Speaking at RootsTechI teach and speak on a range of subjects, especially creative research approaches, storytelling for family historians, technology in the genealogy industry, and community-based research projects.  My approach combines real-world research and storytelling examples to demonstrate not only how to make surprising discoveries, but also how to share them in an engaging way.

I have spoken at many large family history conferences and numerous local groups all over the U.S., Canada, and Israel, as well as at prestigious venues like the Library of Congress, New York Public Library, Skirball Cultural Center, and Ellis Island (complete list below).  I have also been featured multiple times on BYU Radio.

See me in action in my most popular presentation, “Top 10 Things I Learned About My Family From My Couch: Beginning Internet Genealogy”:

What a treat – it is informative, funny, and instructive… What an excellent presentation! I loved it. I think every genealogist will love it – please don’t miss this one!
Randy Seaver, Genea-Musings

(Please click here if you can’t view the video player above.  Additional videos of past lectures are available here.  My current list of lecture topics is here.)


Jewish Genealogical Society of Illinois
March 24, 2019, 1 PM; Northbrook, IL

  • The Margarine Moonshiners from Minsk
  • Conducting Story-Driven Research

Personal Digital Archiving Conference
May 2-4, 2019; University of Pittsburgh

  • Small Town, Big Data: Reconstructing the Forgotten History of Jewish Homestead through Mass Digitization

Family History Fanatics
April 5, 2019, time TBD

  • Guest for Friday Livestream (online)

Squirrel Hill Historical Society
January 8, 2020, 7:30 PM; Pittsburgh, PA

  • Homestead and Squirrel Hill (title TBD)


Jewish Genealogical Society of Connecticut
January 20, 2019, 1:30 PM

  • Technology for Creating Cousin Bait that Works

Jewish Genealogy Symposium
January 13, 2019; Boca Raton, FL

  • The Ancestor Deep-Drive
  • Technology for Creating Cousin Bait That Works
  • Lost and Found: Rediscovering My Family History in the Internet Age

Pittsburgh Jewish Genealogical Society
December 16, 2018, 10:30 AM; Heinz History Center, Pittsburgh, PA

  • Top 10 Things I Learned About My Family from My Couch

North Hills Genealogists
August 21, 2018, 6:45 PM; McCandless, PA

  • Researching Your Jewish Ancestors in Pennsylvania

Jewish Genealogical Society of Maryland
June 24, 2018, 1:30 PM; Pikesville, MD

  • Technology for Creating Cousin Bait that Works

Mt. Lebanon Genealogical Society
April 17, 2018, 1 PM; Pittsburgh, PA

  • Top 10 Things I Learned About My Family From My Couch

Family History Fanatics eConference
January 19, 2018, all day (online)

  • Conducting Story-Driven Research, 12:30 PM

Southern California Genealogical Society Jamboree Extension Series Webinars
December 20, 2017, 6 PM PST (online)

  • 100 Days to a Better Family History


Congregation Beth Shalom
January 5, 2019, 12:45 PM; Pittsburgh, PA

  • Secrets of the Homestead Hebrew Chapel:  Variations of a Theme of Sunt Lacrimae Rerum

Rauh Jewish History Program & Archives
November 12, 2017, 10:30 AM; Heinz History Center, Pittsburgh, PA

125th Anniversary of the Battle of Homestead
April 6, 2017, 7 PM; Rivers of Steel Museum, Homestead, PA

  • From Milltown to Hometown: How the Homestead Strike Shaped a Community

Family History Technology Workshop
February 7, 2017; Provo, UT

  • Data Management for Large-Scale Genealogy Projects

Carlow University
November 9, 2016; Pittsburgh, PA

  • Guest Lecturer, HS 148 DA: The Homestead Strike

Skirball Cultural Center
December 2, 2015; Los Angeles, CA

  • Annual Herscher Dialogue:  Jack Skirball, A Boy from Homestead

The Library of Congress
May 18, 2015, 12 PM; Washington, DC

  • In Search of a Usable Past:  Reconstructing the Jewish History of Homestead, Pennsylvania

Past appearances


  • RootsTech 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017
  • Family History Technology Workshop 2017
  • Federation of Genealogical Societies Annual Conference 2017
  • New England Regional Genealogical Consortium 2015
  • National Genealogical Society 2014
  • Afro-American Historical and Genealogical Society 2014
  • International Conference on Jewish Genealogy 2014, 2015, 2017
  • Jamboree 2012, 2013, 2014
  • A.J. Jacobs’ Global Family Reunion


  • Library of Congress
  • Skirball Cultural Center
  • New York Public Library
  • Ellis Island
  • Carnegie Mellon University
  • Heinz History Center
  • Carnegie Library of Homestead

Local groups:

  • AZ:  Arizona Jewish Historical Society
  • CA:  Southern California Genealogical Society, Jewish Genealogical Society of Los Angeles, JGS of Conejo Valley & Ventura County
  • CT:  Darien Library-Family Search “Come Discover an Ancestor Day,” JGS of Connecticut
  • DC:  JGS of Greater Washington
  • FL: JGS of Palm Beach Country
  • IL:  JGS of Illinois (forthcoming)
  • MD:  JGS of Maryland
  • MA:  JGS of Greater Boston
  • NJ:  New Jersey Chapter of the Association of Professional Genealogists, Monmouth County Genealogical Society
  • NY:  New York Metro Chapter of the Association of Professional Genealogists, JGS of New York
  • PA:  Carlow University, Genealogical Society of Pennsylvania, Western Pennsylvania Genealogical Society, Bucks County Genealogical Society, North Hills Genealogists, South Hills Genealogy Day, JGS of Greater Philadelphia, Osher Lifelong Learning Institute, Women’s Club of Upper St. Clair, Beth Samuel Jewish Center, Beth El of the South Hills, Beth Shalom Pittsburgh, JGS of Pittsburgh (forthcoming)
  • UT:  Utah Genealogical Association
  • Canada:  London Jewish Book Fair & Family Festival