Project: Global Family Reunion

Categories: Projects

The mission of Global Family Reunion project on WikiTree is to help make as many family connections as possible for the Global Family Reunion being planned for June 6, 2015, and, as a bonus in doing so, further the core WikiTree goal of one world tree, where everyone is connected.

The reunion is being organized by author AJ Jacobs. His New York Times op-ed "Are You My Cousin?" launched the idea for this project and discusses his plans.

AJ is including everyone, EVERYONE, who connects to him and his wife. He talks about the event and his approach on his Global Family Reunion website. Connections at WikiTree are generally only traced through common ancestors, but AJ is approaching this by considering connections made any way possible, so if you can be linked by a marriage, adoption, etc., tracing back and forth and all around, you are related.

All this means once we start tracing a line, we JUST KEEP TRACING! All the spouses, their families, their families' families. Everyone, just like you would if you were working on six degrees of separation.

This project is very important. Good research is very important. Give what time you can, even if it is only an hour or two a week. That little bit can accomplish a lot. Even after the official Reunion is over, we hope to maintain this project and continue to make sure each new member of WikiTree gets connected to our main family tree.

THANK YOU for volunteering. This project would be impossible without the incredible volunteers here at WikiTree!

If you like a little competition, we have an on-going game to race to make connections for some of our Notable Folks to AJ in our Connection Combat!



How to Join

To join the project, send a message to Abby Glann, the Project Co-Leader, so she can add the badge to your profile. You do not need to be a part of the Project here on WikiTree to go to AJ's Reunion on June 6, 2015, but we sure appreciate your help!

Then, you can jump right in, tracing your own family to connect with AJ and the existing WikiTree Global Family Tree, or you can work on any of the profiles listed on the category page! Most of the profiles on that page are open, so you can add to the profiles without being added as a trusted member (unless you would like to be).

Once you are a member, be sure to add the Global Reunion tag to your G2G feed for updates on what we need help with and updates about our progress .

If you have questions, just send Abby or Erin a message, and THANK YOU for your interest and help. Every little bit gets us one step closer to making one, giant world tree a reality!

Cousin Connector Table

We have over a thousand people who want to be AJ's cousin, but have yet to figure out how. We are trying to slowly get them connected but we really need your help. If you click on the up/down arrows on the table headers, you can sort the table to see if there are areas that appeal to you, like certain geographic regions, surnames, or eras. Just put your name in the box to say you're working on it, and be sure to keep us updated on the corresponding G2G thread so we can all work together to get everyone connected. When you find a connection, let us know asap! These people are working on finding their connection and will be thrilled to hear our fantastic WikiTree GFR members helped them make it happen. If you have questions, just ask!!

A special request, another way to help is to help us with some of the full family trees and gedcoms people have sent.

If you like just doing data input, we'd love the help! You can private message Abby if you are interested.
Researching For volunteer researcher surnames surnames surnames surnames steps to AJ regions notes G2G Post to Keep Track of Progress
Andrea Crosta di MoncalvoVolunteer NeededCrostaOrsiniMontiBollininot yetItalyAndrea has a really nice tree-we just need some help from someone who has a little experience with Italian research to start building it out so we can find a connectionnot yet
Eric JacksKaren Tobo JacksBertrandBurnsEvans47US:California Jacks/Yaksh family wants to connect
Rosemary PerezVolunteer NeededPerezRodriguezRiveraBahamondenot yet Famous relative-Francisco Franco, has quite a few relatives listed on the Wikipedia pagenot yet
Kathy ThompsonVolunteer Needed not yetAustralia, UKKathy is connected to Rudyard Kipling, but needs some confirmation of a few connections, if someone wants to help her find some sourcesnot yet
B. RoederSallyRoederOenbringJonesCathcartnot yetUS: Georgia, Iowafound this family siteHelp Connecting the Roeder Family
D. TitheringtonLucy's looking at itConnollyHamillTitheringtonGoodrichnot yetUKnoneTitherington Family Needs A Hand
J. ColemanColemanSwinson not yetUS:GeorgianoneThe Georgia Colemans Need Connected
M.KoerthVolunteer NeededKoerthPikeNollDuncannot yetUS: Kansasnonenot yet
David BlaineVolunteer NeededPerez White not yetUS:Brooklyn, New Yorknonenot yet
S. FishbachVolunteer NeededOlsonBrinkNathan FishbachSteinbergnot yet nonenot yet
H. MorgenbesserVolunteer NeededMorgenbesserMarderNachtSchwartznot yetUS:Brooklyn, New York; Poland, Austria/Germany; Romanianonenot yet
J. FriedmanVolunteer NeededTokerLevineFriedmanRubinnot yet nonenot yet
GolombVolunteer NeededGolombTemelesOlitskyWeisenbergnot yet nonenot yet
A. KlineVolunteer Neededde Florance; Sherell de FloranceIsrael not yetLithuania; Manchuria; Sydney, NSW, Australianonenot yet
A. MustafaVolunteer NeededMustafa not yet nonenot yet
Clif HoogterpVolunteer NeededMacNicolPetersonHoogterpHuddlestonnot yetScotlandnonenot yet
Elizabeth HorowitzVolunteer NeededJanovskySalomonRussellLobbenbergnot yetRussia; Germany: Koln; US: New Yorknonenot yet
Jean ThompsonVolunteer NeededHummelStinnettTylerO'Briennot yet nonenot yet
Jesse RifkinVolunteer Needed (and Jesse is a GFR member)RifkinSrob (Zrobkowsky)StarkAbzugnot yet nonenot yet
Joanne PetersonVolunteer NeededBurdettCookHaywardBrousseaunot yet nonenot yet
Kimberly Van RynVolunteer NeededVermasVan_RijnGrotersHarveynot yet nonenot yet
Elizabeth SametVolunteer NeededSchiffmanKarpalowSametMarmorsteinnot yetHungary; US: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; TorontoHebrewnot yet
Maurice StrasfeldVolunteer NeededOlynshinskiWeberGlanzmanStrassfeldnot yet not yet
Celine PapillonVolunteer NeededLavoieRoyForguesPapillonnot yet not yet
Robyn BrewerVolunteer NeededGreeneWinterburnSchlueterZimmermannot yet not yet
Mindy KornhaberVolunteer NeededKornhaberRothmanBerkowitzSchorrnot yetRomania; Ukraine; US:New York not yet
Paige ThombsVolunteer NeededCastellanoAcadiaThombsFrancisnot yetOntario: Hamilton; Italy: Sicily, Fogia not yet
Manoli WetherellVolunteer NeededSegond von BanchetBlotvan MeerkerkBekkernot yetIndonesia; Perth, Australia; Borneo; NetherlandsHas fantastic family tree-just needs entered and research done to branch out. No names on WikiTree beyond those Abby has addednot yet
Regis GiampersaVolunteer NeededGiampersaCapozzoGimenezGarcia Gonzaleznot yetItaly, Spain, BrazilRegis is an active member and has a great tree up already. We just need someone to start researching sibling groups. Ask him for trusted list access; a lot of the tree is public/privatenot yet
Victoria OltarshVolunteer NeededReisOltarshLeibowitzBerenholtznot yet not yet
Shannon BarrVolunteer NeededBarrEgert not yet not yet
Caroline MTVolunteer NeededModarresiRuethEllis not yetLondon, England; Iran not yet
Anthony RandazzoVolunteer NeededRandazzoRuswickWannmacher not yet family on Geninot yet
Laurel ErwinKaren ToboErwinGuerinKeithanCoyle39Kentucky, Michigan Connection request pending: Laurel's ancestor Mary Louise Cochran's brother William Atkins Cochran is 34 steps away not yet
Rachel SalvoVolunteer NeededSalvoFrietagMossWatersnot yetKentucky; Chicago, Illinois not yet
Crystal LewandowskiVolunteer NeededLonnquistSmithSchuetteKutzbachnot yet not yet
Ryan LewandowskiVolunteer NeededLewandowskiWojcikHofferthPetersnot yet not yet
Lisa WallisVolunteer NeededWallisShuckLuchsJohansdotternot yetUS:Indiana, Illinois, Pennsylvania; Finland not yet
Clara MastersKaren ToboHolocherLangemeyerOberholtzerMasters35US:Ohio, Indiana just waiting on a trusted list request not yet
Dan NicholsVolunteer NeededNicholsSimmonsCatronBriscoe29 steps via Kettenring line once a merge happens US: Kansas, Oklahoma not yet

These are close relatives of AJ's that, if we can add more to their history, we should be able to make more connections happen faster:

Guide for Research

There are few things we suggest you do to participate in the project on WikiTree (if you want to go to the reunion itself, you can, whether you link to AJ or not. See more information on the Global Family Reunion web page):

  • If you do not already have a project badge, which shows everyone you are part of the GFR Project on WikiTree, contact Abby and let her know you'd like to be a part of the project.
  • Once you are a member, add the global_reunion tag to your following feed so you'll see G2G discussions, updates, and opportunities to help out as other members pass lines they cannot pursue on to others.
  • Visit our Google+ Community for weekly updates on progress, general news, and chatting with other members.
  • Help out some of our cousins to be, who have contacted AJ and want connected to the tree by researching lines on our Cousin Connector Table above.
  • Check the Priority Connection Page and the GFR Category page to see the profiles where research has halted and you can help by picking one of those to start researching and connecting new lines. Many of those lines are famous folks and part of the Notables sub-project which can be kind of fun to research. Just ask to be added to the trusted list if the profile isn't open.
  • Keep all profiles as either Open - so anyone can jump in and help - or if the person is still alive (or might be) Private with Public Biography and Tree, so it can be easily referenced for others working on the same tree.
  • Active users can add this template, {{User Global Family Reunion|steps=10}}, to their profiles to show they are connected to AJ. If you know how many degrees you are from him, you can enter the number after the bar in the template. If not, you can just use the word "many". If you aren't connected yet, let Abby know so we can get you on our Cousin Connector list. We want everyone connected!
  • For profiles that are for inactive or deceased, you can use this template, {{Global Family Reunion|steps=10}} to show that the profile is part of the GFR and has been connected to AJ. It isn't a necessity, but helps others see who is and is not connected. Some folks post it on their bulletin board instead of their profile to keep it from being cluttered, too.
  • If you have a question or need help, please post a new question in G2G or in the Google+ community. Be sure to tag it with [global_reunion] so the project members see it and we can step in to help. Use whatever surname is appropriate, as well, as many community members at large can help, too.
  • If you come across fantastic profiles we can feature (and make sure you have the template with the steps to AJ on them!) in the Profile of the Week or submit to the This Day in History/WikiPick of the Day feature on the blog, put them under the appropriate heading on this page.
  • When you come across profiles that are part of what links one person to AJ on WikiTree, you can post this blanket statement on the profile bulletin board to invite them to check out our project, as well as AJ's reunion:
This profile happens to be connected to the WikiTree Global Family Tree, which also connects to AJ Jacobs. For more information on the Global Family Reunion, an event AJ is hosting June 6, 2015 for the entire world to show how we're all connected, see the Global Family Reunion project page. Be sure to invite your family and friends, too!
The Global Family Reunion Project


  • Our number one goal is to have everyone on WikiTree connected to the Global Family Reunion. That is A LOT of profiles. Luckily, all you need is one connection to connect a whole family line. We are currently at 65%. Chris created a list of unconnected profiles for us to use to connect the rest. It is here: Unconnected Profiles
  • Have all connected profiles well-sourced as possible and conforming to the WikiTree Style Standards
  • Include correct parents, spouse, and children, or mark the profile as having no children or spouse so that work can continue elsewhere.
  • Have appropriate categories listed in all Biography areas.

Members' Current Activity global_reunion.gif

  • This is a space to keep track of misc Fink Family related links, photos, leads, and such, until they can be linked to the family.

  • Abby Glann: Working on the Unconnected list, putting the GFR template on as many connected profiles as I can, and going through the category to remove/add the category as needed and keep things rolling in general.
  • Erin Breen: I'm ready to make connections for notable people, and every day folks! If you are still unconnected and would like some help finding your connection, send me a message.
  • Ron Norman: Open to requests for help in filling in twigs on branches. I have started by working on the Flug family and their siblings. Also the Sunstein siblings. The Bachmans, the Billigs, the Finks, and the Klees to name a few of the branches/twigs.
  • Lianne Lavoie: Generally working on Canadian families to make it easier for Canadians to connect to AJ. Also working on some notables, especially ones with French-Canadian ancestry.
  • Bob Fields: Leading the Notables subproject: Finding people who *should* be on WikiTree, adding those missing profiles, categorizing them properly, and connecting them to the rest of WT so people can see what other *famous* people they are connected to. Any/all assistance is most welcome.
  • Kyle: Well-versed in early American research, so can take on lines in that era/area when they are reached.
  • Lucy: Trying to connect the Titherington family to the global tree.
  • Heather: would like to help with the French Canadian connections, Seguin dit Laderoute and descendants. I also have a particular interest in Denmark and Danish research. Found my connection (another French Canadian / Deerfield massacre survivor Jean Chartier) so working on that in both directions: back to Simeon Harmon. Also connected via Queen Elizabeth II, working on connecting to our Creswicks Creswicke-4
  • Robin Kabrich constantly works on her multitudinous Pike ancestors and has adopted some that are on your list who turned out to be cousins. I'd be happy to look for the others! Also working on Civil War project, some of whom are notables.
  • Veronica Williams wanting to help with Australian and/or English research. Please let me know if you come up with profiles needing work in this area.
  • Eric Daly is working on Dickinson family lines (including Emily Elizabeth Dickinson)
  • Matt Pryber - working on the Kerstetter, Bierly, Barner, Glantz, Price and Coe Families George Abel from the list.
  • Chris Hoyt Bemis, Samuel W. and his ancestors. John Andrews [Andrews-420] and [Andrews-421]
  • Anne B is working on Rebecca (Turner) Mix and her family. I've gone back to the beginning. This is the first family I ever researched, 45 years ago. It's like visiting old friends. 8/2 Still working on the Mixes when not being sidetracked.
  • Pat Hickin isn't doing any significant new research but is trying to clean up her messy source citations on her family database file on her computer.
  • Doug Lockwood - Just connected Kathy Lee Gifford to AJ (38 steps). Currently trying to connect Eric Clapton & George Harrison. Added sources confirming connection to Teddy & Franklin Roosevelt.
  • Alison Andrus: I am working on Tim Robbins line which will connect Susan Sarandon and Chris Sarandon to the Global Family.

For what members are working on right now, click here for the badge activity feed.

See badge page for the full list of members.


  • Rescued Memories has lost family photos and includes everything written about the photo with it. It may provide links in your search for connections.
  • WikiTree Tops has top facts about the Global Family Reunion found in WikiTree.
  • [1] Jacobs One Name Study

This page was last modified 19:21, 19 October 2014. This page has been accessed 12,504 times.