ARLINGTON, VA, 12 JUNE 2012: The National Genealogical Society presented its annual awards at the 2012 Family History Conference in Cincinnati, Ohio, 9–12 May 2012. Each year, these awards are presented to organizations and individuals who have made outstanding contributions to NGS programs or have performed outstanding work in the field of genealogy, history, biography, or heraldry.
Kay Haviland Freilich, cgsm, cglsm, was named a Fellow of the National Genealogical Society for her outstanding volunteer work on the Society’s behalf. Kay is a respected teacher, editor, author, and lecturer. She also serves on the editorial staff of the NGS Magazine, has contributed to many NGS conference committees, and was program chair for the Valley Forge family history conference in 1997.
The President’s Citation was presented to Melinde Lutz Byrne, cgsm, fasg, in recognition of her assistance with NGS’ video series, Voices of Genealogy; her ongoing work with the NGS Quarterly’s centennial celebration; and her work as an NGSQ co-editor.
The Family History Writing Contest award is presented to an individual who submits a scholarly article with a compiled family history of at least three generations using a broad variety of research resources. The 2012 contest attracted such a high caliber of entries that the judges chose two recipients: F. Warren Bitner, cgsm, for “Without Land, Occupation, Rights, or Marriage Privilege: the Buettner Family from Germany to America,” and Michael Hait, cgsm, for “In the Shadow of Rebellions.” These articles will be published in upcoming editions of the NGSQ.
The Filby Award for Genealogical Librarianship is awarded to a librarian with at least five years’ experience whose primary focus is genealogy and local history and who is employed in a public, academic, or special library. This year’s award, and a $1,000 prize underwritten by ProQuest, went to Debbi Lyon of the Blasco Memorial Library in Erie, Pennsylvania. The Filby Award is named for the late P. William Filby, former director of the Maryland Historical Society and author of many core genealogical reference tools that genealogists have relied on for decades. Since 2006, the award has been sponsored by ProQuest. In addition to their sponsorship of the prize, ProQuest also acts as underwriting sponsor and key partner for our pre-conference librarians’ day program.
The Shirley Langdon Wilcox Award for Exemplary Volunteerism was awarded to Charles “Chuck” S. Mason Jr., cgsm, a longtime dedicated volunteer at the NGS office in Arlington, Virginia. Named in honor of a past society president and continuing dedicated servant of NGS, this award highlights the sort of selfless, dedicated, and reliable service that is necessary in any genealogical society, whatever its size or place.
The Distinguished Service Awards were presented to the following three individuals: Patricia R. Baars for her longstanding and dedicated service as a grader for the NGS Home Study Course. Graders play a vital role in the success and utility of our NGS American Genealogy: Home Study Course. Mr. Clair Crawford and Dr. Thomas Shawker for their six-year effort to make the AMA Deceased Physician Research Service a success.
The Certificate of Appreciation was presented to Sharon McKinnis. Since December 2010, Sharon has been scanning the Member Ancestor Charts (MACs). Sharon is extremely dedicated, coming to the NGS office twice weekly and working five hours a day on this project. After the charts are scanned, they are uploaded to the NGS website for use by NGS members. Since Sharon began volunteering, more than 17,000 new charts have become available on the NGS website.
The NGS Award of Merit was awarded to Marvin Wilhite, for his exceptional volunteer effort and dedicated service to patrons at the Marshall [Missouri] Public Library’s Genealogy Room.
The NGS Genealogy Hall of Fame honors individuals who, during their lifetime, made significant contributions to genealogy and set the high standards by which we work today. This year, Josephine Cosette Mayou Stillman Frost (1864-1942) was elected to the NGS Genealogy Hall of Fame. During the first four decades of the twentieth century, she was one of the most important contributors to New York genealogy. Frost was nominated by the New York Genealogical and Biographical Society.
The Milton Rubincam Youth Awards are intended to encourage and recognize youth as the next generation of family historians. The Senior Rubincam Award recipient was Nathan Thomas Wheeler of Georgia; the Junior Rubincam Award recipient was Oliver Patterson of California.
The NGSQ Award for Excellence, for an outstanding article published in the NGSQ in the previous calendar year, was presented to Teri D. Tilman, cgsm, of Natchez, Mississippi, for the article “Using Indirect Evidence and Linguistic Analysis to Trace Polin Ries of New Orleans.”
The award of a scholarship for NGS’s advanced studies course, American Genealogy: The Home Study Course, is intended to encourage those pursuing a career in genealogy and who have demonstrated serious interest in genealogy. This year’s recipient was Susan Griffis of Indiana.
The Award for Excellence: Genealogy and Family History Book is presented for a family genealogy or family history book that serves to foster scholarship and/or otherwise advances or promotes excellence in genealogy. This year’s recipients were Christopher Child and Scott Steward of the New England Historic Genealogical Society for The Descendants of Judge John Lowell of Newburyport, Massachusetts.
The Award for Excellence: Genealogical Methods and Sources is presented for a book or article that discusses genealogical methods and sources. This year’s recipient was Paul K. Graham, cgsm, for Georgia Land Lottery Research, published by the Georgia Genealogical Society.
The NGS Newsletter Competition recognizes the hard work, long hours, and creativity that editors devote to their newsletters. This year’s categories and winners are:
Major Genealogical or Historical Society Newsletter
Winner: Ohio Genealogy News, Ohio Genealogical Society
Honorable Mention: Wisconsin State Genealogical Society Newsletter, Wisconsin State Genealogical Society
County or Local Genealogical or Historical Society Newsletter
Winner: PastFinder, Silicon Valley Computer Genealogy Group
Honorable Mention: The Missouri Patriot, Missouri Society—Sons of the Revolution 1776
Family Association Newsletter
Winner: The Timen Stiddem Society Newsletter, The Timen Stiddem Society
Honorable Mention: Our Endicott Heritage Trail, Endecott-Endicott Family Association
The Award of Honor was presented to the Ohio Genealogical Society and the Hamilton County Chapter of OGS for their dedication and sustained service in support of the NGS Family History Conference in Cincinnati in May, and to Kenny Burck, Local Host Chair. Certificates of Appreciation were given to seven individuals for their volunteer service to help make the conference a success. NGS would like to recognize the tireless work of the following volunteers, both in the months leading up to and during the conference: Deb Cyprych, Barbara Gargiulo, Jean Nathan, Sandy St. Martin, Liz Stratton, Patricia Moseley Van Skaik, and Jean Woll.
Founded in 1903, the National Genealogical Society is dedicated to genealogy education, high research standards, and the preservation of genealogical records. The Arlington, Virginia-based nonprofit is the premier national society for everyone, from the beginner to the most advanced family historian, seeking excellence in publications, educational offerings, research guidance, and opportunities to interact with other genealogists.