LaDonna Garner, CG
LaDonna Garner, CG is a historic preservationist, researcher, and volunteer focusing in the Southeastern Missouri area. She is the St. Louis Genealogical Society’s African American Special Interest Group Leader, and a member of several organizations including the Association of Professional Genealogists, the Association for Gravestone Studies and the National Trust for Historic Preservation.
Board-Certified in Genealogy in 2006, Garner has been researching her family history for nearly 30 years. Her current focus surround projects of recording the history of cemeteries in Missouri African-American communities, client assistance in genealogical brickwalls and consultations in historic landscape preservation. Her passion for cemetery preservation was inspired by her interest in family lineage and role as Founder/Secretary of the Mt. Zion Cemetery Board to preserve Mount Zion Cemetery, Festus, Missouri which was established by African American settlers in the circa 1880s and closed in circa 1973.
She is former vice president and editor of Jefferson County (Missouri) Genealogical Society and a member of St. Louis (Louisiana) Genealogical Society. She is a graduate of the National Genealogical Society (NGS) course – American Genealogy, the National Institute on Genealogical Research (NIGR), 2009 and attendee of the Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research (IGHR).
LaDonna’s website – Leafseeker Consulting
Leafseeker blog – blog.leafseeker.com
Leafseeker Consulting on Facebook
One Action Genealogists Can Take Right Now
“Take advantage of local or state or even online business management courses.“
A Graveyard Preservation Primer by Lynette Strangstad
Adobe PDF – For sending clients files and reports in a printable format
“Overall, whatever level of genealogy you want to do and whatever aspect you want to focus on for your business, I say you go for it no matter who tells you you can’t and not matter who looks at you like you’re crazy because it all works out.”
LaDonna talked about several obstacles she has encountered during her career such as working in isolation and helping her local community become comfortable with her genealogy services. There are many obstacles that we face both when we are starting and growing our genealogy business. They vary from the voice in your head that says you can’t do this to the voice of friends and family that say you shouldn’t embark on a career in genealogy. Other times obstacles can include your desire to become certified before opening up shop or a mismatch in services to local needs. It’s time to tackle these obstacles head on!
ACTION: Make a list on paper of all the obstacles that are preventing you from starting your genealogy business or keeping you from moving forward. Next take each obstacle one by one and determine how you are going to work around it. Will it be by creating a plan to get certification? Or perhaps by finding a mentor who can guide you through the bumps? Or perhaps you will focus on how you can explain to your loved ones why this is important for you and then show them your business plan! By writing down your obstacles you can clearly identify them and then you can specifically determine how to remove them so they won’t hold you back.
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