IAJGS 2016

Welcome to the website of the 36th IAJGS International Conference on Jewish Genealogy in Seattle, Washington, USA.

The Conference App is live!

The Conference mobile app now is available for all iPhone/iPad and Android devices, and for any computer with Internet access.

Download it now and create your personal schedule, meet up with friends, check out that speaker’s bio, or post your own photos! Find that SIG you’ve wanted to connect with on the SHARE Fair map in the Maps section or find out more about local genealogy research sources in the Info Pages section. Other uses:

  • Stay organized with up-to-the-minute Exhibitor, Speaker, and Event information
  • Receive important real-time communications from the IAJGS
  • Bookmark exhibitors
  • Take notes and download event handouts and presentations
  • Rate the sessions you attend and comment on them, too
  • Locate sessions on the Sheraton Seattle Hotel
  • Stay in-the-know and join in on social media with #iajgs2016

Already have the App?

If you already have the app, look for the Show List and tap the forward icon for the 36th IAJGS Conference . . .  (You may need to update the list by tapping the double-arrow icon at the top.)

If last year’s show is on the screen, tap the Home icon at the top left corner and then the Exit to Show List arrow in the Dashboard. You’ll see this year’s show under “Upcoming Events.” (You may need to update the list by tapping the double-arrow icon at the top.)

Downloading the App

Scan this.



If scanning the code above doesn’t work for you, try one of the following methods.

  • Use this link: Point your Apple or Android device to
  • Search the App Store or Google Play for “IAJGS International Conferences”
  • Click one of these buttons.

Mobile Event App for 36th IAJGS International Conference

Mobile Event App for 36th IAJGS International Conference

Mobile Event App for 36th IAJGS International Conference

  • All Other Device Types (including BlackBerry, Windows, and all other web browser-enabled devices):

While on your smartphone, point your mobile browser to l.core-apps.com/iajgs_conferences to be directed to the proper download version for your phone.

Once you have downloaded and opened the app, choose 36th IAJGS and tap Download.

If you already have the IAJGS Conferences mobile app with the 2015 app open, go to settings and tap Exit to Show List. Choose 36th IAJGS then tap download.

Syncing  multiple devices

You can download the App to more than one device – even to iOS and Android devices – and have them sync your settings and saved content, including your personal schedule. You may want to use a laptop in your room and carry a smartphone in the Conference area. Here are instructions for syncing them:

  • Choose one as your first device. Tap the Settings icon (looks like a gear) and tap Multi Device Sync.
  • Tap First Device and enter your e-mail address and a password of your choosing.
  • On the other device, repeat this process but tap Additional Device instead of First Device.

The devices will sync on refresh, which you can force by tapping the Refresh button (circled arrows) on the dashboard of either device. It won’t matter which one you enter the information on; all will show up on both devices after a sync.

Getting help

Please do not write to Conference leaders! Help is available from 7 a.m. Eastern to 10 p.m. Eastern, seven days a week, at support@core-apps.com

Late Saturdays and Sundays, response may be slower. But they promise they will get back to you.

Let us know how you like this year’s Conference App!

Sincerely,Janette Silverman
Chuck Weinstein
Phyllis Grossman
Conference co-chairs

On-line registration is closed. See you in Seattle!

On-site registration and check-in at the hotel opens on Saturday, August 6, 2016, at 7 p.m. For a complete schedule, look here: https://s4.goeshow.com/iajgs/annual/2016/register_conference.cfm#onsite
For registration matters that cannot wait until then, please write to registration@iajgs2016.org

New Promo Video for IAJGS LIVE!

There’s still plenty of time to sign up for IAJGS LIVE! and watch along with the conference attendees, or you can watch On Demand after the conference has ended. Check out our new Promo Video on the LIVE! page.

Surname data’s final deadline

The deadline has been extended to July 10  for you to update  data on your family surnames and towns of origin for your Conference name badge.  After that, any changes you make will be reflected in the IAJGS Conference Online Family Finder, but not on your badge.

Important: It’s not enough just to enter your data in JewishGen’s Family Finder database. You need to import the information for your badge and the IAJGS Conference Online Family Finder, using the link  that looks like this in one of our emails to you:


More information: http://www.iajgs2016.org/familyfinder/

Roommate match-ups

If you are holding a reservation at the Sheraton Seattle, and you are seeking a roommate, please drop a note to our meeting planner, Zabrina Hazeltine, at zhazeltine@hgmp.com. Zabrina is gathering information from people who have registered for the conference but can’t book a reservation because rooms are sold out. While we expect cancellations, some people may prefer to share a room instead of waiting for a vacancy.

Hotel reservations update

As of June 6, 2016
The block of rooms set aside for Conference attendees is sold out, and so is the rest of the Sheraton Seattle.

Read more . . .

If you have no reservation, please send a note to our meeting planner, Zabrina Hazeltine, at zhazeltine@hgmp.com, with a cc to registration@iajgs2016.org.

Another approach is to shop through online hotel discount finders. This can be a hit-or-miss experience, and to hold a booking, you may be required to pay a no-refund rate up front. It’s often a good idea to purchase trip-cancellation insurance, especially when you pay your hotel bill in advance. We can’t recommend a specific vendor, but here are two Internet sites that compare rates among many providers: www.insuremytrip.com and www.squaremouth.com.

The online Family Finder is live!

The 2016 IAJGS Conference Online Family Finder is running, with more than 6,000 ancestral surname/town/country listings from those who had registered for the conference by July 1. The final  update will be after July 10.

If you haven’t registered for the Conference, you can’t use the Family Finder yet. After you register, your confirmation email will have instructions for getting started.

For those who have registered to attend
To start, go to the URL http://iajgs.org/familyfinder/famfind.html
and enter your surname and your Conference password. That’s the one in your Conference registration confirmation email, something like this: HMQR7842. Your JewishGen login password will not work here. Tip: Be sure “caps lock” is not turned on when you type numbers. Copy/paste may pick up an extraneous space before or after your password.

Read more . . .

Seattle Jewish Theater Co. presents ‘From Door to Door’

The newest addition to the Conference lineup is a performance of the highly acclaimed play, “From Door to Door,”  by the Seattle Jewish Theater Company.

Written by award-winning playwright James Sherman and directed by SJTC artistic director Art Feinglass, “From Door to Door” follows the lives of three generations of a family of Jewish women, from impoverished immigrant to successful American.

The heart-warming, bittersweet comedy takes its title from the Hebrew song L’dor V’dor, or From Generation to Generation.

The performance is scheduled for the evening of Tuesday, August 9, in the Grand Ballroom and will be followed by an audience discussion with the director and cast.  Attendance, at no additional cost, is only for those who registered for the full Conference or for Tuesday.

$10 rebate offered for JRI-Poland luncheon

A very generous donation pledge to the Conference has lowered the price of the JRI-Poland luncheon on Sunday, August 7, by $10 for everyone who attends. Instead of $54 per person, this luncheon will cost $44.

For new sign-ups, a $10 instant rebate will be automatically applied at checkout.

Those who have already signed up and paid by credit card for the JRI-Poland luncheon will receive a $10 refund to their card accounts. We will send a new registration confirmation email, and the refund should appear in the card account within a few days thereafter. Those who paid by check will receive a new confirmation email and a refund check in postal mail.

You don’t have to do anything to claim your rebate. Please do not send an inquiry unless you haven’t heard anything by May 30.

The two benefactors behind this subsidy for the JRI-Poland luncheon wish to remain anonymous.

See the Conference schedule

It contains some 325 events during the week – lectures, presentations, meal events and computer workshops – nearly 250 of them hosted by a speaker or panel. See it by selecting CONFERENCE SCHEDULE from the PROGRAM menu above.

It’s an interactive listing you can use to search by title, keyword, speaker’s name and session date, or just to scroll from A to Z – or rather, from Saturday, August 6, to Friday, August 12.

And watch for the launch of our mobile Conference application. The app will let you browse and search the list, build and update your personal daily schedule, get in touch with other conference-goers and receive updates about new developments and schedule changes.

The schedule is preliminary, and changes are likely over the next few months – even up to the day of the event – so be sure to watch for announcements and check back from time to time.

Register now for meals and workshops

Options include:

  • SIG and JewishGen luncheons
  • Friday night Shabbat dinners
  • The Gala banquet
  • Computer workshops
  • Daily box lunches

If you are already registered for the conference, log in to the Attendee Service Center with your email address and the password from your registration confirmation, and update your registration.

See the Program Schedule for details, or read the separate pages on computer workshops (http://www.iajgs2016.org/computer-workshops) and luncheons (http://www.iajgs2016.org/sigluncheons/).

New this year! Genealogy for Jewish Educators

This is a special, one-day track designed for those who

  • teach in synagogue and Jewish day schools
  • run camp and other programs
  • create family and inter-generational events, or
  • teach Jewish history or family history

It will be in Seattle Sunday, August 7, 2016, beginning at 9 a.m. during the week-long 36th IAJGS International Conference on Jewish Genealogy. Thanks to the generosity of the Samis Foundation and the Covenant Foundation, the registration fee is just $50 per person. To attend the full conference and Genealogy for Jewish Educators, the combined fee is $395 during online registration through July 24, $10 more on-site.

The program includes

  • six workshops led by genealogy professionals
  • an interactive Learning Walk through family history research skills and techniques
  • kosher breakfast and lunch
  • free access to many afternoon events of the main Conference
  • the Conference Film Festival’s Sunday screenings, and
  • the evening Conference Keynote Address and reception

For more information and to register for Genealogy for Jewish Educators, go here.

Sleepless in Seattle? Not this August

Co-chair Chuck Weinstein provided a preview of our conference to IGRA in March, 2016.

Promote your brand to conference-goers

Becoming an advertiser, exhibitor or sponsor will focus attention on your company or organization from about 1,000 people we are expecting during the week of the Conference – individual researchers, service providers, groups and associations in the forefront of an ever-growing world of research into Jewish family history.

Opportunities range from inserting printed materials into every attendee’s conference bag to putting your logo in prominent places and to showing your wares or promoting your services in the exhibit hall for the duration of the Conference. For details, click the links under the EXHIBIT, ADVERTISE, SPONSOR tab in the menu bar above.

Winners in early registration prize drawing announced

Leaders of the 36th IAJGS International Conference on Jewish Genealogy have announced the winners of 10 prizes awarded in a random drawing of names among those who registered for the conference by April 30.

The winners and their respective prizes are:

  • David Penrod, Orem, Utah: an FTDNA Family Finder DNA test
  • Adrienne Escoe, Irvine, California: an Ancestry.com one-year Worldwide Explorer membership
  • Leilani Lucrisia, Arlington, Washington: an Ancestry.com autosomal DNA test
  • William Israel, St. Petersburg, Florida: a MyHeritage.com one year subscription
  • David Fialkoff, North Potomac, Maryland: an Avotaynu journal one year subscription
  • Philis Curlender, Los Angeles, California: a three-night stay at the Salt Lake City Plaza Hotel
  • Jane Berenbeim, New York, New York: a JewishGen value-added one year subscription
  • Robert Aisenberg, Dartmouth, Massachusetts: a BackBlaze cloud file backup one year subscription
  • Cynthia Campman, The Woodlands, Texas: a MacKiev Family Tree Maker software for Mac
  • Teresa Pollin, Washington, D.C.: a MacKiev Family Tree Maker software for PC

The winners must be registered and attend the conference in Seattle. Any forfeited prizes will be awarded in a subsequent drawing.

More will be awarded to conference attendees during the week. The prize list will be announced then.

Online registration runs through July 24. Fees will be higher for those who wait until they arrive in Seattle and register on site.

The IAJGS Conference Online Family Finder

Use the FAMILY FINDER link in the menu bar above to read about this year’s searchable IAJGS Conference Online Family Finder.

If you haven’t registered yet, when you’re ready,  go to the Registration home page from the link in the REGISTRATION menu above, or click here.

Before you begin the registration form, you also should at least glance over the wide range of vital information and guidance on the Registration Overview page. Look for a link on the Registration home page.

Conference fees

For a downloadable summary list of fees and optional item prices before entering the form, go to the Registration Overview page or click here.

Focus: The Wandering Jew

The focus for the 2016 conference is The Wandering Jew.

Tracks will include:

  • The Sephardic Experience in the United States
  • European Migrations
  • South American, Australian and South African Branches
  • Westward Ho! Jews in the Western US
  • Coming Home to Israel

Please come back here over the next few months for program updates and other news, follow us on Facebook, subscribe to our discussion list and follow our blog.

Recorded sessions

You can still subscribe to Seattle 2016 LIVE!, our real-time video streaming service. A separate recording service, a combination of audio and speakers’ slides in digital format to be delivered to you after the Conference, will cost more if you wait until August to sign up. For details, go to LIVE! AND RECORDINGS in the menu bar above.