APGI Becomes AGI

After almost 30 years as the accrediting body for genealogists in Ireland, APGI has adopted a new name. At an Extraordinary General Meeting held in Dublin on Wednesday, 27 May 2015, the Association of Professional Genealogists in Ireland (APGI) voted to change its name to Accredited Genealogists Ireland (AGI).

As Accredited Genealogists Ireland the Association will continue to set and promote high standards for those engaged professionally in genealogy while safeguarding the interests of clients.  Founded in Belfast in 1986, the Association has always been an accrediting body for genealogists throughout the island of Ireland. Accreditation from the Association is controlled by an independent Board of Assessors. Each applicant is required to demonstrate to a high standard their ability, knowledge and practical experience in Irish genealogy. In addition, each member is bound by the Association’s Code of Practice.

APGI has always kept abreast of changes in the world of genealogy. In 2012 it introduced a new category of APGI Affiliate.  This is to assist reputable genealogists, in the early stages of their transition to professional research, to prepare for application for accreditation. Through mentoring and attending APGI Continuing Professional Development events a number of Affiliates have progressed to membership.

Over the years, members of the Association have written for Irish and international print media and appeared on, and undertaken the research for, radio and TV shows. In particular, they have provided much of the raw material documenting the ancestry of celebrities who have appeared on the Irish, British and US versions of Who Do You Think You Are?, appearing alongside such people as Jeremy Irons, Graham Norton and Julie Walters. On RTE’s Genealogy Roadshow, they helped members of the public to verify family stories: checking out claims of an ancestor in the Rising; a family relationship to Charlie Chaplin; and talk of a relative with a ticket for the maiden voyage of the ill-fated Titanic. Other shows include the RTE IFTA nominated series Dead Money, about lost fortunes being restored to families, and The Shelbourne, a five-episode series following the daily life of Ireland’s grandest hotel which featured Helen Kelly in her role as the hotel’s Genealogy Butler.

After the decision to change APGI’s name to AGI, its President, Steven Smyrl, said “Beyond its functions of accrediting and regulating, APGI has made many positive contributions over the past 30 years to the development of genealogy in Ireland, particularly through championing the needs of all types of record users, lobbying state-run archives and offices, and by supporting the efforts of the Council of Irish Genealogical Organisations (CIGO). Under its new name of Accredited Genealogists Ireland the Association will continue its vital role in all areas of genealogy across the island and internationally.”

The Association’s website will be renamed soon, but in the meantime information about AGI can be found at: www.accreditedgenealogists.ie