Laura Prescott, R.I.P.

It is with great sadness that I report the news about a long-time friend and former co-worker: Laura Prescott. She was one of the smartest and most delightful people I ever knew. She was enthusiastic about everything she did and nearly everyone she ever met. She was an expert genealogist, an educator, a past president of the Association of Professional Genealogists (APG), and an all-around nice person. Laura was most recently the director of’s Ancestry Academy. She also was mentioned frequently in this newsletter over the years.

Laura’s humility, integrity, and hard work will continue to inspire those who knew her for many years to come.

The following was written by the Association of Professional Genealogists:

Wheat Ridge, Colo., 30 August 2018 – The Association of Professional Genealogists is saddened to learn of the death, on 26 August 2018, of Laura G. Prescott. APG extends condolences to Laura’s family and many friends on her passing, especially to her two adult children, Kate Duffy Tarvainen and Nate Duffy, of whom she was so proud, and her granddaughter, Margaret Tarvainen, who brought her such joy.

Laura’s service to the community of professional genealogists is long and distinguished,” said Billie Stone Fogarty, APG President. “We will all miss her warm smile and engaging demeanor.”

Laura, an alumna of Dartmouth College, served the genealogical community in a number of ways. She was on several conference program committees, worked as an independent genealogical professional, was on the staff of the New England Historic Genealogical Society and, most recently was director of Ancestry Academy for

Her service to APG was exemplary, as she served as APG’s vice president in 2008 and 2009 and as president in 2010 and 2011. In 2014, she was presented with APG’s Grahame T. Smallwood, Jr. Award of Merit for outstanding service to APG.

Laura’s always cheerful nature and genuine interest in others’ work as genealogical professionals inspired the Association to establish the Laura G. Prescott Award for Exemplary Service to Professional Genealogy in 2017, and she was its inaugural recipient. This award is presented in recognition of a career of exemplary professionalism and encouragement to others in the field.


I am in total shock to hear this news. I worked worked with Laura at NEHGS.


I did not know Laura but I do know that she certainly made significant contributions to the genealogical community and appreciated learning more about the extent of her contributions.


Kathy Bolduc Amoroso August 31, 2018 at 11:47 pm

WOW! So sad to learn about this. Laura helped me several times on genealogy issues and worked with Maine Historical Society on a great article about research in Maine. So sorry for her family and friends. A beautiful light has gone out. 😦


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