Category Archives: All Sessions

There is a skeleton in my closet! – Norma Hettinger

If you have that skeleton lurking in your family closet, how do you find records on these individuals?  Do we slam the door shut or do we use the information to make our family stories more interesting! Hope to have some fun discussions! (All expertise levels)


Bio: Norma Hettinger has been searching her family history since she was a child beside her parents as they visited Kentucky cemeteries and dusty old court houses.  She learned to love the stories told by relatives and enjoyed the time getting to know them better.  This love for genealogy helped her serve for 13 years as Director of the Louisville Family History Center, serve a two-year Family History Mission with her husband establishing a Family History Center in Bardstown, Kentucky, and serve for three years as the Matron of the Louisville Kentucky Temple .  She is a member of the Louisville Genealogy Society and the Peter Foree Chapter of the DAR. She and her husband, Dale have 5 children and 17 grandchildren.

Siblings for Sarah: A Whole-Family Research Approach to Identifying Parents – Deborah Campisano

Identifying parents for an ancestor using mostly indirect evidence requires a unique strategy and involves reconstructing a family unit before parentage is revealed.  No single record names the parents of Sarah Easton Thompson, or her specific place of birth other  than ”Kentucky”.  This case study details the reconstruction of Sarah’s family unit using the records created by probable kin and collateral lines.  This led to the discovery of her parents’ names, her place of birth, and nine brothers and sisters. If you have lost ancestors, this class may just give you hints on where to search. (Intermediate or Advanced)


Deborah Lord Campisano, (BA History), has over 35 years of genealogical research experience – 25 as a professional.  She completed genealogical course work at a number of institutes including IGHR, SLIG, GEN-Fed, and GRIP  and lectures on methodology at local, state and regional conferences. Deborah’s focus since 2014 has been genetic genealogy.  She is co-leader with colleague, Debra Smith Renard, of the Louisville Genealogical Society’s Genetic Genealogy Special Interest Group.

Tackling Tough Cases Using Y-DNA – Debra Renard

Y-DNA testing can help you tackle big research challenges.  Learn approaches for finding a surname, refuting surname connections, distinguishing family groups and determining patrilineal origins.  Solve the mysteries! (All expert levels)


Debra Smith Renard, the founder of Eureka! Genealogy, is a researcher and lecturer specializing in genetic genealogy.  She is co-leader of the Louisville Genetic Genealogy Special Interest Group.  Debra is a board member of the Louisville Genealogical Society, and is Secretary of the Kentucky Chapter of the Association of Professional Genealogists.  She is also a staff genealogist for the National Society Sons of the American Revolution.  Debra speaks at the local, regional and national levels and is especially passionate about helping those with unknown birth family find their roots.

Googling Your Family Tree – Chris Hettinger

There is a lot more to Google than simple searches.  Learn about their other tools that can help you in your research including books, newspapers, maps, blogs and advanced search tools.


Christ Hettinger is an engineer by trade and a genealogist by hobby. He has been researching his family tree for nine years. He and his wife have been married for 11 years and they have 3 children, all named for ancestors, of course. When he is not working as a design engineer for GE Appliances, he spends time with his family. He also frequently leads 80 Cub Scouts on adventures as the Cub mater of the Cub Scout pack at his church. While he should be sleeping, he can often be found remodeling his home, hobbying in electronics, or researching his family tee. Chris likes to use technology to make things more organized and efficient and loves to share his knowledge with others.


FamilySearch: Your Next Best Friend – Pam Brinegar

An essential tool for family historians, FamilySearch is home to the largest collection of free online records.  You will find information no matter what historical period or country you’re researching.  FamilySearch, with its extensive wiki, learning center and online classes, is a top resource.  We’ll discuss how creative catalog searching, including the use of keywords, can help us obtain the best results from this unique, rapidly-expanding site.   (All expertise levels)


Pamela Lyons Brinegar is a board-certified genealogist who specializes in Kentucky and African American research. Pam developed and taught for several years a popular eight-week family history course offered through he Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at the University of Kentucky. She is the recipient of a Kentucky Foundation for Women Artist Enrichment grant and a writing excellence award from the International Society of Family History Writers and Editors. She is perhaps best characterized by a Louisa May Alcott line from the novel Work: “She is too fond of books, and it has turned her mind.”