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Caryn Adler
  Ken Baker
  Christine Ballard
  Bill Brandt
  Selma Comstock
  Emily Dood
  Roger Drong
  Joe Ferrara
  Jackie Frank
  Jan Getz
  Bev Grambau
  Sue Grossman
  George Haaf
  Judith Halseth, Ed.D.
  May Hodges
  Kay Horton
  Linda Hull
  Cheryl Ingersoll
  Curt Ingersoll
  Jim Jackson
  Pam Jobin
  Garry L Johnson
  Karen Kott
  Kurt Kremlick Jr.
  Madelynn Locker
  Wayne Loney
  Char Miller
  Shannon Nanninga
  Doris Mettler
  Suzanne Norton
  Sue Pawlak
  Ardis Pierce
  Sue Sanders
  Judy Woolsey
  Tom Wrench
  Janet Wright
 

KVGS Profiles


Caryn Adler

Caryn grew up in Niles Michigan and moved to Kalamazoo in 1978 to attend college. In 1980, as a first anniversary gift to her brother and sister-in-law, she began creating a genealogy chart combining their two families. The anniversary came and went, but Caryn was forever impassioned to research her family tree. To date, there are about 5,600 names in her genealogy database, with one line traced back to the year 1066. In addition to documenting her own family's history, she has assisted others in their research, including her cousin's 74-year old husband who successfully found his birth family.

Caryn also has many other activities that keep her busy, right now she is involved in 2 writing classes for helping genealogist write about events, family members or even themselves if you're interested in doing your own biography.
 
Ken Baker
Ken Baker kelticken@jasnetworks.net
Ken grew up in the Kalamazoo area, leaving for military duty and a few years working for the Federal Government in Illinois. He graduated form Western Michigan University. His career was in aviation safety for 15 years with the Federal Government. He retired from Consumers Concrete as their Director of Safety and Environment and is a former president of KVGS.

Ken is a member of many genealogy and historical societies and has participated and was successful in a DNA surname project with a 37 marker match.

Ken is also an active volunteer with the local food banks.
 
Christine Ballard
Christine Ballard c2ballard@aol.com
 
Bill Brandt
billbrandt60@hotmail.com
Bill has been a member of KVGS for eight years, and has volunteered to help with two of the Genealogy Conferences and the last two Genealogy Saturdays.
About 15 years ago Bill began his genealogical researching by asking his mother to write down on paper the names of his father's siblings and their spouses (nine brothers and three sisters).


This led to researching Wisconsin Germans that immigrated to the US in the 1850s and finding many cousins and helped with his research. His mother's lines go back to the early New England settlers, including three patriots of the Revolutionary War. Bill combines travel with his research, has visited Germany, the LDS Library in Salt Lake City, and has made several trips to the Allen County Public Library in Fort Wayne.

He met his wife Judy while attending WMU. They have two married adult children and two grandchildren.
 
Julie Brenneman
crazycamper58@yahoo.com
Julie has been involved with genealogy work for about seven years, upon moving to Kalamazoo from Battle Creek. After having talked with her parents about 'where did I come from,' Julie wrote an autobiography in elementary school. Now she knows what she could have done.

Julie has attended many of our Fort Wayne bus trips and attended lock-ins at the Kalamazoo Public Library. Her next trip research is to Washington, DC, in October. Julie has been on our Genealogy Saturday committee and also helped with our conferences which were held held at the Fetzer Center. She was also on the cemetery committee. As her interest in genealogy has increased, Julie decided to take on a more active role in our society by joining the board.
 
Selma Comstock
selmacomstock@juno.com
 
Emily Dood
emily.dood@yahoo.com
 
Roger Drong
Roger Drong rfdrong2@yahoo.com
Roger has researched genealogy since 1993 and has a primary interest in Scandinavian countries, which is understandable because his families have their roots in Sweden, Finland, and Poland.  He got his start when he was able to help others who were researching the Scandinavian countries.  A native of Minnesota, he has been in Kalamazoo since 1988.

A retired microbiologist (Upjohn), he likens genealogy to the work he did with DNA research trying to find the connections.  He is single and been a member of KVGS since 2005.
 
Jackie Frank
franknsense1342@gmail.com
 
Joe Ferrara
Joe Ferrara ferrara@btc-bci.com
 
Jan Getz
Jan Getz getzj1980@yahoo.com
Jan has been a member of KVGS since 2000 and has served on the board as President for 2 years, past President for another 2 years, and also served as Chairperson for the Cemetery committee.  She volunteers with Random Acts of Genealogical Kindness (R.A.O.G.K.).  She is a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution (D.A.R.).

In 1980 she had a Kidney Transplant. In 1993 Co-founded Living Organ and Tissue Transplant Support Group (L.O.T.T.S.).  She has held many board positions with L.O.T.T.S. and volunteers with The Gift of Life, Kidney Foundation of Michigan and was on the Transplant Game Committee for 8 years.  She has also volunteered with Girl Scouts of Glowing Embers Council for 25 years.


Jan stated on her genealogy years ago when her grandmother was still alive.  Then it was put on the back burner for some years.  She picked it up again in 1998 and has been at it ever since.
 
Sue Grossman
sue.grossman@emich.edu
 
Bev Grambau
Bev Grambau
Beverly began researching her family history in the 1980‘s and was a member of KVGS for a few years then.  Raising her family of three consumed all her time and energy then so family history was put on the back burner.  When the youngest child went off to college, she rejoined KVGS and resumed her research in earnest.  She was amazed at what the computer/internet age had done to facilitate genealogical research.  It is not uncommon for her to be up late into the night as she finds bits and pieces that fit into her family puzzle.  Her present challenge is to get control of the genealogical papers that have taken control of the dining room table.

As a former government and history teacher, genealogy fits very well with her interests and education.  She received an AM and a MA in education both from the
University of Michigan.  She and her husband Geoff, are diehard Wolverine fans and have been season football ticket holders for over 35 years.
 
George Haaf
 
 
Judith Halseth, Ed.D.
Judith Halseth, Ed.D. judith.halseth@wmich.edu
 
Mary Hodges
Mary Hodges mhodges.ic@icloud.com
 
Kay Horton
Kay Horton mikvgs@yahoo.com
Kay has been interested in genealogy since 1965, but it wasn't until she took Karen Kott's class at the Senior Center in the fall of 2000 that she really got serious about it.  She joined KVGS and purchased a laptop to help her get better organized, although she still has a long way to go on documentation.

On a recent trip in 2005 to England, Kay had an opportunity to visit the Canterbury Cathedral Archives to verify a source and to do research in the Family History Center in London.
 
Linda Hull
Linda J. Hull is an amateur genealogist who was born and raised in Mecosta County, Michigan.  She began researching her family tree in 1976 but with two small children, a busy family life and later a teaching career she dropped her hobby until retirement in 2004. She has been an active member of KVGS since then. You may recognize her name as the person who writes up our programs for the Heritage newsletter. In addition, Linda belongs to the Olin Family Society and the Hull Family Association. She has contributed articles to both of their newsletters.
 
Cheryl Ingersoll
Cheryl Ingersol curt.ingersoll@sbcglobal.net
Cheryl is a new member of KVGS who joined in the fall of 2008.  She retired from the QA office in the Diagnostic Division of Pfizer in 2005. A recent trip to
Philadelphia turned up a biographical sketch of her great-great-grandfather complete with a photograph! She is currently trying to break down a brick wall and trace her roots back to Ireland. There is also a German side to the family. Cheryl is president of the Kalamazoo Shriners Ladies Club.  She has two children, one grandson, with another on the way, all living in this area. She is looking forward to working with the membership to develop interesting programs for the coming year.
 
Curt Ingersoll
Curt Ingersol curt.ingersoll@sbcglobal.net
Curt is a newer member of KVGS who joined in the fall of 2008. He is a Metrologist (not meteorologist) employed at Pfizer. Curt started his early work on his family tree after purchasing a copy of Family Tree Maker (pre-Windows DOS release!) from a sale bin at a local store. At first he simply used the program to keep track of births, marriages, and deaths in the family. As time passed, he began to trace the family history backwards. His family was one of the early pioneers in the Portage area around 1830 and he can now trace his roots in the US to the second voyage of the Mayflower in 1629. Curt is active in a number of non-profit organizations, and is a past Treasurer of the Kalamazoo Shrine organization.
 
Jim Jackson
jjacks01@yahoo.com
Jim has been interested in genealogy and local history since the mid-70s, having served as Past President of the Detroit Society for Genealogical Research, and Past-President of the Oakland County Genealogical Society. He has also been the index editor of the DSGR Magazine since 1994.

In addition to having articles published in Genealogical Computing, Genealogical Helper, and Heritage Quest, Jim has written The Guide to the First Fifty Years of the DSGR Magazine, (selected as one of the 50 most useful genealogical resources by the Michigan Genealogical Council), and The List of Pensioners on CD-ROM published by Heritage Quest.

Jim was honored to receive the 2006 Lucy Mary Kellogg Award from the Michigan Genealogical Council for "significant contribution to the preservation and education of genealogy and history."

Currently Jim is the Vice-President of the Calhoun County Genealogical Society and is also one of the Michigan Genealogical Council delegates for KVGS.
 
Pam Jobin
pamelajobin@yahoo.com
 
Garry L Johnson
elecsprk@att.net
 
Karen Kott
mikvgs@yahoo.com
 
Kurt Kremlick, Jr
Kurt Kremlick, Jr kremlick@juno.com
Kurt has been an active member of the KVGS since 1999, served as Trustee for five years and has been serving as president since his appointment by the Board in January 2007.

Kurt began his genealogical research in the mid 1960s, starting with two handwritten pages from one of his grandmothers and a brief, crude, undated ancestral chart of her family.  Since his retirement as a minister in the Presbyterian church in 1998, he and his wife Fran, have delved deeply into their family histories. One of Fran’s cousins provided them with much help and inspiration.  One of Kurt’s cousins gave him his mother’s family bible which unlocked that part of his family’s tree.  He has, however, yet to discover where his paternal grandparents came from when the arrived in
America in 1866, presumably from Bohemia.  His genealogy files continue to grow as he discovers more about his family and their descendants.

Kurt enjoys helping others get started on their own genealogy research.  He has a working knowledge of the society and how organizations function.  He is looking forward to helping the Society begin its sixth decade in the coming year.
 
Madelynn Locker
mlocker@charter.net
 
Wayne Loney
Wayne Loney wayne@mei.net
Wayne has been a member of KVGS since 1996 and has served as treasurer since 2004. His early research consisted in driving to cemeteries to photograph tombstones.  His wife, Ardis Pierce, convinced him that genealogy as a “cheap hobby” three computers, and trips to Germany, Ireland, Norway, Salt Lake City and Washington D.C., and other places have made her point.  In 2006, his research abilities improved to “heavy book lifter” at the Kalamazoo County Clerks Office, assisting other local researchers, and now he is a permanent fixture there.

Wayne is a retired sergeant from the Kalamazoo Department of Public Safety and has three adult children.  He lives by the credo that genealogy is the science of “disturbing the dead and annoying the living.”
 
Doris Mettler
d.e.mettler@sbcglobal.net
Doris has been a member of KVGS since May 2003, and a member in the late 1970s.

During the recent membership, she volunteered for a number of events for the KVGS including Genealogy Saturday events and the Genealogy Conferences.

Doris has been to several genealogy conferences and also participated in the Portage Civil War reenactment. She been doing genealogy research for about 30 years, but more fervently since she retired. She has been to the "usual" places: the Allen County Public Library in
Fort Wayne, the State Historical Library, twice to Salt Lake City, and the Burton Library. Born in Coldwater, Michigan, and spending the last 39 years in Kalamazoo, Doris has spent much time in the various archives in the area. She has also been chairperson of her church's Mission Committee for four years and continue to be involved with them.
 
Char Miller
cwmille43@yahoo.com
 
Shannon Nanninga
shannonnkvgs@yahoo.com
 
Suzanne Norton
spiritsl33@yahoo.com
 
Sue Pawlak
suvette@aol.com
 
Ardis Pierce
Ardis Pierce

1944-2013
ardis@mei.net
Ardis has been an active member of KVGS since 1990 and has served as a Trustee since January 2007.  Previously she served the Society as membership chair for about five years.  Since 1997, she has volunteered at the Kalamazoo County Clerk’s office on Friday afternoons.  She has also participated in the Rootsweb.com projects in area counties, served as a R.A.O.G.K  (Random Acts of Genealogical Kindness) volunteer for Kalamazoo County, served as the Chapter Regent for the Lucinda Hinsdale Stone Chapter, Daughters of the American Revolution, and is a member of the New England Historic Genealogical Society, Sons of Norway, Norwegian-American Historical Association, Fairbanks Family Association, Friends of Ransom  Library (Plainwell), Friends of Historic East Campus and the Association of Professional  Genealogists.

Many years ago, she assisted her mother by typing a manuscript that recorded family history.  However, she really got hooked after meeting in the 1980s a cousin, who had compiled a notebook of family members.  She now uses a computer to keep track of a huge database of her extended family.  She regularly works online and has made extensive trips nationally and internationally to visit distant relatives and ancestral home sites.

Ardis is a Kalamazoo native who has lived in the Kalamazoo area all her life. She became a police officer with the Kalamazoo Police Department in 1974 and worked up the ranks to Lieutenant and retired as such.  “Genealogy is much like detective work – we should approach it as a detective would.” she says.  She and her fellow genealogist husband Wayne Loney, are very active members of the Parchment United Methodist Church.
 
Sue Sanders
Sue Sanders plainwellsanders@gmail.com
Sue has been working on her family history since 1973 and needs at least another 30 to do the job right.  A retired WMU computer science instructor, Sue has been a member of KVGS since 1996, during which time she has been publicity chair, membership chair, and vice-president.  She has also organized the spring conferences and has been a long-time volunteer at the county clerk's office.

In her other-than-genealogy life, Sue volunteers at the Cheff Center for Therapeutic Horseback Riding and spends lots of time walking her dogs in the woods.

Sue's current obsession is transcribing the Kalamazoo County Poor Farm Books, which she will hopefully finish in her lifetime.
 
Judy Woolsey
Judy Woolsey jwoolsey@schupan.com
Judy has been actively researching her family genealogy since 2004.  As her children got older, she was looking for a hobby on which to concentrate.  She works as an Assistant to the CEO at Schupan & Sons, Inc in Kalamazoo.  Her day job seemed to be a natural extension to filling in for different positions with KVGS, most recently as the Board Secretary and Membership Chairperson.

She has lived in Kalamazoo since 1971 and married to her husband Keith in 1980.  They have three children, two sons and a daughter.  Their oldest son is in the Air Force and is stationed in Japan.  Judy earned a BBA from Western Michigan University (she won't say when).  She has enjoyed being "mentored" by all her new friends at KVGS.
 
Tom Wrench
Tom Wrench twrench3@gmail.com
Tom has been researching his family since the early 1970s.  His grandfather come to the United States from England in 1910, so he has done quite a bit research with the England Census, specifically in Lincolnshire.

Born and raised in Kalamazoo, and has six children between him and his wife Jenny.

Tom has been a member of KVGS since 2006.
 
Janet Wright
JanWright8607@yahoo.com
   

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