Wednesday, August 31, 2016

A new chart that is already quite popular

We showed off a pretty new chart this summer at the BYU conference. We combined two "branches" trees to complete a wedding chart.  The wife's ancestry is on the right and the husband's on the left.  I think we had more comments on this chart at the conference than we have ever had on any chart we've ever shown. 
 We can add children as flowers or in the grass along the bottom, and we can change up the coloring or anything you want to do. 

Let us know if you want one for your own family.  You can just send us your file at and we can send you a mock up to preview.  We'd love to create a beautiful chart for you. 

Monday, August 29, 2016

Announcing: GenealogyDOTcoach

As you know, for us it has always been about making genealogy easier for everyone and helping people understand how important it is.  We think this is a game changer that will really help.  Introducing GenealogyDOTcoach

Press Release:
New Genealogy Service Poised to Fill Critical Gap in Genealogy Industry

CEDAR HILLS, Utah - August 29, 2016 - A new family history service launched today that will fill a critical gap in the multi-billion dollar genealogy industry.  genealogyDOTcoach (SM) is a new online service that matches up professional genealogists (called Genealogy Coaches) with people who want to have all the fun of making family history discoveries for themselves but just need a little assistance from someone they can trust.

"With do-it-yourself sites like and it has become so easy for anyone to start climbing their family tree," says co-founder, Janet Hovorka.  "But, sometimes people get a little stuck in the process.  The traditional option at that point has been to purchase a 10 or 20 hour research package from a professional genealogist.  Many people can't afford that kind of help.  Others are reluctant to do so because they want the joy of making those family history discoveries themselves.  genealogyDOTcoach aims to fill that gap."

The service launches with 25 coaches across 47 different categories.  Topics include:  getting started; genetic genealogy/DNA; tree analysis and writing a research plan; and document translation.  Coaches also specialize in research for different regions of the world and different ethnic groups.  The initial group of coaches have an average of 25 years of training and experience a piece.  They are researchers, authors, and lecturers.  The impressive list of coaches includes some of the most well-known genealogists in the industry.

On the genealogyDOTcoach website, users can select a topic and see a list of coaches who specialize in that topic.  They can review comments and ratings from previous clients, to help them select a coach they would like to work with.  Sessions can be scheduled for 15, 30 or 60 minutes.  Pricing starts as low as $15 for 15 minutes.

Shortly before the coaching session, an email link is sent that allows the user to log in to a private video chat room.  There they meet face to face, via video chat, to share screens and documents with the genealogy coach, and receive the help they need to keep them moving along in their family history journey.

"Clients leave the coaching sessions with a game plan for how to move forward in their family history research," says Hovorka.  "Just like life coaches or athletic coaches, genealogy coaches can give you the boost you need to be better at what you enjoy."

About genealogyDOTcoach
Complete listing of coaches with their bios found here:

Friday, August 26, 2016

Two new wonderful additions to the Family ChartMasters team

This summer we were lucky enough to find two more wonderful people to help us with your genealogy charts.  We'd like to introduce you to:

Lynette Salmond

Lynnette is a California girl from Cupertino, home of Apple Computers, before they were born, when it was the home of prune and apricot trees. At 23, she served a humanitarian mission in Paraguay where she gained a desire to help children in need. She met and married her husband nearly 30 years ago in California and soon discovered that, as children, they had attended the same family reunion.  She started researching her genealogy and found where their family trees had merged a few generations back.  She earned her BS at BYU in Sociology Education, with a minor in Spanish Education and graduated when she was pregnant with her second child.  After graduation, she and her sweetie returned to the Bay Area where they stayed for 15 years.  They soon became foster parents and have adopted 5 of their foster children. Life is always an adventure at their house.  They moved to Utah 10 years ago when the economy in California started to swing and they haven't looked back. She is now a grandmother and is excited for the adventures yet to come.


Karli Ledkins

Karli was born and raised in Utah. She met her wonderful husband 16 years ago and has 2 amazing children. She came from a big family, which is very close, but knew she wanted a small one. One girl...the perfect balance. She loves spending time with family and does not often go anywhere without her children. They love the outdoors and spending time fishing, 4-wheeling, hiking and exploring new places. She loves anything crafty and often spends hours creating fun projects. Karli got the genealogy bug about 4 years ago. She loves researching and is excited to find new stories, photos, and especially ancestors. Always thinking her family history was complete, she was pleasantly surprised to find there was much work to be done!  She loves working on her own family history and is equally excited to be helping others with their own charts!

Both of these delightful ladies are ready to help you create the perfect expression of your family's history.  Let us know what you are envisioning on our free consultation page.  

Thursday, August 25, 2016

What I did for summer "vacation"

Took lots of these to the post office.
Well, I've never worked so hard in my life.  That's what I did.  My last post seems like eons ago and I've done almost no other social networking either. But I'm back now and I've missed it. I've had my nose to the grindstone.  We did take a few short breaks, but I'm glad we had that great break with the Roudabushes in May because we were about to pay for it.

We have had the busiest summer ever at Family ChartMasters.  Yea!  We hired two new employees (next post tomorrow) who we had to just throw in the mix and let them swim for it.  We didn't even have any time to train them.  But they've done beautifully and we're excited to have them. Double Yea!!  It is so delightful to be able to help so many people create amazing family history displays for their family reunions. We're excited to share some of the beautiful charts we've done here soon too. 

We had a great time talking with everyone at SCGS and at the BYU conferences.  Those conferences are busy but they don't seem like work because we love visiting with you all so much.  And I did get to run away up to Sundance one blissful night with Lisa Louise Cooke.  The kids have been busy with Eagle Scout Projects, humanitarian trips, cosmetology school and learning to drive so it has been exciting around here. 

But the biggest thing I've been working on is a new project that I am super excited about.  We will be making announcements on Monday and I can't wait to tell you about it.  It is something we're so passionate about, we have been working all day for Family ChartMasters and then Kim and I have been working all night on this new thing.  So stay tuned...  We've got some big news coming down the pike..... 

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

We're back and ready to go.

1) Thank you to the National Genealogical Society for having their 2016 national conference in Fort Lauderdale Florida, thus causing everyone to look into cruise schedules.  

2) Thank you to Erin Roudabush for almost 10 years of amazing service to our clients and her great commitment to helping each family express their heritage in a beautiful way. 

3) Thank you to Erin's husband Scott for his unwavering support for Erin's hectic schedule and loyal work ethic. 

4) Thank you to Royal Carribean for taking us to beautiful places and pampering us with great service, fun activities, and delicious food. 

5) and a BIG thank you to Christine and Linda for keeping things humming and running smoothly at home.  (And another BIG thank you to my parents for keeping everyone and everything running smoothly at our home home.)

We are back now, rested and ready for a busy family reunion season. You can send us your family information at  We're looking forward to designing and printing the perfect chart for you!!

Monday, April 25, 2016

Online Genealogy Courses at Salt Lake Community College: GEN1000 and GEN1014

Sign up here

I've just finished teaching the first semester of my new course "Making Money in Genealogy" at SLCC and I want to tell you about the two genealogy courses I teach for the genealogy program at Salt Lake Community College.  They keep me fresh and focused on the needs of genealogists as I get to work with wonderful students.  The program teaches you to become an excellent genealogist and are all taught entirely online.  In fact the entire SLCC program is academically rigorous and you can receive college credit while you are sharpening  your family history skills.  Now is the time to sign up for summer term  if you are interested.  I'd love to have you join us. 

I've been teaching GEN 1000 "Computer & Internet Tools for Genealogy" for 6 years now and I think it is a fantastic way for anyone to bring their genealogy technology skills up to date.  Kelly Summers and I wrote it together and we came up with a program that works for beginners as well as seasoned genealogists who just need to brush up on their tech skills.  After learning about basic genealogy research and documentation standards and how to enter your research into genealogy software, students use census and vital records to carefully document their own lives, their parents and their grandparents.  There are lessons about picture tagging and restoration, oral interviews, and internet publishing and sharing, and then the midterm project is just to take 6 hours to do something that needs to be done in your family along those lines.  After learning about continuing education opportunities and watching a webinar, and then surveying software and mobile apps, the final project is simply to turn in the three generation research compiled into software generated reports with complete documentation.  Grades are based on methodology, not the amount of research completed.  Most genealogists I know haven't taken the time to completely document the first three generations of their family and by the time the student is finished, they are ready to move forward with excellent technology and documentation skills.

Then, the new course I've just developed is GEN 1014, "Making Money in Genealogy."  This is the course I wish I had had 12 years ago when we started Family ChartMasters.  I've poured all of the things I've learned into this course to save the students all the learning curve I've had to overcome.  We survey genealogy opportunities and the structure of running  your own business and then the second half of the course is all about marketing (something all genealogists can improve on.)  By the end of the course you have written a complete business plan, begun branding, and interviewed a professional genealogist.  I think the course has everything students need to get started on the right track to becoming a successful genealogy professional. 

You can take either course for credit or as an audit and seniors who live in Utah can take each course for only $10.  The entire genealogy program at SLCC is an excellent curriculum that unfortunately is not very well known in the national genealogy community.  Hopefully that will change soon.  The program is designed to prepare students for credentialing with ICAPGEN or BCG and has fantastic instructors. There are 13 courses and you can complete enough in one year to obtain a certificate of completion. I've really enjoyed working with Kelly, Karen Clifford, and Sharon DeBartolo Carmack.  They are excellent genealogists and wonderful people.  I can highly recommend this program to anyone who is serious about becoming an excellent genealogist. 

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Customer Testimonial By Geneablogger True Lewis From NoTeS To MySeLf

We love it when our customers are thrilled with our work.
At RootsTech 2016, we met geneablogger True Lewis who writes about her slave and European ancestors on her blog, NoTeS To MySeLf.  She set up an appointment with a personal designer at the conference and we were able to talk about different options for her custom chart.

True shared the positive experience she had with Family ChartMasters in a recent post from her blog and granted us permission to link to her blog in addition to sharing her thoughts here.

She says:
"I love looking for different genealogy products that will make my family history research stand out.  I'm always looking for something detailed and special for my family...I attended RootsTech 2016 in Salt Lake City, Utah.  I made my appointment to meet with a consultant 2 weeks in advance.  I met Ms. Janet on a Thursday...We discussed and went over ideas i had on how we could make this chart come to life.  This is the end product of what I had in mind."

She enjoyed how easy it was to work with Family ChartMasters. "I was able to choose every detail on this chart.  It was very personalized.  It came out to have a total of 35 pictures.  A Bible verse.  Trimming, edging and sepia background.  The size is 24" x 36" in stature.  There is no limit to what you can do for your chart...It arrived fast and in a shipping tube."

As we work with our clients, we are happy to help you get your genealogy chart exactly the way you want it and it shows.  True writes, "They were very patient with me in getting all the details from my tree I keep on I had a few revisions and they worked with every move I made...I'm excited about presenting this to the family. It feels so good to see all that I have come from....I can't even express my thanks to Family ChartMasters and their staff for making this masterpiece for me.  It will be cherished for centuries to come.  Thank you for all your patience, kindness and professionalism through the whole process."

True's experience with us made us smile. We would love to help you with your family history chart as well. Take a look at our gallery for ideas and inspiration and then visit our website for a free consultation.  We want to help you create the perfect chart for your family.