In the mid-1980s, with the growing international interest in family history and the emergence of new genealogical services of varying standards within Ireland, it was felt that a professional body was needed. The initiative was taken in Belfast, where the embryonic AGI had its first meeting in 1986. Its members suggested to their Dublin-based colleagues that a similar group should be formed there. After a number of meetings, a panel of independent assessors was appointed and each potential member submitted a sample of work for assessment. This began in 1986. Initially the Belfast and Dublin groups operated as two branches what was then the Association of Professional Genealogists In Ireland (APGI), each with its own committee. From the first Annual General Meeting in December 1988, at the Belfast members’ suggestion, APGI functioned as a unit under a single council. At an extraordinary general meeting in Dublin on 27 May 2015 the members of APGI voted to change the name of the association to Accredited Genealogists Ireland (AGI).