Officers:

  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., President

Vicky Kolakowski began doing family history research in high school, but put it away until genealogy software became widely available in the 1990s and online databases in the early 2000s. She did not become serious about genealogy until after her election as a state court judge in 2010, when her mother expressed frustration that so many relatives were passing without leaving behind information about the previous generations, and particularly her immigrant ancestors (seven of Vicky's eight great-grandparents were immigrants, and the other was a child of immigrants).
 
  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Vice President

Maureen Hanlon joined The California Genealogical Society after attending “A Day of Irish Information” in 2008. She then became a Desk Duty volunteer, went on the Salt Lake City trip, and last year started doing post-class evaluation surveys for the organization. In addition, Maureen has provided consultations on both Irish and Beginning genealogy at both of our sponsored Ancestry Days events. She also recently fielded and analyzed a CGS Member Survey. In October, she became our coordinator for In-Service Education. Her first job in that capacity was organizing the just completed Beginning Genealogy Series which resulted in four attendees becoming new members.
 
 

Chris Pattillo CFO


A member of CGS since 2004, and previously on the Board, Chris Pattillo is currently the Chair of the Investment Committee. Chris completed two terms as a commissioner on the Oakland Planning Commission, retired from her landscape architecture practice and is ready to rejoin the Board. During her first term as a Board member, Chris wrote the Investment Policy and helped update all of the job descriptions. She also served as Facilities Chair. In 2015 Chris volunteered to co-chair the first Capital Campaign which will conclude in February 2018. Chris has taught classes for CGS and recently gave a talk about her 2017 Genealogy Journey. She has had articles published in The California Nugget, the CGS blog, the Watauga Genealogy Society magazine, as well as a newspaper in Albany, Texas. Chris has presented her Power Point talk, Preserving Your Family History, at local retirement facilities and plans additional presentations throughout the Bay Area to promote the California Genealogical Society.

 
  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., Treasurer

Kathleen Dunn Jones, better known as “Kathie” is now serving as the Treasurer for the society. She has been a member of the California Genealogical Society since 1999. Before joining the society, she owned a specialty toy store for 23 years. As a small business owner, she wore many hats and developed skills in finances, advertising, marketing, display and sales. Kathie has been instrumental in converting the society over to the Wild Apricot database and membership management software program that helps manage our finances as well. It will serve as a platform to allow both the society to grow and to serve our members in many new ways.
 
 
  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., Recording Secretary

Genealogy has been an obsession for Stewart Blandón Traiman for 30 years. He began by interviewing parents, grandparents and other relations about his roots in Nicaragua. He is still hoping to prove the family legend of escaping the Spanish Inquisition. When he married Leland Traiman, 25 years ago, he took on the new adventure researching Ukrainian and Polish Jews. Stewart has also researched his children’s origins back to the colonial United States. Whenever a friend asks, Stewart is happy to trace their family stories and among his family tree collections, he now has 8 trees in perpetual progress.
 
 

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Corresponding Secretary


A box of old family photographs inspired Nancy Cork to begin researching her family's history. After 23 years of gathering records, she still has questions about her family, but now at least they are different questions: not so much the who's and the when's, but the why's and the how's. Born in New York and raised in Minnesota, Nancy has been living in the Bay Area for 35 years. A student of history and a lover of books, she has been volunteering for several years in the CGS Library, where she manages the periodicals subscriptions. Nancy served on the Nominations Committee for two years and enjoys helping with the publication of The California Nugget.

Board of Directors:

 
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Felicia Addison became fascinated by an older sister’s school project and decided at age twelve that she would one day pursue family research. Twenty-seven years later a television commercial for Ancestry.com was the final bug that bit her with an incredible passion for genealogy. By profession, Felicia has been a Customs House Broker for more than twenty years. Felicia has been a member of The African American Genealogical Society of Northern California (AAGSNC) for five years where she’s served on the Outreach and Program committees and is currently the Treasurer.
 
Matt Berry   This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Matthew Berry became interested in family history research in 2003 during a family reunion. He was born in San Diego and grew up in Foster City before attending and receiving a BA and MS from the University of California, Berkeley, and an MBA from Santa Clara University. Now retired from Wells Fargo Bank, Matt has been a member of CGS since 2006, has served as a desk duty volunteer in the past, and has taught several CGS classes on Microsoft Word skills for genealogists. His genealogical research has focused on California, New England and the American mid-west.
 
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Richard Kehoe became interested in family history research years ago during visits with his mother and aunt, listening to their spirited discussions about growing up in San Francisco. Rich is a 6th generation San Franciscan. His ancestors came to San Francisco in 1769 with the Spanish Portola Expedition. He also has extensive Irish roots. Rich did not become obsessed with genealogy until 2010, and discovered CGS two years later, after retiring from a sales and marketing career in the educational technology business. He has been a volunteer with the Educational Programs & Events Committee, and has attended SLIG and taken many of CGS’s wonderful classes, seminars and trips. Rich is a member of UGS, NGS and Los Californianos.
 
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Marisela "Merry" Meskus became interested in genealogy after a family trip to the Dominican Republic in 2004. Her father was born in the Dominican Republic and her mother's family originated from Mexico. She enjoys telling people that she is a first-generation American as well as a second-generation, third-generation, and fourth-generation Californian. Marisela was born in Merced and graduated from the University of California, Merced with a BA in History. She moved to the Bay Area to attend San Francisco State University and obtained an MA in Linguistics in 2015. She joined CGS in April 2017 and took advantage of all the classes and SIGs before deciding to volunteer. Planning to become a professional genealogist, she enjoys coming to the library to learn from members who are as passionate about the subject as she is.
 
Arlene Miles Photo   This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Arlene Georgia Schroeder-Miles A native New Yorker, she’s been a San Franciscan since 1984, when she and her husband, Ted Miles, moved out west. Her credentials include an Associate Degree in Library Technology from City College San Francisco. Prior to retiring and becoming a volunteer with us, she served as an assistant librarian at the Bay Area Air Quality Management District. A member of the society since 2007, she began her genealogy journey in the fourth grade, when she had an assignment to draw a pedigree of three generations. She added her parents, then grandparents and found some hints that maybe there were more people in the family tree... She likes to ‘pay it forward’, by helping others to research and record their families.
 
  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Past President

Linda Harms Okazaki is a fourth generation San Franciscan who has lived all but two years of her life in the Bay Area. Her interest in genealogy began as a hobby in 1998 but has since grown to a personal quest. Linda has been researching her husband’s ancestry for the past several years, documenting his family in the internment camps and in Japan. She is passionate about researching, documenting, teaching, and sharing the stores of Japanese Americans.
 
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James Russell grew up in Connecticut and lives in Berkeley. His paternal ancestors arrived in New England in the seventeenth century and his maternal ancestors had emigrated from Bohemia to Manhattan by 1880. No direct ancestors ever lived west of the Hudson River. His personal areas of concentration are New England, New York and Central Europe. James has done extensive primary research in these places, and has attended institutes at SLIG, IGHR, Gen-Fed and GRIP. He reads Czech, German, Russian, French, Japanese and Latin. He has a BSFS (Georgetown), an MA in Slavic linguistics (Chicago), a PhD in anthropology (London - SOAS) and is very interested in DNA-related issues. James is on the CGS Finance Committee, is a representative to FGS and has participated in CGS-sponsored events for the Japanese-American community in the Bay Area.