For articles about the Society's staff
I have been the Society’s part-time Education Officer since May 2015 and from 1 May 2018 also became the Society's part-time Archives Officer. Both roles are combined with studies for the University of New England’s Graduate Diploma in Local, Family and Applied History. I’ve worked with the NSW government as a policy officer and town planner, but began my career as an archaeologist. I started researching my family history when my sister’s Google search suggested that the family was descended from a marine on the Second Fleet.
I work as Archives Officer on Tuesday/Wednesday and as Education Officer Thursday-Saturday, with occasional changes to that roster to accommodate the requirements of our public education program.
I became a member of the SAG in 2003 and started my employment with the Society in 2005 as a part time Receptionist at Rumsey Hall. I now work in the Library at 379 Kent Street, running the Bookshop and hiring FamilySearch films for the members, along with various other duties. These include keeping 379 Kent Street operating on a day-to-day basis and helping volunteers and members deal with the vagaries of the computer systems and different databases and websites we offer.
I have returned to the SAG fold after leaving back in 2008 to pursue a dream opportunity as editor of a niche craft publication. While those years were extremely challenging and incredibly rewarding, print media is, unfortunately, precarious and redundancy inevitable.
Life takes unexpected turns, however, so when the membership position became available, I jumped at the opportunity to return to my family history 'roots'.
After an absence of nearly 10 years, I've noticed that while the systems have changed, the fundamental qualities of the Society - the members and volunteers - haven't. Many of the members I remember are now volunteers, assisting others in the library and sharing the knowledge they've gained, or working on our never-ending indexing and digitising work. But while the lines have blurred somewhat, everyone has been as welcoming on my return as they were when I first started, all those years ago.
I began researching my family history in 1997 while I was completing my BA in Education and my Graduate Diploma Applied Science Library and Information Management. When the position of Librarian at SAG came up in 2004 I jumped at the chance to combine my two great interests. The last ten years have been interesting, challenging and changing - always changing. We changed location, we changed Library Management Systems, Cataloguing Standards changed, the way we do our research and the way we access the records has changed and continues to do so. So there's always a new challenge.
I started tracing my family history when I was 11, and joined the Society in 1979, quickly becoming a volunteer library assistant, index card typist and cemetery transcriber. I'd taken a year off work to do research for my Diploma in Family Historical Studies when in November 1984 I was asked if I'd like some casual employment processing membership renewals and opening mail at the SAG. Within a few days I’d been offered a full-time job and I'm still here. I became Executive Officer in January 1988 and am involved in most facets of the Society's operations; from day to day management to media work, education, and our Diploma & Certificate courses. I was once told you should find out what it is you love to do and then find someone to pay you to do it. I did!
I commenced part time work at the Society in 1990 as an Administrative Assistant to Heather Garnsey. My current role is co-ordinating bookings for SAG Events. I have thoroughly enjoyed my time at SAG and the interaction with staff and the many volunteers I have met over the years. One of my passions has been tracing my family's roots, which has been greatly helped by donations of material by other members of SAG. Away from the Society as a white-water canoeist I have enjoyed the thrill of the river and an appreciation of the natural beauty of Australia. My other passions are teaching Religious Education in our state schools and babysitting my grandchildren.