Daniel J. Burns

Lecture Titles: Tour Leader: Cathedral of Learning, Carnegie Library; The Role of Historical Societies in Genealogical Research”

Daniel J. Burns is the President of the Mifflin Township Historical Society and a freelance writer. He holds a degree in communications and has written four local history books. He has also authored numerous newsletters and magazine articles on topics including local Pittsburgh history, law enforcement and genealogy.


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Thomas K. Edlund

FEEFHS President

Lecture Titles: “Latin for Genealogists”; “Publishing a Genealogical Society Journal”; “Russian Empire Research”; ”Gazetteers”

Thomas Kent Edlund, a specialist in East European languages and manuscripts, is an Associate Professor of Family and Local History, Brigham Young University and formerly Senior Librarian of Slavic Bibliography at the Family History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah. He has graduated from the University of Utah, the Defense Language Institute Presidio of Monterey, the University of Maryland, Brigham Young University, et al. He has authored many books on language and genealogy, including The Lutherans of Russia, Die Ahnenstammkartei des Deutschen Volkes, Medieval Latin for Family Historians, An Introduction and Index to the German Minority Census of 1939, and A Compendium of Nahuatl Dialectology. He has served as Editor of the FEEFHS Journal since 1998.

Shon R. Edwards

Lecture Titles: “Beginning Czech Research”; “Update on LDS Microfilming in Czech Republic”

Shon R. Edwards is a cataloger of Slovak, Czech, and other Eastern European countries at the Family History Library. He is also in charge of Collection Management for the Czech Republic and Slovakia. He is an accredited researcher (AG) in Czech Republic research and received his BA in German from Brigham Young University, his MA in Computational Linguistics at the same university. He has written Czech Research Outline, available in the FEEFHS Journal or on the Internet at <www.shon.150m.com/czechhtm.htm>.

Patricia Penka French

Lecture Titles: “Bulgarian-Macedonian Culture/Research”

Patricia Penka French is the president of the BMNECC — the Bulgarian Macedonian National Education & Cultural Center in Pittsburgh.

She has spent a lifetime in Public Relations, Promotions, and Development for worthwhile organizations and projects.

Patricia is an interpreter for the U.S. State Department in Bulgarian.

She is recognized throughout the world as one of the truly great forces in Bulgaria’s cultural life.

Irmgard Hein-Ellingson

Lecture Titles: “Austria-Hungary Part I: The Habsburg Heart of Europe”; “Austria-Hungary Part II: Galicia and Bukovina: Multi-Ethnic Overview and Research Resources”; “A Survey of Monotheistic Religions in Central and Eastern Europe with Implications for Archival Research”

Irmgard Hein Ellingson is a previous past president of FEEFHS. The American-born daughter of Volhynian German refugees, she has spent more than 30 years engaged in eastern European study and research. A former public school and college instructor, she serves as an associate in ministry in the Mission Unity Lutheran Parish in Grafton, Iowa.

Karen Hobbs

Lecture Titles: “Finding Grandfather’s Regiment in the Austrian Army”; “German-Bohemian Tract”; “Recruiting Rules of the Austrian Army and Their Affects on Life Decisions of Men Who Served”

Karen Hobbs is an author, lecturer, and independent scholar. She works as a translator of Imperial Austrian military history and of German-Bohemian history, folk culture and tradition. Karen has contributed translations and original articles to various genealogical periodicals. She has been speaker at academic and genealogical conferences in Minnesota, Texas, Nebraska, Wisconsin, Kansas and at the East European conference in Regina, Saskatchewan. Karen lived in Germany for four years in the 1970’s and conducted research trips in 1993 and 1997 to Germany and the Sudeten area of the Czech Republic. Karen has published the book, One Hundred Tales from Sudetenland and is currently working on the Tips for Using the LDS Library Catalog CD.

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Marilyn Cocchiola Holt, MLS

Lecture Titles: “Genealogical Resources in Western Pennsylvania”; “Climbing Your Family Tree: Beginning Genealogy”

Marilyn Cocchiola Holt, MLS, is Department Head of the Pennsylvania Department of the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh of Pittsburgh and Past President and Director of the Western Pennsylvania Genealogical Society. She also currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Genealogical Society of Pennsylvania. Ms. Holt has worked with genealogical patrons for 24 years and has presented numerous programs on local and family history topics, as well as teaching courses on genealogy since 1988.