Judy G. Russell, JD, CG, CGL finished third in the rockstar genealogist poll as voted by US residents last September. Her blog at The Legal Genealogist is a must visit for US genealogists, and of interest to many others because of her interest in genetic genealogy. She is now a regular on the US speaker circuit, with a style that would do a lawyer wanting to convince a jury proud.
Her talk from last October “We’ve Come A Long Way, Baby” is worth a listen,Toward the end she mentions three challenges facing the profession: charges of elitism; DNA evidence and; societal change.
She makes no apologies for elitism if, as she sees it, it merely reflects adhering to standards appropriate to a professional.
On DNA evidence she acknowledges it's something many professionals approach with trepidation. (Note: according to the BCG member database only seven of 248 current CGs listing specialities acknowledge having skills in DNA testing.) In 2014 it strikes me as distinctly odd that professionals would be recognized as such without that skill.
Societal change refers to the increasing incidence of nontraditional families, defined not by bloodlines and the dictionary definition of genealogy, but the dictionary definition of family. That's in line with BCG's definition of genealogy which seems to be pretty much the definition of family history.
Genealogy is the study of families in genetic and historical context. It is the study of communities, in which kinship networks weave the fabric of economic, political and social life. It is the study of family structures and the changing roles of men, women, and children in diverse cultures. It is biography, reconstructing each human life across place and time.
Genealogy is the story of who we are and how we came to be, as individuals and societies.