Wednesday, February 13, 2019

NERGC 2019 Interview ~ Shellee Morehead

The 15th biennial New England Regional Genealogical Consortium conference will be held in Manchester, New Hampshire, from April 3-6. Visit the website for all the conference information and register before February 28 to get the early bird discount! For those of you in New England, this is the best, closest conference you'll get a chance to attend. This will be the third NERGC conference that I have attended and I'm looking forward to it!

Several New England Geneabloggers have been invited to interview some of the speakers and I have the pleasure of sharing my interview with Shellee Morehead, Ph.D., CG®.


Elizabeth Handler [EH]: What got you interested in genealogy and how long have you been doing it?
Shellee Morehead [SM]: I’ve been interested in genealogy since my teens, and have been doing research about 20 years, and been professional about 8.

[EH]: Your bio says that you are an assistant professor in Biological Sciences. How has this helped you learn about genetic genealogy?
[SM]: Actually, I was a biologist long before there was such a thing as genetic genealogy. My doctorate is in evolutionary biology and I was using DNA sequencing, and phylogenetics before the first Nat Geo project. For me, having a background in molecular biology, phylogenetics and population genetics has helped me in highlighting the key things for people new to genetic genealogy to focus on. It can be overwhelming, so I like to start with the basics.

[EH]: What is your favorite genealogical subject to teach and why?
[SM]: That’s like asking which is my favorite child! (I only have one child, so it’s OK.) I like talking about DNA, and the GPS mostly, but the ethnic stuff is next on my list.

[EH]: I see that one of your NERGC presentations is “Don’t Panic Yet: Citations for Beginners.” Without giving away your presentation, what one or two suggestions do you offer about citing our sources?
[SM]: Do it as you research! And it doesn’t have to be perfect, just get it done.

[EH]: When did you become a Certified Genealogist? How has this helped you as a genealogist?
[SM]: I was first certified in 2012 and renewed in 2017. It helps in a lot of subtle ways; I always have learning and improving in the back of my mind, knowing that renewal is not that far away, so it keeps me growing as a researching and trying to improve my report writing and speaking.

[EH]: Living in Rhode Island, can I assume that you have attended NERGC in the past? What are you most looking forward to at NERGC 2019 (besides enjoying the company of hundreds of other genealogists)?
[SM]: I started at NERGC in 2009, so this will be my 6th conference, my 5th as a speaker. I love seeing people I don’t get to see often enough, I like rooming with my cousin, and meeting new people. I love the special interest groups, society night and I really enjoy volunteering at the Ancestors Road Show, lots of interesting questions come in then.


Shellee will be teaching the following sessions:
"Don't Panic Yet: Citations for Beginners" (Thursday, 4:30-5:30)
"Another Kind of Navigation: GPS for Genealogy" (Saturday, 8:30-9:30)
"DNA Solves a Mystery: Hamiltons in Colonial New England" (Saturday, 4:45-5:45)

I have also interviewed Elissa Scalise Powell, CG®, CGL, and Schelly Talalay Dardashti at my other blog, A Jewish Genealogy Journey.

Am I going to see you at NERGC? Let me know in the comments.

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