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Les Shockey, SEMA SC Rep Candidate

My name is Lesley Shockey, known as Les by my friends, and I have agreed once again to accept the nomination to be a candidate for the Advisory Board as the SEMA State Coordinator Representative. I have been serving in this position since being selected to fill a vacancy in October 2009.

I am 72 years old, widowed, have four children, thirteen grandchildren and five great grandchildren. I am retired as a result of multiple problems created during an abdominal aorta aneurysm repair in January 2005.

I have been active in the USGenWeb Project since the summer of 1996 when I volunteered to try to learn HTML and create a genealogy web page for Jackson County, West Virginia. I found the USGenWeb Project to be a very rewarding experience with the many kind words and thank you messages for helping someone break down the brick wall of their research. One year later the first State Coordinator announced that she needed to give up her position and asked for volunteers among the WVGenWeb Project volunteers. After almost two months of asking for someone to volunteer and no one being willing to do so, I agreed to give this additional role a try. I have asked the WVGenWeb CCs several times over the years to hold an election and allow someone else a chance to lead our state project, but each time there is an outpouring of messages stating they want me to remain as the SC.

As the acting SEMA State Coordinator Representative I have made sure that I thoroughly read all USGenWeb Project communications. I try to promptly answer any messages that request or require a response from me. When there are differing viewpoints regarding a matter before the Advisory Board, I listen to and try to fully understand the various sides of an issue when trying to reach a proper decision.

Some items that do bother me:

  • People using USGenWeb Project lists to recruit volunteers for other projects by badmouthing The USGenWeb Project.
  • Those who search for remote meanings of words in the by-laws in an effort to twist the meanings of the by-law instead of accepting the most common definition of a word. Instead of accepting what it says, they want to try to find hidden meanings.
  • Those who make claims that certain persons in the Project are evil or corrupt but who never provide valid proof of their statement. Allegations are not proof.

My other hobbies and interests include my family genealogy, Amateur Radio, scenic rides on my Polaris ATV in the woods, hills and mountains of West Virginia and caring for my twelve acres of Almost Heaven West Virginia.

  • In 2010 I was nominated and then invited to the Capital In Charleston to receive the honor of "West Virginia History Hero" award based on my work with the WVGenWeb Project.
  • I have served on the Board of Directors for the Shockey Family Fellowship, Inc. since 1994 and elected as President at the annual reunion in July 2015.
  • I am the project coordinator for the Shockey Family DNA Project at FamilyTree DNA.
  • I was elected and served three terms of three years each as the Great Lakes District Representative of M.A.R.A.C. Inc., an International Organization of Amateur Radio Operators.
  • I served as either President or Vice President of the Jackson County Amateur Radio Club for a total of twenty two years.
  • I worked as Assistant Editor of the Jackson County Historical Society Newsletter for a few years and have been the Assistant Editor of the Shockey Family Newsletter for the past thirteen years.
  • In October 2012 I was one of the nominees to serve a four year term as President of the Local #5668 S.O.A.R. group of retirees from the old Kaiser Aluminum Plant at Ravenswood. I have served as the President since January 2013.
  • Anyone with questions can reach me at either:

    WVGenWeb@wvgenweb.org      or       WVGenWeb@frontier.com