Research & GIS
Doug is originally from Washington State, and his father grew up within the Blaine-Point Roberts community of Icelanders on the west coast. His father’s great-grandparents emigrated from Iceland in the 1880’s and lived in Winnipeg, Manitoba and Pembina, North Dakota before settling in Washington.
Doug became interested in genealogy in 2015 when he began building his family tree and connecting family records with online resources. While conducting research in 2016 he found the Icelandic Roots website and became a member.
In early 2017, while preparing to visit Iceland with his parents, he consulted with Sunna Furstenau, who suggested that he visit his ancestral farms. As a result, he learned the unique geographic naming conventions for Icelandic places and how to find farms and parishes. In May, he and his parents visited more than 20 ancestral sites in both eastern and western Iceland.
Sparked by his experience in Iceland, Doug now volunteers for Icelandic Roots, using his geographic information systems (GIS) and data management skills to improve the geographic information in the IR database and to geocode as many geographic places as possible. He also assists with adding new media for Icelandic places.
Doug is a retired U.S. Navy submarine officer and resides in Richmond, Virginia with his wife Elizabeth and two daughters.