42nd AGM

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AAGRA held its 42nd AGM on Monday 9 November 2020 using Zoom videoconferencing.

The following office bearers were re-elected:

  • President – Dr Dianne Snowden
  • Vice President – Rachel Croucher
  • Secretary – Anne Young 
  • Treasurer – Douglas Browning

Jean Main, Peter Gill, Ray Thorburn will continue on the committee. Judy Purkiss and Anita Payne have joined the committee. Elizabeth Parkes has stepped down from the committee.

Dianne Snowden presented the following report to the meeting:

Australasian Association of Genealogists and Record Agents Inc. Annual Report presented to 42nd Annual General Meeting 9 November 2020

It gives me great pleasure to present the President’s Report to the 42nd Annual General Meeting of the Australasian Association of Genealogists and Record Agents.

AAGRA currently has 25 members, an increase of 2 since the last AGM. Welcome to our new members, Caroline Haigh and Phoebe Wilkens. Of our 25 members, 17 are accredited as genealogists; 23 are accredited as record agents; and 16 are accredited as both genealogists and record agents. No members are recorded as inactive. Although we have members from all States except Queensland, the ACT, Northern Territory and New Zealand each have only one member. For me, as President, recruitment remains a fundamental part of the Committee’s work. It is disappointing that so few who have completed the Diploma of Family History at the University of Tasmania have chosen to seek accreditation through AAGRA and this is possibly an area that we, as a Committee, should pursue. We need to persuade these recent graduates of the value of accreditation and membership.

We continue to work on refining our membership applications to make it easier for those seeking membership to understand the type and extent of information required.

Queensland and Western Australia remain the only entities not to have a State representative on the Committee. We welcomed Elizabeth Parkes from New Zealand to the Committee at our 2019 AGM and, as our only New Zealand member, Elizabeth has an important role in promoting the work of AAGRA and making us a truly Australasian organisation. We have yet to establish a way of working effectively with our State and New Zealand representatives and clarifying their role; they are an important promotional conduit.

Thank-you very much to all our Committee members for persevering with those many disruptions which have taken place in the last 12 months. All Committee members make significant contributions to our work and persevere with meeting changes and the frustration of not being able to meet face to face. I thank them all for their support.

Anne Young, our Secretary, conscientiously and meticulously undertakes the many tasks associated with her role. Anne is often the first point of contact for potential members and clients. She fulfils this role superbly.

Douglas Browning, our Treasurer, diligently maintains our books and maintains our strong financial position, ensuring that the Association is viable with its small membership base. Our income is based solely on subscriptions and at June 2020 our income was $1,636.25 with expenses totalling $639.30 and a balance of $996.95. Details can be found in the audited report.

We have been again reviewing our website – thank-you to Anne Young and Rachel Croucher for working on this. The website is one of the main ways we have of communicating with our members and promoting the work of our Association. It is also an important way of connecting with potential clients. Its companion is our Facebook page, which was created on 18 October 2015. Work on the website has been interrupted by external events and I look forward to the resumption of its development in 2021.

We continue to work on links with other professional genealogical organisations but, again, this has been complicated by the onset of the pandemic.

Since our AGM on 19 November 2019, our ability to meet has been hindered by external factors. We held our first ZOOM meeting on 28 September 2020 and this proved a successful way to conduct meetings.

In the coming year, once again, I see the three most important issues as recruitment, encouraging accreditation and promotion of the Association as widely as possible. Living in Tasmania I know well the difficulties of isolation and I hope that we can find a way of bringing all our members, not just the Committee, together at least once a year. Our Association is only as strong as its membership and I look forward to continuing to work with you.