Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy Scholarship Winners Announced

The Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy is pleased to announce that five attendees have been awarded scholarships for upcoming courses in the Fall of 2019 and January 2020.

The Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy is pleased to announce that five attendees have been awarded scholarships for upcoming courses in the Fall of 2019 and January 2020.

The Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy is pleased to announce that five attendees have been awarded scholarships for upcoming courses in the Fall of 2019 and January 2020.

Laura G. Prescott Scholarship Winners

Eileen Ó Dúill and Julie Parillo were selected as the first recipients of the Laura G. Prescott SLIG Scholarship. Tuition to their course of choice at the 2020 Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy (SLIG) or the 2020 SLIG Academy, plus hotel accommodations, will be paid out of scholarship funds generously donated by the genealogical community. Though designed to be awarded to one candidate annually, the scholarship is being doubled to celebrate its inaugural year.

The scholarship honors Laura G. Prescott, a genealogy professional who enriched the field with her talents as a teacher, writer, researcher, mentor, society leader and volunteer, and as director of Ancestry Academy—Ancestry’s collection of instructional webinars presented by leading genealogical educators. Laura was also especially known for her bright smile, positive attitude, and encouraging nature.

Scholarship winners are chosen by committee with Laura’s attributes in mind. Their short essay applications include information about what they hope to gain from attending SLIG, why they deserve the scholarship (not necessarily financial reasons), and how they intend to use what they learn. Those chosen embody Laura’s passion for and service to the genealogical community and thus will further her legacy.

Eileen Ó Dúill is known to many in the genealogy field, as she has been a professional Irish genealogist since 1990, specializing in legal and probate research. She is a founding member of the Irish Probate Genealogy Partners. As a member of the Association of Professional Genealogists, Eileen served on the APG board as the International Trustee for Britain and Ireland from 2007 to 2012 and received the APG Professional Achievement Award in 2016. She has lectured nationally and internationally and presented the Ancestry Academy webinar on Beginning Irish Research. Eileen has faced personal adversity with positivity and displays a passion to return as an active member of the genealogical community.

Julie Parillo is secretary for the Rockdale-Newton County Genealogical Society in Georgia and volunteers at the Henry/Clayton County Genealogical Society’s Brown House. She is a member of the Georgia Genealogical Society, the National Genealogical Society, and the Association of Professional Genealogists, and says she frequents as many seminars and watches as many webinars as possible to expand her knowledge. Julie’s passion for genealogy is clear when she says, “Genealogy not only offers me a glimpse into the lives of past ancestors, but will connect me to generations of the future. My goal is to enrich my part of the genealogical world as effectively as possible.”

More about the Laura G. Prescott Scholarship

First-Time Institute Attendees Winner

Julie Johns Defrancesco, resident of Bozeman, Montana, was selected as the winner for the SLIG Scholarship for First-Time Institute Attendees for 2020.

The competition was strong and many candidates submitted worthy applications. The committee determined that Ms. Defrancesco’s application effectively conveyed her desire for a more in-depth learning experience at an intermediate (or above) level.

Julie was born the fifth of five children in La Verne, California to a family with rich Italian, Swiss, French and Irish heritage. Three of her grandparents immigrated to this country between 1906-1929. The fourth grandparents’ line extends to this country’s earliest European settlers.

Her love for genealogical research began at the age of 17 on a trip to the Family History Library in Salt Lake City in 1978. From that time to this, Julie has taken advantage of every opportunity to learn about family history. Her desire to discover more about her family line has inspired a hunger to learn everything there is to know about genealogical research. She has attended local LDS conferences, interviewed family members, participated in BYU Home Study Courses in Genealogy, and attended countless conferences and online courses. She is an annual participant in RootsTech.

Her desire to learn more about her ancestry inspired Julie to make pilgrimages to Europe and the British Isles in search of more and better information and to become acquainted with the land, culture and the people that figure so prominently in her heritage.

Julie loves sharing her discoveries with her large family of 5 siblings, 22 nieces and nephews, 38 great nieces and nephews, and an ever growing list of newly discovered relatives! “It is so gratifying to see them soak up the information I share at reunions and family gatherings and ask questions about their ancestors.” Twenty-five years ago in an effort to better share her research and unite her extended family, Julie began a quarterly newsletter called “A Common Thread”.

Today, “A Common Thread” has become a well-received family ancestry blog to which she posts weekly. “I’ve learned so much and reconnected with family members, each of whom has added a few more strands to our family tapestry. I have such a love of family…those living, and those past. But, there is more to learn and more to discover.”

Julie has a strong desire to broaden her knowledge and skills, and by so doing extend her family line and help others to do so; rarely does a guest leave her home without discussing their family history, and in some instances receiving a brief tutorial to help them get started in their research!

Julie currently lives in the Gallatin Mountains near Bozeman, Montana with Steve, her husband of thirty-six years, their German Shepherd Lucia, and frequent guests. These guests include not only family and friends, but deer, elk, bear, moose and even mountain lions. The quiet, peaceful solitude of this alpine setting is ideal for long hours of computer research and reflection on generations past.

More about the First-Time Institute Attendee Scholarship

Jimmy B. Parker Scholarship Winner for 2020

Melody Daisson, resident of Payson, Utah, was awarded the UGA Jimmy B. Parker Scholarship for SLIG 2020.

Named in honor of Jimmy B. Parker, whose legacy of service to the genealogical community covered more than 50 years, this scholarship is awarded to an individual who has “demonstrated commitment to genealogical excellence and community involvement.”

The competition was strong and many candidates submitted worthy applications. The committee determined that Ms. Daisson’s application exemplified the culture of giving back to the community as demonstrated by Jimmy B.Parker.

Melody Daisson is an Accredited Genealogist in the Southeast Region of the United States. Melody graduated from Brigham Young University with a degree in family history and has 25 years of research experience She works as a professional genealogist at Family Locket. Melody is also on the online remote faculty at Brigham Young University Idaho and teaches FHGEN 112: Family History Research—Part 2: Analysis of Research Evidence. She wrote the Southern Research and African-American course modules for a U.S. Specialty Region Course at Brigham Young University-Idaho. Melody serves on the ICAPGen Study Group Committee as the curriculum designer and peer review lead for the Level 1 study group. Melody’s genealogical passions are Southern Research and genealogical writing.

More about the Jimmy B. Parker Scholarship

Intermediate Foundations Scholarship Winner for Fall 2019

Carly Morgan, resident of Murray, Utah was selected for the the SLIG Intermediate Foundations Scholarship for Fall 2019.

New this year, this scholarship reaches out to those who haven’t yet attended an institute that need to strengthen their research knowledge and skills at an intermediate level in order to prepare to attend future institutes.

The competition was strong and many candidates submitted worthy applications. The committee determined that Ms. Morgan’s application exemplified the need to move her skills to an intermediate level.

Carly has engaged in genealogical research for the last ten years and writes about genealogy at Her personal family research is focused on the Polish community in Chicago, the Chinese community in San Francisco, and her colonial roots in Pennsylvania and Massachusetts. She is pursuing further education in genealogy to continue writing with a particular focus on family storytelling and digital genealogy.

More about the Intermediate Foundations scholarship

About the Author

Thomas MacEntee
Genealogy educator and author Thomas MacEntee has been researching his family history for more than 40 years and is the creator of Abundant Genealogy, Genealogy Bargains, DNA Bargains, The Genealogy Do-Over and numerous other web-based genealogy and family history properties.