12 March 2009

Who Do You Think You Are? Conference 2009: Debuting DNA

This year companies who do DNA testing for genealogy purposes made their debut at the world’s largest genealogy conference, Who Do You Think You Are? A few companies had booths, but in my passing I never saw more than a couple of people at any one of them with the exception of Family Tree DNA. This biggest question I had was: Where were Oxford Ancestry and Ethnoancestry DNA companies? I had expected them to have booths, also.

Family Tree DNA not only performed DNA testing at their booth, but had a series of speakers for the three days who discussed the basics of testing for genealogists and success stories related to the UK. I had decided to attend the conference as an excuse to get back to London as well as being a part of the world’s largest genealogy conference with its debut of genetic genealogy. However, as FTDNA’s booth was so busy, I spent most of Friday and Saturday helping them answer questions and swabbing testers. As a speaker for genetic genealogy, I knew I could be of assistance. It was wonderful meeting so many people and being able to share my knowledge with them.

As a result, our UK Debutant, Family Tree DNA, accomplished what they expected and plans to return next year. They also received an invitation to join The Gathering 2009, an International Gathering of the Clans in Edinburgh this summer. Oh, how I wish I could be there! (Donations for my attendance are being accepted now! LOL)

Below is a few photos at the Family Tree DNA booth and presentation stage, taken when things were calm enough to take pictures.

Katherine Borges, Maureen Taylor, and Emily

Max Blankfeld

Katherine Hope Borges

Saturday was Scottish Day. This group entertained the line awaiting entrance.

At the end of the day: Doron Behar (mtDNA specialist), Michael Hammer (Heads the University of Arizona lab for FTDNA) and Max Blankfeld (FTDNA V-P)

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