DNA expert visits Genealogical Society


The Fayette County Genealogical Society met Oct. 17 with Kelli Bergheimer, a DNA expert from Powell, presenting the program, “What You Need to Know About the 5 DNA Companies.”

The five DNA companies are Ancestry, 23andMe, MyHeritage, LivingDNA, and FamilyTreeDNA. Kelli presented each company giving the specialties that each company could give while doing DNA research. Those present were given a handout showing the percentages of DNA individuals share with their parents, siblings, grandparents, great-grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, and so forth down through your family tree.

Family trees need to be used while using DNA during genealogical research as the percentage of DNA can be similar for different relationships. A grandparent and a cousin could both share about 25 percent of DNA with you as would a half sibling. Therefore, a family tree that would give other factors such as age, other family ties and history would be needed to determine the relationship someone would have to you.

Kelli Bergheimer is a writer, teacher, editor, and a national genealogical speaker. Kelli holds a bachelor’s in biology, master’s in education: curriculum and instruction, and a master’s in business management. Kelli is a director of curriculum and assessments for Blue Kayak, a K-12 textbook company. She also works as a DNA report editor for Legacy Tree Genealogists and is a contributor for Your DNA Guide.

Kelli owns two small businesses: Geo-centric Learning and Mess on the Desk, a genealogical organizational company with a YouTube channel and online store. Kelli is the facilitator for Genetics, Genealogy, and You, an online DNA interest group. She is a member of the Association of Genealogists and Genealogical Speaker’s Guild. The society is fortunate to have Kelli as a yearly DNA guest speaker.

The next meeting of the Fayette County Genealogical Society will be Monday, Nov. 21 in the downstairs meeting room of the Economic Development Building, 101 E. East St., Washington Court House at 7 p.m. Parking is beside the building off East Street. Members and their guests will be able to enjoy a game of Fayette County Genealogical history and Fayette County Historical Facts.

For information concerning this meeting, Society membership, Lineage Societies Membership, or research, please contact Cathy Massie White, lineage chair, at 740-333-7227, or [email protected], Sue Gilmore, president, at 614-864-9609 or [email protected], or Peggy Lester, research chair, at 740-495-5720 or [email protected].

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