Saturday, May 19, 2012

NGS 2012 - an inaugural attendee's review

One week ago today, I was just getting ready to leave the National Genealogical Society (NGS) Conference in Cincinnati, Ohio. It was my first time at a major conference.

The first day I was little nervous and wasn't sure what to expect, but soon got into the swing of lectures, vendor's hall and finding my way around Cincinnati.

As I have been reading all of the blog posts that people made during and after the conference I will not try and recover everything. But I will add a couple of thoughts that I had and things that happened to me.

Here are some of the things that I took away from the conference:
  1. I have a business website and a personal website. However, I only have cards that have my business information on them. Maybe I should have a small number of personal cards made up that have my personal website and social media information on them. This way I can give the personal cards out to people/colleagues that aren't looking to hire me.
  2. Elizabeth Shown Mills, Dr Thomas Jones and Barbara Vines Little could give a seminar where they just read the phone book out loud and I would attend!
  3. Going from being on the computer all day long, every day to NO computer at all for four days is extremely difficult. Talk about having withdrawals! Blah! Not fun.
  4. I had not realized how much of a disconnect there is for me between the people that I follow on all of the social media sites (Twitter, Google+, Facebook, etc.). It's as if they're "genealogy celebrities." I saw and meet several people that I have followed or heard online for years and was as nervous as I would be if I were meeting Robert Downey, Jr. 
  5. The Conference app was great. I had already chosen the lectures I wanted to attend and had a reminder set within the app. So 15 minutes before the chosen lectures a gentle reminder would come up on my IPod to tell me where I needed to be next. Awesome!
  6. Speaking of a genealogy celebrity that I got to meet....I got interviewed by Lisa Louise Cooke for the Genealogy Gems Podcast....what? How did that happen you ask. Well, I was standing at her booth telling her what a huge fan I am and how weird it is to see the people behind the social media contacts when she noticed that this was my first conference. She then pulled her digital recorder "thingy" from her bag and started interviewing me. WHAT!!! I don't really remember what all I said but I do remember asking her after the interview to edit out all of the babbling. So we shall see how it sounds.
So aside from going the long way home because I made a wrong turn and didn't realize it for 15 minutes, will I go to another conference?  You bet!

Hope you enjoyed, glad you stopped by and please come back again ;)


  1. Deborah,

    Enjoyed reading your "take aways" from the conference, especially #5--the conference app. It's amazing how technology has progressed in what seems like such a short time. Your interview with Lisa Louise Cooke sounds like it was fun. I've heard her speak twice since I joined the Livermore-Amador Genealogical Society in Northern California. Perhaps we will meet at the NGS 2013. I heard it's going to be in Las Vegas. Take care, Terri Costa Fraser @terrifraser

    1. Terri,

      Thanks for the comment. I can't believe how nervous I was to just see Lisa ,let alone talk to her. She was totally amazing.

      As for NGS2013 you never know, it may be in the budget, let's hope. I am totally saving my pennies to go to NGS2014 in Richmond Virginia though.

  2. I'm so glad you went because we got a chance to meet! It was a great time, and I completely agree with your assessment. I heard your GG interview today. Great job!

    1. Stephanie,

      It was so nice meeting you at NGS. I really enjoyed talking with you. I didn't sound like a dork in the interview did I? I still haven't listened to it because of being afraid of how twangy I can sound. :P

      Thanks for stopping bye and posting a comment.

  3. Thanks for sharing your insights for those of us who watched from home.

    I can totally relate to the "genealogy celebrity" effect. Luckily (almost) everyone is down to earth and once you meet them, it's like old friends.

    I'll listen for you on the Genealogy Gems podcast. I need to get caught up!

    1. Amy,

      If you had been there I would have had the same reaction to seeing you. :)

      I was walking with one of my new found friends, Stephanie Fishman, from the Corn and Cotton blog, and saw Lisa Alzo coming down the hall. Well needless to say I was totally whispering to Stephanie "That's Lisa Alzo...oh my gosh here comes Lisa Alzo."

      It really was a cool experience of seeing so many people that I have met only online. And you are correct that everyone of them that I met there was so nice and down to earth.



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