Society Management – Volunteer Motivations: Getting and Keeping Your Volunteers – Judy Nimer Muhn

Judy Nimer Muhn

Session Number: NGS2105-ME-01

Track: Managing Events

SPONSORS: VIVID-PIX, Ancestry, and Family Tree Maker

Volunteers come with five motivations for their service. When you know what their motivations are, recruiting and retaining them is easier and more effective.

Working with volunteers – recruiting them, soliciting their involvement and sharing their skills, keeping them engaged and happy, and acknowledging them to thank them for their time is SO important.  Judy comes from a long background of volunteer service and also from staff roles in volunteer management in nationwide organizations such as Girl Scouting, the American Red Cross and United Way.  As a volunteer herself, she has gained experience in what works for her and those that she’s volunteered with and now, as a leader in a number of genealogical societies, she recognizes the ways that societies can get overwhelmed and inadvertently neglectful in relationship to those who have offered their time and talents.  And, on the staff or management side of things, Judy has also seen the distinct personalities and types of people who want to volunteer as well as the way they speak about their motivations for volunteering.

In an earlier career in counseling psychology, Judy gained insight into the cognitive elements of volunteering that can be supported by societies as they work to engage those in the community who may resonate with what is needed – how to appeal to them, how to reach out, how to thank them appropriately and keeping them involved even as they and the society change over time.

BIO: Judy is a professional researcher, educator and writer/blogger residing in Milford, Michigan (in SE Michigan).  She holds officer roles in a number of genealogical societies, and leads a DNA SIG online.  When she’s not doing genealogy, she’s an Organizational Development Specialist in the nonprofit community of SE Michigan and travels and explores extensively around the world, feeding her love of cultures, beautiful landscapes and connecting with people.


The Virtual NGS 2021 Focus on Societies all-day program launches 21 May

The National Genealogical Society (NGS) recognizes that genealogical societies, historical societies, and family organizations are the backbone of the genealogy community and are an important source of information and knowledge for budding family historians. The #NewNGS is the place to share the successes of genealogy societies and launch a new era of collaboration to make our community even stronger and support all families in search of their personal stories.

The NGS Family History Conference is the perfect opportunity to collaborate and learn more about how to build a stronger society or organization. Focus on Societies, Friday, 21 May, is a full day of lectures centered on sharing best practices, building leadership, attracting new members, planning online meetings and events, developing newsletters and other publications, and more.

See the Program Brochure for more details on the all-day program. Gather together to share, learn, and build skills that will enrich your organization and engage your members.

To learn more about the NGS 2021 Virtual Family History Conference’s week-long events, 17-21 May, visit the conference and download a copy of the program brochure.