Family History ACT

The Heraldry & Genealogy Society of Canberra Inc.


The office holders for 2019-2020

You can find out more about people who have been part of the management group of our society in any of the years since 1975-76 here


President – Nick Reddan

Nick has been a member of HAGSOC since 1988 when he started researching his family history. He has been a member of HAGSOC council since 2009.
His main interest is in Irish genealogy but he has also researched his English and Scottish ancestors.
Nick initiated and manages a significant genealogical database – The Registry of Deeds Index Project Ireland.
His research efforts have been recognised by the Irish Genealogical Research Society who made him a fellow in 2007.

Vice President – Rosemary McKenzie


Rosemary has been researching her family history since she was a teenager. Her parents are from Victoria and Queensland, so no local or even NSW research. Her ancestry then goes overseas to Germany and the UK – England, Scotland, Ireland – no Wales yet! Her primary interests are convicts, immigration, writing, travel and recently DNA. Rosemary has been a member of HAGSOC since 2003 and has been on council for most of those years starting with membership secretary then vice-president, treasurer and president. Currently Rosemary is editor of The Ancestral Searcher (TAS), Vice President again and Volunteers Coordinator.

Secretary – Cheryl Bollard


Cheryl has been a member of HAGSOC since 2018 and has recently joined the Council as Secretary. She has a keen interest in most areas of family history and regularly attends a number of SIGS and SUGS, including the Irish, Scottish, Convict, Family Tree Maker and DNA groups. She is looking forward to working on Council.


Treasurer – Neville Morrison

My interest in family history started trying to determine where my Morrison ancestors had come from which so far has turned into a brick wall. I am fortunate that the other 15 great great grandparents all migrated to South Australia between 1839 and 1865 and were mostly easy to find. I joined HAGSOC in 2018.



Gina Tooke

Gina has been a HAGSOC member for seven years and has held several roles during this time. She was Secretary in 2018 and 2019, a member of the Society’s Education and Events Committee during 2014 and co-ordinated volunteers for the NSW & ACT Family History Conference held in Canberra in 2013. A highlight for Gina was working with Rhonda Kerr to produce the Society’s 50th anniversary commemorative publication We are Family.

Gina has a keen interest in writing family history stories and is a member of the HAGSOC Writing Committee that manages the Society’s annual writing competition, the E.M. Fletcher Award.

Anne Beasley

Anne has a brick wall that she is keen to break down or at least make some cracks in which she has been working on and off on for many years. Has been a member since 2015. Keen to learn more about DNA and how it can help researchers of family history. Loves swing and balboa dancing from the 20’s – 30’s era. Keen to learn more about HAGSOC and how it helps its members and looking forward to being able to spend more time researching and attending meetings of interest at HAGSOC in 2017.

Michele Rainger

Michele Rainger

Michele’s interest in family history was piqued when she attended her first family reunion while still at school. Since then life and family have often gotten in the way so she has only been researching sporadically until recently. Now retired Michele has time to pursue her interest in researching and writing her family history. She joined HAGSOC in 2017 and figures that the best way to learn about family history is to get involved and learn by having a go. Michele is currently the convenor of the Convict Special Interest Group.

Francine Morrison

Francine Morrison

I first got interested in family history while searching for my grandparents on my father’s side. My family never spoke of them and my father did not have any photos of them. I am a first generation Australian as my father came from England in 1940 and my mother was of Scottish parents. I started searching on Ancestry and found that I have cousins in England and Wales. I joined HAGSOC in 2018.

Sue P

Susan Pillans

Sue, recently retired, has been a quiet member since the early 90’s and is looking forward to finally making a contribution to the running of HAGSOC. Interests include Irish and early Australian History, WW1 and the Family Historian program . Playing bridge and gardening take up the rest of her vanishing spare time.


Howard Viccars