I've been back in Seattle since late Saturday, so now it's time to reflect on last week's FGS meetings and what, if anything, my attendance means for the Society. On the plane to Little Rock, I made a list of SGS issues I hoped to get help on at the meetings. These included reversing our declining membership, getting more members involved in Society activities, how to generate revenue from our library, how to keep our board meetings moving [and under 2 hours?], and how to move SGS into the digital age without offending our non-digital members.
I had high hopes that I'd gather a lot of great ideas from other Society movers and shakers. This didn't happen, even though I spent the entire first day in "Society Management" sessions [the only day such sessions were offered]. There just weren't any opportunities to sit down and chat with experienced Society officers. I did meet a great bunch of gals from Dallas [we stayed at the same hotel], but their society has the same problems SGS does, and they haven't found solutions to them either. And I met lots of people from genealogical societies located in small towns. Unfortunately, what works in small towns is not very likely to work in Seattle...is it?
This is not to say attending the FGS meetings was a waste of time. I heard a number of great speakers, learned a few new genealogy research tricks, talked to a number of vendors [which will hopefully yield a few more raffle prizes for October!] and got our Washington Donation Land Claims book scanned for free.
If you've got ideas to help SGS with the issues listed above, please send me your thoughts.