Ruth Gonzalez is the involved with the Voices in Time and mtDNA haplogroup C projects. She is a retired teacher and a genealogist. She lives with her husband and her Morkie.
Answer: I am now a housewife and semi-retired. I worked as an assistant teacher for 25 years, the first 7 years were with school age children and afterwards I worked 18 years with preschool children.
Question: What are your other hobbies and interests apart from genealogy?
Answer: I love taking photographs, learning more about my Morkie who is 16 months old and learning about our history.
Question: What brought you to genealogy? What is your favorite part?
Answer: I cannot remember what brought me to genealogy, it was so long ago. My favorite part of genealogy is finding new ancestors to add to my tree and being able to get marriage records about them. After a few years of working with my tree I was finally able to find new ancestors in other towns besides the town of Aguadilla and Isabela Puerto Rico, where my parents are from and also relating those new finds to my parents. My mother loves to hear about the new info and my dad keeps asking me over the phone if I am still looking for the dead. 🙂
Question: How did you become involved in genetic genealogy?
Answer: I tested and started getting invites from others that were somehow related to me. Though with the ones that were tested I have not found a connection. I have found connections with those that have worked on their genealogy though.
Question: The need for consumer genetic testing standards has been a topic for years now. To what extent do you think government regulation is needed? Do you feel that the responsibility for consumer education lies with the testing companies, the citizen science community, or the consumer?
Answer: I really have not given this topic much thought other than to want my genetic testing to be shared only by me if I so choose to do so. I feel that our results should be kept private by us and that no one should have access to it unless as I mentioned we choose to share it.
Question: What DNA tests have you taken?
Answer: mtDNA and autosomal.
Question: Have you tested your family?
Answer: Yes, my dad, brother, cousins and husband.
Question: Have your or your family’s test results ever been a surprise?
Answer: No, not really. But interesting. I have found my maternal and paternal haplogroups and those of my maternal grandfather and my paternal grandmother. My paternal haplogroups are: E-L17 and C1b2, my maternal haplogroups are U5b1b1b and I-Z60.
Question: Do you have advice for someone starting out in genealogy or genetic genealogy DNA?
Answer: My advice would be to work as much as you can with your genealogy and find genealogy groups that would help you to expand your tree. I have found two such groups and with their help I was able to expanded my tree, I have also found genealogists from Puerto Rico that have an extended amount of information and are willing to help. I’ve been very lucky and very appreciative with the help they have given me.
Question: What do you think the future holds for genetic genealogy and adoptee testing?
Answer: I honestly do not know. Unless a person who has tested gets a result claiming that their match is a parent, sibling or first cousin. If it is a distant cousin I feel it is a lost cause. You can work with an adoptee if the match is a close one, otherwise there is no way of knowing who the family were. I’ve had a few contact me, but the relationship were distant and I had no way of knowing who their ancestors could have been, especially when they themselves do not have info. I tell them that no member in my family were given away for adoption, at least from those in my generation or my parent’s generation.
Question: Why did you decide to be a project administrator?
Answer: At the time there were no Haplogroup C when I had received the results for my dad, husband and cousin, all three were haplogroup C. So I got in contact with FTDNA and they made me administrator of that group, if I remember correctly.