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  • DNA Testing For Genealogy: What Is It and How Can I use It?

DNA Testing For Genealogy: What Is It and How Can I use It?

  • May 11, 2023
  • 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM
  • Temple Emanuel Denver Colorado


Registration is closed

Please Join

Temple Emanuel and 

the Jewish Genealogy Society of Colorado

DNA Testing for Genealogy:  What Is It and How Can I Use It?

With genealogists and JGSCO members 

JGSCO Member Greg Liverman


 JGSCO Member Sue Black

Thursday May 11 2023

7:00 PM to 9:00 PM

In Person Only

Temple Emanuel

51 Grape St 

Denver CO 80220

Greg Liverman’s program and bio:

DNA testing has become very popular to determine your ethnicity, facts about health risks and to find cousins. It has been used by adoptees and foundlings to find their biological parents and to solve cold cases. This lecture will provide information about what type of DNA test to take and what to do with the results once you get them 

Presentation Outline 

  •  Types of DNA tests and what each can be used for 
  •  Review of testing companies – what does each offer 
  •  Survey of DNA test results, drawing samples from the major testing companies 
  •  Ethnicity Reports – how accurate are these?
     Finding cousins and more distant relatives – what can I do with this information?
     Specific issues and techniques for Jewish testers
     Case studies with examples from real tests


Greg Liverman, Ph.D., began tracing his family history in the 1990's with an old Macintosh computer and a copy of Family Tree Maker. At that time, family and career pursuits did not leave much time for genealogy work. He was finally able to return to charting his family history in 2009. Greg quickly realized that he could bring to bear all the analytical and problem solving skills he had developed in over forty years of working as a journalist, scientist and business manager. 

Living on a ranch on the western slopes of Pikes Peak means there are few libraries nearby, so Greg has become adept at using online resources for both domestic and foreign research. He has researched his family history "on the ground" in libraries, cemeteries and records offices in seven states, with more on the list to visit. He has experience in using various techniques, based on the careful application of reason and logic, to successfully break down “brick walls”. 

Greg and his wife Wendy added genetic genealogy or DNA testing to their brick wall demolition toolkit in 2013 and have immersed themselves in the details of DNA tests and evaluation methods. They have answered several questions about their family history using DNA evidence. 

Greg recently launched Pinewood Genealogy to help people with their genealogy research and genetic genealogy analysis. 



Sue Black’s program and bio:  

Now that you've located new relatives from DNA testing and filled in your family tree on, what's next?  How about all those boxes of old family photos in your basement?  Sue Black, who is not a professional genealogist, has been the one person in her family to save all the old family photos and memorabilia.   During the pandemic, she decided it was time to finally do something with it all.  She spent the last few years sorting through the boxes, calling relatives she had never met to ask them for their photos, and then assembling it all into an easily digestible, user-friendly format.  She will share ideas and examples of her work for others who may be thinking of wading into this time-consuming but very rewarding project with their own family history.


Sue Black has worked a variety of jobs in the Jewish community including Admissions Director of Solomon Schechter Day School of Albuquerque, Hebrew and Sunday School teacher at her former congregation, and Volunteer Coordinator at Kavod Senior Life here in Denver.  She also ran the Sisterhood giftshop in her former congregation for 10 years and was on the board of Temple Emanuel's Sisterhood for several years.  She has had a life long interest in genealogy and family history.  Sue has two grown children - Elana who is married and lives in New York, and Ethan who lives in Denver.  Last but not least, Sue is married to Rabbi Joe Black!

We recommend the following DNA testing companies.

If you have not been tested we suggest you do so in time for the event.  

Why MyHeritage

MyHeritage has the largest data base of Eastern European Jews.  They are an Israeli company. They have a great breakdown of ethnicity estimate.  i.e. they detected Iberian Peninsula in my DNA which did not show up in other tests.


MyHeritage has given us free shipping.

Why Family Tree DNA

FTDNA is a Jewish company and the only company that tests for your paternal-line relatives in their Y-DNA database.  Please note only men can use this test Y-DNA.  But you can purchase their regular DNA test that can test both men and women.

Why Ancestry has the largest data base therefore more possibilities of connecting with family members.  

Everyone must register at

Temple Emanuel Members will be provided with a special code 

JGSCO Members are free 


The Jewish Genealogical Society (JGS) of Colorado is a leader in education, research, information exchange forums, and resources for Jewish genealogy.

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Jewish Genealogical Society of Colorado
P.O. Box 460442
Denver, Colorado 80246


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