SGSI History

 The Slovenian Genealogy Society International, Inc., founded in 1986 by Al Peterlin,  of Camp Hill, Pennsylvania. The society was established to preserve and make available records documenting the lives of individuals with Slovenian ancestry. Mr. Peterlin was the President of SGSI for 20 years and currently serves as Chairman Emeritus. During his leadership, he developed important preservation projects to fund the digitization of rapidly deteriorating pre-1900 birth, marriage, and death records housed in the Archbishopric Archives in Ljubljana. He also had important Slovenian books translated into English and published to benefit genealogy research. These include History of Kostel by Dr. Stanisla Juznic and the translation of August Dimitz' book, History of Carniola from Primeval Times to 1813.

Rose Maria Macek Jisa of North Royalton, OH followed Al Peterlin as President.  Rose Marie began her leadership role in 2007, serving a growing organization with an international membership. She has been instrumental in developing SGSI's Oral History Preservation Project and opening the Slovene Genealogy Research Center, which is located within the Slovenian National Home's complex in Cleveland, Ohio. The center also has a gift shop. She is dedicated to bringing new genealogy resources to SGSI and performs research to answer inquiries from our members. Her ultimate goal is making the SGSI Research Center the repository of all Slovenian immigrant family history.
The research center is named for Rose Marie to honor her years of service to SGSI. 

The current President is Jeff Dormish of Pittsburgh, PA

Membership Benefits

There are exciting changes happening in Slovenia and here in the United States that facilitate the study of Slovenian genealogy. Genealogical research in Slovenia was once extremely difficult but since Slovenia’s independence in 1991, doors are being opened and records are becoming available at an ever-increasing rate.

As a new member you will have access to SGSI’s community driven website, brimming with interactive tools and research resources. The following are just a few of the many membership benefits:
Social Media Collaboration- Searching for a village? Need help on the different spellings of a surname? Examine our Facebook page ( The site is very active with daily updates. It is a closed group with members from all over the world.
The Linden Tree, is the SGSI newsletter. It is published four times a year and contains articles on tools and approaches for doing genealogy research, stories by fellow genealogists regarding their own research and travels to Slovenia, member queries and updates on the Society’s growth and direction. Issues dating back to 1987 are available for viewing. 
Digitized Indices - The Digitized Indices is a section which provides links to all of the SGSI, Inc. transcribed indexed projects. Current indices available include, “Americans in America” by Trunk, “Master code list; Slovenian Church Histories in America”, Jubilee books, and drustva history books, to name only a few.
Surname Index - The Surname Index is a list of Slovenian surnames and geographic regions where these names are prevalent. Our members contribute to this index. Several members have found new relatives or links to their Slovenian ancestors by using this important research resource.
SGSI Research Center - Our research center is a private research archive and is open by appointment to members of the Society only. It is located at the Slovenian Museum and Archives, 6415 St. Clair Avenue in Cleveland, Ohio. The Center’s resources include; Slovenian books, pamphlets, Koledars, church histories, family genealogy records, photos, microfilms and oral history records.
Slovene Book Translations - Issues of Novi Svet, Narodni Adresar, and other books have been translated and indexed for researchers and made available on the SGSI website.
Slovenian Letter Writing Guide - General research assistance is provided through the guide on how to draft a letter in the Slovenian language for requesting birth, marriage, or death records at the Archbishopric Archives in Slovenia. Slovenian word lists and additional phrases are also provided.
Volunteer Opportunities - Members have a rare opportunity to meet and work with other genealogists with a special interest in Slovenia genealogy. You can share your skills in assisting the Society in its many projects to preserve our Slovenian heritage.

Meet the Board

Chairman Emeritus              Board of Directors                 Executive Committee

Al Peterlin                                 Jeff Dormish                             President and CEO:  Jeff Dormish

                                                   Rose Marie Macek Jisa           Secretary:  Christine Panchur

                                                   Lorraine Kaup                          Treasurer:  Lorraine Kaup

                                                   Samantha Servais                    Membership Chair:  Janice Hovecar

                                                   Christine Panchur                    Research Specialist:  Rose Marie Macek Jisa

   Denise Modic Urban            Webmaster: Denise Modic Urban

Facebook Administrator: Samantha Servais

Linden Tree Editors:

Christine Panchur & Jeffrey Dormish


© 2018 Slovenian Genealogy. All Rights Reserved. 
Slovenian Genealogy Society International, Inc. is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. 6415 St. Clair Avenue Cleveland, OH 44103

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software