2008 Librarian of the Year Recipient

2008 Librarian of the Year Citation

NDSU Libraries Reception Honoring Michael M. Miller

Certificate of Appreciation, American Historical Society of Germans from Russia

Colleague Appreciations

Dear Michael:

Most hearty and sincere congratulations for the distinctive honor of being named 2008 Librarian of the Year by the North Dakota Library Association.

Having known you personally for a number of years and your dedication to the preservation of our unique German from Russia heritage, it is obvious to me that if anyone is entitled to this special honor, Michael Miller's name should be at the head of the list.

Please accept my personal acknowledgment and thanks for all you have accomplished and continue to do for the Germans from Russia..

Most sincerely,
Arthur and Cleora Flegel
Menlo Park, California


For all the work you've done to preserve and disseminate G-R historical and cultural material,
you truly deserve the honor! I don't know of any other librarians who have this kind of an outreach.

Alex and Nancy Herzog
Boulder, Colorado


I am beyond thrilled about the wonderful honor bestowed upon you. Your tireless efforts on behalf of Germans from Russia throughout the world are now recognized and honored beyond the Germans from Russia community.

Over these decades of service, you have not only helped to make the ethnic and cultural term "Germans from Russia," a proud title for all of us, but you have skillfully put that title and information about it "out there" for the masses to recognize and respect. A great accomplishment.

Congratulations, my friend!
Carol Just
St. Louis Park, Minnesota


This is simply terrific! Bravo to you! It's a great recognition and well-deserved. I strongly believe that, as our heritage societies (GRHS and AHSGR) struggle to stay afloat, it's so important to have the GRHC with an institutional home at a large state university. I'm grateful that you had the vision to take this on and to nurture and develop it over the years.

Best Wishes
Allyn Brooz
Washington, DC

Dear Michael.

I want to line up with the thousands of friends you made over the years in celebrating your achievement award. As a friend and brother your work is unmatched.We all benefit from it. Our ancestors' life in Russia will never be forgotten.

Alfred Opp
Vancouver, British Columbia

Mr. Miller,

Congratulations on being named 2008 Librarian of the Year by the North Dakota Library Association!  From everything I have seen, heard about you and read this is an honor that you richly deserve.  As your citation indicates your impact has reached far beyond the local campus and your state and indeed you have made a worldwide impact. Well done and a special thank you for the services and support provided to me and countless others.

While not having a lot of time to spend on research concerning Germans from Russia I have found the material provided by many and coordinated by you to be extremely valuable.  My interest in this area grew out of conversations which I had with my wife's grandfather who would tell me little more about his background than to say he was a German from Russia.  That reluctance to say little more than that really was the source of my interest and motivation.  He has passed on but his brief cryptic comments have driven me to find out as much as I could about his background.  While I have retired and am doing volunteer work in many areas and directions I still want to make a spring or fall swing through Hosmer, SD and also visit some of there search centers such as yours before I get too old to do that.

Keep up the excellent work and a very special thanks for your service to the Germans from Russia.  That rich heritage shall never be forgotten thanks to you!

Edwin Anderson
Columbia, South Carolina

Hi Michael,

You are very welcome - and very deserving of this prestigious award! Margaret received the copy, which was nicely written.

I've suggested you could also be named "Mr. Germans-from-Russia" - you certainly have been the "shoulder behind the wheel" for the Germans from Russia Community. We are all in your debt, and are very grateful for all that you do.

Connie Dahlke
Lodi, California

Dear Michael,

Congratulations, and how very appropriate and deserving that you have been named 2008 North Dakota Librarian of the Year.

I concur with all the good things that are being said about you and your dedication to discovering and preserving our history. I’m personally grateful for the assistance you’ve given me and my family in discovering where we come from.

Thanks and all best wishes to you,

Linda Chapman
Associate Artistic Director
New York Theatre Workshop
Manhattan, New York

Congratulations to you, Michael! This honor is well-deserved for all you do.

Miriam Palm
Librarian Emerita
Stanford University Libraries
Stanford, California

Michael, Congratulations! This is a very nice and much deserved honor!

Dr. William Wiest
Professor Emeritus
Reed College
Portland, Oregon

Dear Michael,

Congratulations! It's an honor that is well deserved. You have been Librarian of the Year for some of us for decades! We hope that you will celebrate, even though the honor doesn't bring you any extra money.


Dr. Lewis and Dr. Dona-Reeves Marquardt
Austin, Texas

Congratulations for a very deserved honor!! Well Done!

Best wishes,

Irma Bossert Gfeller
Lind, Washington

Congratulation Michael. Thanks for everything you do to preserve our heritage and history. It is much appreciated.

Paulette Tobin, Writer
Grand Forks Herald
Grand Forks, North Dakota

My deepest  thanks for your work for those Germans who came before us and who are blended into a special group of people you have so passionately given their due!


Joanne Hertz Townsend
Montague, Michigan

Bravo Michael! You truly deserve this award and the acknowledgement given to you for all your dedicated and determined work. I truly appreciate your preservation of our fascinating heritage. You have touched my heart and I extend mine to yours. Bravo! And thanks!


Bryan Brost
Armstrong, British Columbia

Please extend my congratulations to Mr. Miller. I worked for him as a work study student soon after he arrived at the library during the fall, winter and spring of 1970-71. I found him to be a reasonable supervisor for a freshmen student fresh from the prairies of central North Dakota. Who know he would be the champion of our shared heritage. Thank You.

Allen R. Sayler
Vice President
International Dairy Foods Association
Washington, D.C.

My congratulations to Michael Miller. No other ethnic group in our area has the resources we have at hand because of Mr. Miller. He has inspired hundreds of people to learn about their families and provided an invaluable resource to writers and biographers.

Niomi Rohn Phillips

Michael - What a wonderful honor to be chosen the North Dakotan Librarian of the year. Thanks for all the wonderful & helpful things you have done for the Germans from Russia. Especially, the documenting of the history of our ancestors. I do believe alot of the information would have been lost if Michael would not have taken this special interest. Thank You.

Bernadine Lang Kuhn
Owatonna, Minnesota

Michael --- Congratulations on receiving the honor the North Dakota Library Association has bestowed upon you.  In reading the narrative about your work, I truly understand how deserving you are in receiving this award. I look forward to meeting you on one or our trips from Sartell to Jamestown or Medina.

Again, my congratulations

Arve Moser
Sartell, Minnesota


My congratulations to you as well. You have done a fantastic job and you have opened up to so many of us to our heritage. Thank you for enriching our lives! And thank you for your attentions that you give all of us. We appreciate you so much. Have a great celebration and I'll be thinking of you!

Colleen Zeiler
Granbury, Texas

Congratulations, Michael! I can't think of anyone more deserving of this award than you. I am so proud of you and honored to know you.

Jo Ann Winistorfer
Hazen, North Dakota

Congratulations Michael for a well deserving award. I'm proud to have been a part of your beginning efforts of preserving the history and culture of this important North Dakota ethnic group when I worked with you in the Institute for Regional Studies. Wishing you continued success.

Your former library colleague

Ardis Danielson
Fargo, North Dakota

Michael, congratulations! That's a wonderful acknowledgement of your great work and tireless contributions. I hope you have a wonderful time at the reception, and let me thank you personally for all you've done for our culture and history.

Warmest regards

Laureen Darr
Calgary, Alberta


Congratulations on this outstanding recognition. As German from Russian who lives outside of the Dakota's I appreciate your efforts to preserve the historical information associated with my ethnicity group and your cooperation with other organizations as well. The amount of data provided online and through these emails has been wonderful. Thanks again.

Kyle Geiszler

Congratulations to you Michael Milller for you lifes work on being named LIBRARIAN of the Year. I am proud to have known you for many years. I live so far away but I still can keep up with all of GRHC news that you come out with on line. THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

God Bless You.

Martin Marquardt
Casto Valley, California

Hello again Michael,

Many congratulations to you! And again I thank you for all your encouragement & advice re my family. I agree, this recognition is well deserved. Cheers to Michael from Canada!

Gloria Sven
Vancouver, British Columbia

Hi Michael:

Congratulations on being named the 2008 Librarian of the Year by the North Dakota Library Association. What an honor. I know you have put forth much effort so it is good to see you honored.

My only sister was a grade school librarian, and she was honored after she passed away. She used to have Beatrix Potter tea parties for the first graders. There were also parades honoring local authors. When she got enough money collected from book fairs, etc., she bought carpeting for the library, and one three-day weekend the janitors and various others came and laid it. I still have the video honoring her for her efforts.

Anyway, the best to you.

Lois Klaus
Portland, Oregon

Congratulations Mr. Miller! I've been amazed at the wonderful collection and the amazing trips to the homeland. You are most deserving of this award.

Patti Wilcox
Grand Pass, Oregon

Hello Michael,

I was happy to hear of your award of Librarian of the Year. You certainly deserve it. You have done an outstanding job of carrying the torch of illuminating our rich ancestry, and I thank you for it.

We have been back in America for 13 years and I miss Germany so very much. I often think of our lunch in France with the Martins in 1996, I believe, before the first trip to Russia. I still hope to go one day.


Susan Bischke Brandt


Congratulations on receiving the 2008 Librarian of the Year award! What a great honor and recognition of the wonderful work you have done with the German-Russian Heritage.

Fr. Al M. Bitz
Jamestown, North Dakota

Hi Michael,

Great news. I am so proud of your ongoing contributions and feel satisfied that you are being honored for your untiring work. I would like to be at this "party" in your honor and will be in spirit. Just came back from Strasburg and a very successful pheasant hunt. Thanks again for the excellent work on the Miller genealogy.


Pi Miller
Bothell, Washington

Dear Michael,

Congratulations on your 2008 Library Award. You most certainly deserve it. You have put a Smile on many a heart. And given treasured History information to many of us. I enjoy all your emails that you send to me.

God Bless You

Joanne Zacher

Dear Michael:

I just read about your selection as the ND Librarian of the Year. Congratulations.

I certainly agree with the words that Kathy Thomas uses in her nomination. I recall much of our time together in those words.

Best wishes,

Dr. Richard Board
Professor Emeritus
Department of English, NDSU

Congratulations Michael! You have made my life much richer because of your passion and dedication to preserving the written, physical and oral history of the Germans from Russia. Thank you. You are most deserving of this award.

Elizabeth "Bettsy" (Doll/Madison) Williams
Missoula, Montana

Congratulations! We are all so proud of you. You deserve this recognition. You have done a great job helping to preserve the history of the Germans from Russia.


Dr. Philip Reiswig
Redlands, California

Hi Michael;

It will not suprise you to hear that I read and reread parts of your Russia, Germany and Beyond,  every evening. Sounds like years of work, endless trips,  and miles of walking though the special areas that made this famous book,  personal family history. Thank you again for you great accomplishment, I for one am grateful,  and read a couple chapters nightly.

Good luck to you, stay healthy. 

Rose Miller (O'Brien) Scheuerell
Reno, Nevada

Hi Mike,

Congratulations on being named North Dakota Librarian of the Year! I’m sure that’s a very well-deserved honor. Thank you for all the hard work and dedication you’ve contributed over the years to preserving our Germans from Russia history and heritage. And thank you for being a pillar in the North Dakota educational system, representing education, learning and excellence. You’re an inspiration!

Best of health,

Jerry Klein
San Juan Capistrano, California

Congratulations, Michael, on a well deserved honor.  What you have done to preserve the heritage of the Germans from Russia is immeasurable!  You are an ispiration to all of us as we work to pass some knowledge of our heritage on to the next generation.

Wilbur and Susan Schlecht
Enderlin, North Dakota

Mega-Congratulations on your award. 

Blessings to you for all you've done and all you continue to do for those of us,who's families came from Germany, through Russia, educating us and the public and bringing the deserved honor to our forefathers, great grandparents and grandparents... for their sacrafices and hardships, so my generation and future generations could live in freedom and have a better life..

I think you should get the Nobel Peace Prize for all you've done for Russia and America relations!

Marge Jergentz-Stout
Livermore, California 

Michael -- Congratulations on your recent award!!! It is great you have gotten recognition for all the fine work you have done.  In addition to a everything else you have accomplished, without your dedication and efforts, I and so many, many others would never have visited our homeland and had the benefit of this once in a lifetime experience.

Thank you so much!! 

Janis Weisz Piotrowski
Tallahassee, Florida


Congratulations!  How very proud you must be for being recognized for all of your hard work and your dedication to the preservation and history of the Germans from Russia. This most prestigious award has definately gone to a man who has made all of us researching our family history a much easier task.  I am sure there are many people who are so very happy for you and your achievements.

I am new to the genealogy field but have found you to be extremely helpful and personal in my few conversations I have had with you. 

My very best wishes to you, Michael

Judy Walker
Seattle, Washington

Dear Michael:

Oct. 30 was a very special day to celebrate you being named Librarian of the Year.  It is a well-deserved honor.

Kathy Thomas said you were totally surprised when you received the honor.  There were several times that I almost blew the surprise, but thankfully I didn't.

Your dedication built the Germans from Russia Heritage Collection into an internationally recognized resource.  You are very deserving of this honor.


Dr. Ann Braaten, Curator
Emily P. Reynolds Historic Costume Collection
Department of Apparel, Design, Facility and Hospitality Management
College of Human Development and Education


Thank you for the kind email.  Congratulations, again, on your wonderful award.  It was a lovely celebration and was nice to see some familiar faces!  The collection looks wonderful and seems busy as ever.  It is a joy to see how far GRHC has come in just the last few years.  You should be very proud.

Again, congratulations and best wishes with the season ahead.

Jessica Holkup
Emily P. Reynolds Historic Costume Collection
Department of Apparel, Design, Facility and Hospitality Management
College of Human Development and Education, NDSU

Belated congratulations, Mike, on your winning the 2008 Librarian of the Year Award.  What a great honor, as recognition for your over 40 years of hard work and service.  But then, your roots lie in Germans from Russia, which is synonymous with hard work.  You make your parents and grandparents proud!
Ted J. Becker
Minneapolis, Minnesota

Dear Michael,

I also want to send my congratulations for the well-deserved honor of becoming the 2008 North Dakota Librarian of the Year. What you have achieved for the Russian Germans and for North Dakota State University goes a thousand miles beyond your library position--the Heritage Collection, local preservation activities, tours, videos, valuable publications, invaluable international connections, and so the list continues. You are imaginative and enthusiastic, and your energy and spirit inspire those around you. You have set a high standard for all other Russian-German organizations. May you continue your praise-worthy work for many more years, and may you never grow weary.

My best wishes for a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year,

Dr. Irma Eichhorn
San Jose, California

Permission to use any images from the GRHC website may be requested by contacting Michael M. Miller