The 2012 conference held in Salt Lake City was sucessful and everyone has exclaimed that they can't wait until 2015 for the next IBGS that will be held in Washington, DC. It will be planned so that participants can visit the National Museum of African American History and Culture that is slated to open in 2015.
The 2012 International Black Genealogy Summit in Salt Lake City, Utah held October 18 – 20, 2012 was a huge success. With over 250 participants and speakers, the atmosphere was buzzing with the energy from meeting old and new friends, researching at the FamilySearch History Library, having the opportunity to see the Tabernacle Choir, 32 workshops to choose from (including 2 well received workshops from FamilySearch), vendors/exhibits and reception. The keynote speaker, Isabel Wilkerson, a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and author of The New York Times' bestseller, The Warmthof Other Suns, was well received as she took special time while signing participant’s books. Her presentation and having the opportunity to hear her speak left many spellbound.
FamilySearch was recognized and applauded for its "continued dedication and support" of African family history research. FamilySearch was a main sponsor of the conference and provided various keynote speakers, Jim Ison, FamilySearch African American reference specialist and an Accredited and Certified Genealogist, was featured as the opening speaker. He presented an engaging, real case study demonstrating how to use free FamilySearch resources online for conference goers to solve African American research challenges.
As participants were exiting their workshops, the only thing that was continuously echoed was how well received the speakers were and that the information was extremely beneficial. Many of the participants who ventured over to the library were not seen again until the library closed. Having an opportunity to attend one of the library orientations, it was evident that the library housed much needed information and different ways to knock down brick walls for many of the participants. Having them excited that they found relatives, information not found previously or additional ideas on where to look next could only warm the heart of those who understood their passion.
A special highlight for some of the attendees was the opportunity to hear the famous Mormon Tabernacle Choir. Two attendees received an extra surprise when they were invited to participate in the choir's weekly practice session.