Recent Blog Posts

bpl postcard
The Value of Open Public Records
Records and Repositories
Rate this blog entry:
10849762 815727755140585 6825543623968073505 n
MGC's NERGC Panel on Open Records: Citizens Can Make a Difference
General Legislation
Rate this blog entry:
How many deaths before the SSDI gets updated again?
Legislation Federal
Rate this blog entry:

MGC Blog Tag Cloud

open access Access Jan Meisels Allen budget cuts Social Security Administration Lame Duck land records legislation 2012 RPAC FamilySearch Vendors Free S3432 legislation New Jersey Helen Shaw Virginia Annual Meeting and Seminar Ancestry S1534 medical pedigree Bruce Cohen DMF Identity Theft legislators HR3475 HR 295 sysoon Tennessee IGS Michael J. Astrue Oklahoma SSDI Harold Henderson New Hampshire Sharon Sergeant Jan Alpert volunteerism online registration mail forwarding 2014 Seminar RPAC S-1534 Elections Rep. Richard Nugent (FL) TIGTA audit smallpox Virginia family traits Speakers FGS David Rencher ISJGS Vital Records Fred Moss Georgia FGS Conference DMF; SSDI; Tax Fraud; legislation Kenneth Ryesky volunteers SSDI closures War of 1812 blog Georgia Archives Alfred DeMaria Richard McCoy State archives NEHGS Massachusetts Kate Auspitz DMF Barbara Mathews Death Master File Federal Public Records Henning Jacobson access medical profile Open Access Jacobson v Massachusetts Congress Melinde Byrne State Library health history Annual Seminar NFOIC identity fraud Genealogy Public Records public access Judy Russell inheritable disease Records Access humane Records Access Society Showcase Richard Nugent Arkansas Ethnicity HR6205 MGC Thomas MacEntee HR3475 Newsletter Mary Ellen Grogran Delaware outreach Linda McCleary Tennessee pensions HR295 funding Annual Seminar Lou Szucs State legislation SSA New Hampshire Congress Donna Holt Siemiatoski Teresa Scott NGS NAPHSIS records access Rhode Island Programs budget Arkansas fraud threats to access Legal Genealogist Randy Seaver State House communication 2012 Seminar Transparency diagnosis records access legislation archives Pennsylvania APG Roundtable Georgia Senate family medical history SSA civil records Rep. Michael Capuano (MA) Sponsors DPH Presidential Citation Education Annual Meeting Registration records access IAJGS introduction Alvie Davidson Presenters threats to access IRS Tax Fraud Advocacy Rep. Sam Johnson (TX) APG FOIA Billie Fogarty Jan Meisels Allen seminar Legislative IAJGS award FGS Stan Nyberg Advocacy Instruction Civil Records Massachusetts NERGC Health pedigree


(Online donations available
after website update in 2016.)
MGC has been recognized as tax-exempt under Internal Revenue Code 501(c)(3). Gifts of support are fully tax-deductible and donors will receive a written acknowledgement for tax purposes.

MGC Sentinel logo MGC Sentinel Logo

MGC Sentinel

Keeping Watch Over Massachusetts Public Records

  • Home
    Home This is where you can find all the blog posts throughout the site.
  • Categories
    Categories Displays a list of categories from this blog.
  • Tags
    Tags Displays a list of tags that have been used in the blog.
  • Bloggers
    Bloggers Search for your favorite blogger from this site.
  • Team Blogs
    Team Blogs Find your favorite team blogs here.
  • Login
    Login Login form

Records Access a Key Topic at FGS 2012

Posted by on in General Legislation
  • Font size: Larger Smaller
  • Hits: 37138
  • Subscribe to this entry
  • Print


The issue of records access will be front and center at the Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS) 2012 Conference in Birmingham, Alabama next week. For the first time, MGC will have a table at a national conference, and we hope to spread the word about our activities as watchdogs over public records. Our display will be in the Society Showcase section of the exhibit hall and attendees will find answers to many questions plus information on how to get more involved. It can be confusing to those not accustomed to the legislative process, but we aim to demystify! If you are in Birmingham, please stop by our table, pick up our newsletter and think about joining our society!


On the Tuesday night before every FGS conference, the Association of Professional Genealogists (APG) traditionally holds their APG Roundtable. This year it is Records Access: The Art of Advocacy. MGC is thrilled to welcome APG to the advocacy realmThe roundable will feature a panel discussion and some instructive yet fun role playing to help us all envision how to react when we get news of threats to access. Come and learn what happens as a bill moves through the legislature. When is the best time to write a letter, and where is the best place to send it? Are there dos and don'ts to testifying before a committee? What can you do when a clerk refuses to let you see a document you know you have a right to access? Find the answers to these questions and more at the APG Roundtable.


The Records Preservation and Access Committee (RPAC) will be presenting sessions on Wednesday, Society Day. At the "RPAC Update Session", Fred Moss will moderate a panel of RPAC members including Chair David E. Rencher where they will "provide training for RPAC State Liaisons and share materials developed for their use." They will review recent interventions by RPAC and the lessons learned from case studies. MGC President Polly Kimmitt will stand in for Massachusetts State Liaison Mary Ellen Grogan. Stay tuned for a report on RPAC's efforts.


Finally, David E. Rencher, Chair of RPAC, will speak at the FGS luncheon on "Record Access in a Post-9/11 World," where he will describe what genealogical societies and groups can do to combat the threat of having public records removed or redacted.

All in all this conference proves to be filled with opportunites to learn (and teach others) about why we need to be involved. It doesn't have to be difficult. I'm looking forward to meeting new colleagues and hearing creative ideas about the subject.

Last modified on
Rate this blog entry:

Polly FitzGerald Kimmitt is a Board-certified genealogist specializing in Massachusetts research. She has been taking clients for sixteen years and researches a variety of topics from Mayflower lineages to locating townlands of Irish immigrants. She is a case worker under contract to the US Army on repatriation cases, helping to locate family members of servicemen missing or killed in previous conflicts. She currently serves as a director at Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS), and editor of the FGS Voice Newsletter, and is past president of MGC. You can read her personal blog at


  • No comments made yet. Be the first to submit a comment

Leave your comment

Guest Monday, 16 October 2017