The Board for Certification of Genealogists was founded in 1964 by Fellows of the American Society of Genealogists, the genealogical field's academic honorary society. The Board licenses associates under two categories: Certified Genealogist℠ and Certified Genealogical Lecturer℠. Associates' licenses are granted for a five-year period, at which time they may be renewed upon application to the Board, and that application's evaluation in a peer-review process.

Associates holding certification work in a variety of fields. They have been recognized as experts in matters of inheritance and probate; some work to assist in reuniting families separated through adoption. Others prepare applications for lineage societies; still others work to prove Native American genealogies.

Board-certified associates provide significant leadership in the effort to raise standards for research, writing and reporting in the genealogical field. Elizabeth Shown Mills, author of Evidence! has been a Certified Genealogist℠ for more than 30 years. Other leading authors and lecturers who have earned credentials under the Board's authority include the late Walter Lee Sheppard, FASG, CG; John Frederick Dorman, FASG, CG, longtime editor and publisher of The Virginia Genealogist; and Thomas Jones, Ph.D., CG, editor of the National Genealogical Society Quarterly.

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