS).

Beth joined EGS in 2015. In 2016, she was named the SIG coordinator and joined the EGS board. She immediately focused on improving communications between the individual SIGs, the board and the general membership.

In 2019 as co-chair of the program committee, Beth worked to find new program topics and coordinated closely with the Bellevue Regional Library (BRL), our partner organization, to find program topics that would be of interest to EGS members as well as supporting existing library themes. In 2020 as EGS transitioned to using Zoom for its meetings, Beth quickly capitalized on Zoom’s greatly expanded inventory of available program topics that were less expensive and offered more flexible scheduling than in-person presentations.

In 2023 in addition to her role as program chair, Beth began publishing an electronic “Occasional Newsletter” which is intended to improve communications within EGS.

For more information on the WSGS Outstanding Volunteer Award program, visit the Recognition page of the WSGS website or contact Info@wasgs.org. Please type “Volunteer Award” in the subject line.

Outstanding Volunteer/Team Nominations Sought

It’s that time of year! Time for your society to honor your outstanding volunteers or teams with an Outstanding Volunteer or Team Award. 

  • No later than July 1, 2024: Submit the form and photograph of your honoree(s) to Info@wasgs.org. The narrative (approximately 150 words) should explain the accomplishments of your nominee/team and why you are honoring him/her/them. The photo should be a good quality digital photograph (at least 300 dpi).
  • September 1, 2024: Formal announcement of the recipients will be announced.

A few special notes:

  • Local societies can submit up to two individuals or one teams/projects for special recognition by WSGS. Contact Roxanne Lowe at Info@wasgs.org if you have an extraordinary situation.
  • The Outstanding Volunteer/Team Award program is not a competition – it is locally driven. All nominees from local societies will be honored with an Outstanding Volunteer/Team certificate, but we want these awards to be special, so please don’t nominate your whole society (even though they are outstanding!).
  • Posthumous awards may be considered.
  • If your nominee is camera shy & doesn’t want to have a picture submitted, that’s fine. Also, if you’re unable to snap a picture of your whole team, we’re okay with individual member photos.
  • Nominees may have received an Outstanding Volunteer award previously. Click here for a cumulative list of awardees (alpha by name and by society).
  • Please honor the July 1 timeline for nominations. There is a lot of behind-the-scenes work, including reviews, to be done before the announcement on September 1.
  • The nomination form is available here. Please complete one form per person or team.

Additional details and deadlines may be found at the WSGS website here.

Please contact Roxanne Lowe at Info@wasgs.org if you have questions or suggestions.

Kathleen Sizer Named One of WSGS’s Outstanding Volunteers in 2023

Since 2003, the Washington State Genealogical Society has recognized over 600 outstanding volunteers and teams, nominated by their local society or genealogical organization for their service and dedication. These volunteers are the backbone of their local society, giving their time and expertise, to the organization and the field of genealogy. In the coming months, you will be introduced to each of the 2023 award recipients and learn why they received the 2023 WSGS Outstanding Volunteer and Team Award.

Today we’re introducing Kathleen Weddle Sizer of Granger, Washington, who were nominated by the Yakima Valley Genealogical Society (YVGS).

Kathy joined YVGS in 1975 and served the public coffee at Indian John Hill Rest Area on I-90 in fundraising.  She has been a librarian since the 1980s and served as vice-president, president, secretary and currently as treasurer of the society. She is also a jack-of-all-trades volunteering in hospitality, yard sales, mowing the lawn, helping clean the library and the past two years has been on the bylaws and standing rules committee updating the society’s rules to match the new State regulations.

Kathy is the current president of WSGS. She has also served WSGS as membership chair since 2017 and past secretary. 

For more information on the WSGS Outstanding Volunteer Award program, visit the Recognition page of the WSGS website or contact Info@wasgs.org. Please type “Volunteer Award” in the subject line.

Nominations for President’s Award for Outstanding Achievement Sought

The nomination period for the Washington State Genealogical Society President’s Award for Outstanding Achievement is open. Nominations are due by 01 Aug 2024. The announcement will be made 01 Sep 2024.

The President’s Award for Outstanding Achievement is designed to single out that rare individual, society or organization who has demonstrated exemplary service above and beyond expectations.

The ideal recipient of the President’s Award for Outstanding Achievement has:

• Exhibited long-term, consistent service in the field of genealogy, family or local history, the genealogical community, records preservation or made an important single contribution in those areas that will endure into the future.
• Demonstrated a high degree of energy, commitment, flexibility, and professional conduct.
• Provided significant support and impact to the local genealogical community time and time again.
• Exhibited personal influence and example to society members and/or the general public with their unselfish service.
• Supported or advanced local or statewide genealogical research.

Nominations may be submitted by any individual, local society or organization, regardless of WSGS membership. Nominees do not have to have been officers in their local societies.

Previous recipients of this prestigious award include:

  • 2015 – Fred Pflugrath, Wenatchee Area Genealogical Society
  • 2016 – Margie Wilson, Skagit Valley Genealogical Society
  • 2017 – Joanne Egbert Calhoun, Wenatchee Area Genealogical Society
  • 2018 – Ann Olson, Olympia Genealogical Society
  • 2021 – Helen McGreer Lewis, South King County Genealogical Society (posthumous)
  • 2022 – Jill Morelli. Seattle Genealogical Society
  • 2023 – Karen Mitchell, Clallam County Genealogical Society

Additional information, including the nomination form, is available here. Questions should be directed to Info@wasgs.org. Please type “President’s Award” in the Subject Line.

Mardi Scott Named One of WSGS’s Outstanding Volunteers in 2023

Since 2003, the Washington State Genealogical Society has recognized over 600 outstanding volunteers and teams, nominated by their local society or genealogical organization for their service and dedication. These volunteers are the backbone of their local society, giving their time and expertise, to the organization and the field of genealogy. In the coming months, you will be introduced to each of the 2023 award recipients and learn why they received the 2023 WSGS Outstanding Volunteer and Team Award.

Today we’re introducing Mardi Scott of Wenatchee, Washington, who were nominated by the Wenatchee Area Genealogical Society (WAGS).

Mardi has been creating eye-catching bulletin boards for the WAGS Library since 2017. They are inviting and bright, often illustrating a solution to a genealogy problem; sometimes highlighting items from the monthly newsletter; or going wherever her curiosity leads her. In February 2023, she did a delightful board commemorating what would have been her late mother’s 100th birthday. Her work helps make the WAGS Library a welcoming and vibrant place.

For more information on the WSGS Outstanding Volunteer Award program, visit the Recognition page of the WSGS website or contact Info@wasgs.org. Please type “Volunteer Award” in the subject line.

Supportive Grant Applications Due July 31

Is your local genealogy society interested in financial assistance for a special project or need? Applications for the WSGS Supportive Grants are being accepted through July 31, 2024.

The grants, up to $250 each, are designed to support the inventive and creative efforts of WSGS-member societies and organizations or fill a need that your society has. The awards do not have to be repaid — they’re yours to support worthy projects. Two grants will be awarded in 2024.

The simple application is only ONE page. The application and additional guidance is available here. For more information, visit our website at https://www.wasgs.org/cpage.php?pt=90.

Contact Outreach@wasgs.org if you have other questions. Please note “Grants” in the Subject Line.

Katherine Pettersen Named One of WSGS’s Outstanding Volunteers in 2023

Since 2003, the Washington State Genealogical Society has recognized over 600 outstanding volunteers and teams, nominated by their local society or genealogical organization for their service and dedication. These volunteers are the backbone of their local society, giving their time and expertise, to the organization and the field of genealogy. In the coming months, you will be introduced to each of the 2023 award recipients and learn why they received the 2023 WSGS Outstanding Volunteer and Team Award.

Today we’re introducing Katherine Gibson Pettersen of Longview, Washington, who were nominated by the Lower Columbia Genealogical Society (LCGS).

As one of LCGS’s newer members, Katherine, affectionally known as Kat, has been a great asset to the society.  She has been a strong voice as a trustee.  As a member of the program committee, she offers great suggestions for potential speakers and facilitates the speakers’ virtual presentations.

Kat’s greatest contribution has been in assisting in the transition from meeting in person to meeting virtually. She has moderated all of the society’s general and board meetings, as well as assisted those who have had difficulty grasping the technology of meeting via Zoom.

Kat handles issues in a calm manner.  One member stated that she has the patience of a saint, and another said that she never seems to get ruffled.

For more information on the WSGS Outstanding Volunteer Award program, visit the Recognition page of the WSGS website or contact Info@wasgs.org. Please type “Volunteer Award” in the subject line.

Monica and Don Peters Named Two of WSGS’s Outstanding Volunteers in 2023

Since 2003, the Washington State Genealogical Society has recognized over 600 outstanding volunteers and teams, nominated by their local society or genealogical organization for their service and dedication. These volunteers are the backbone of their local society, giving their time and expertise, to the organization and the field of genealogy. In the coming months, you will be introduced to each of the 2023 award recipients and learn why they received the 2023 WSGS Outstanding Volunteer and Team Award.

Today we’re introducing Monica and Don Peters of Pullman, Washington, who were nominated by the Whitman County Genealogical Society (WCGS).

Monica is among the 1984 “Founding Mothers” of WCGS, and has served on the board since. As corresponding secretary, she efficiently manages the society’s communications and promotes activities at the core of its purpose.  With deep roots in Whitman County, she serves as the society’s primary researcher.  Her sleuthing uncovers intriguing stories, which she generously shares in newsletter articles.

Monica was instrumental in establishing an endowment fund which allows the society to provide college scholarships to high school seniors demonstrating interest in family history. Her communication of fiscal matters enhances the financial business of the society.

In partnership with Monica, Don unfailingly provides behind-the-scenes support to WCGS.  He assists in the society’s efforts to wrangle technology needed to accomplish its goals. He is generous with his time and expertise in any matter under consideration.  

For more information on the WSGS Outstanding Volunteer Award program, visit the Recognition page of the WSGS website or contact Info@wasgs.org. Please type “Volunteer Award” in the subject line.

Lisa Oberg Named One of WSGS’s Outstanding Volunteers in 2023

Since 2003, the Washington State Genealogical Society has recognized over 600 outstanding volunteers and teams, nominated by their local society or genealogical organization for their service and dedication. These volunteers are the backbone of their local society, giving their time and expertise, to the organization and the field of genealogy. In the coming months, you will be introduced to each of the 2023 award recipients and learn why they received the 2023 WSGS Outstanding Volunteer and Team Award.

Today we’re introducing Lisa Oberg of Shoreline, Washington, who was nominated by the Seattle Genealogical Society (SGS).

Lisa, a 14-year member of SGS, is currently co-chair of the SGS100 Committee, which is responsible for planning, organizing, and executing SGS’s year-long celebration of the 100th anniversary of its founding.  She conceived the idea that became the SGS100 Writer’s C(r)amp, a three-day writer’s retreat on San Juan Island, during which she provided consultations based on her professional expertise as well as light meals for the attendees. The event was such a success that SGS is considering making it an annual program.

Prior to the COVID-19 disruption of group meetings, Lisa led many SGS-sponsored cemetery tours such as a trip to the Seattle Civil War Cemetery, where she had members of the group research some of the soldiers interred there. She has also helped with many of the less glamorous SGS jobs, serving several times on the Elections Committee, helping with the creation and early testing of SGS’s internet-based ballot system.

For more information on the WSGS Outstanding Volunteer Award program, visit the Recognition page of the WSGS website or contact Info@wasgs.org. Please type “Volunteer Award” in the subject line.

Jill Morelli Named One of WSGS’s Outstanding Volunteers in 2023

Since 2003, the Washington State Genealogical Society has recognized over 600 outstanding volunteers and teams, nominated by their local society or genealogical organization for their service and dedication. These volunteers are the backbone of their local society, giving their time and expertise, to the organization and the field of genealogy. In the coming months, you will be introduced to each of the 2023 award recipients and learn why they received the 2023 WSGS Outstanding Volunteer and Team Award.

Today we’re introducing Jill Morelli of Seattle, Washington, who was nominated by the Puget Sound Chapter of the Association of Professional Genealogists (PS-APG).

Jill’s genealogical journey began with “Roots” from the 1970s. It really took off after completing a University of Washington certificate course, which led to the ProGen 19 study group. Along the way, Jill attended numerous national conferences and multiple genealogical institutes. She became a Certified Genealogist (CG) and later a Certified Genealogical Lecturer (CGL). Jill is a past president of the Seattle Genealogical Society, blogger for more than a decade, and co-founder of the Applied Genealogy Institute.

Jill joined the PS-APG in 2014. During 2018-19, the chapter nearly folded due to ailing attendance at onsite meetings. In 2020, chapter meetings went virtual and Jill volunteered to recruit interesting and notable speakers. Her efforts culminated in 2022 when the PS-APG chapter received the “Golden Chapter” award for the most improved APG chapter.

For more information on the WSGS Outstanding Volunteer Award program, visit the Recognition page of the WSGS website or contact Info@wasgs.org. Please type “Volunteer Award” in the subject line.