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2011 Presenters

Carol Just
Oral Historian

Carol Just, St. Louis Park, MN, is a native of rural Berlin, LaMoure County, ND. Her roots run deep in McIntosh County, ND, where all great-grandparents and seven great-great grandparents homesteaded after emigrating from South Russia in the 1880's.

St Andrew's Lutheran, located along Beaver Creek in McIntosh County has been her family's spiritual anchor since 1893 when her ancestors chartered the church as "Andreas Gemeinde."  It became a "Beacon on the Prairie" for the settlers - eventually sponsoring four other parishes in the region. Settle back and learn about this community with story and song as Carol and members of the St. Andrew's Centennial Choir take you on a journey from Germany to South Russia to North America.

  Paul E. Nyren
NDSU Extension Service Central Grasslands Research Center Director

Homer Rudolf
Professor of Music Emeritus, University of Richmond and Glueckstal Colonies Research Association Coordinator

All of his ancestors came to the U.S. from the Glückstal Colonies between 1884 and 1889, homesteading in McIntosh County, Dakota Territory, and he was raised in Wishek. He received a Ph.D. in Musicology from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, and taught at the University of Texas, Austin, and the University of Richmond, Richmond, VA. He currently serves as Coordinator for the Glückstal Colonies Research Association (GCRA) and was the editor and a contributor to two books published by GCRA. He also was the chief researcher and script writer for “A Soulful Sound: Music of the Germans from Russia,” produced by Prairie Public TV in 2005.


Donald P. Schwert
NDSU Professor of Geology

Dr. Donald P. Schwert is a professor of Geology at North Dakota State University, where he has served for 33 years.  Schwert’s interests center on human interactions with landscapes, and thus he has been active in regional issues centered on flooding, landslides, and soil contaminants.  Schwert currently directs NDSU’s Center for Science & Mathematics Education.  A native of Upstate New York, Schwert traces his own Germanic lineages to West Prussia, Sachsen, Baden, Hesse-Cassel, and Rheinbayern. 


Ronald J. Vossler
Humanities Scholar and Speaker

A free-lance writer and independent humanities scholar, Ron Vossler has received numerous writing awards and honors, including his appointment to the International Committee of the Ukrainian World Congress, as well as, in 2009, being named as Associate North Dakota Poet Laureate.

Vossler has also authored eight popular and scholarly books, along with articles, fiction, essays, and poems appearing in scholarly journals, magazines, anthologies, newspapers, and on public education and humanities web-sites.

His recently completed movie script, Angel from the Flames, is based on research conducted in Ukraine on a recent Fulbright Fellowship (2010); and he is currently completing his next book, In the Palaces and Caverns of Memory: My Search for Hitler's Steppe Children. He lives in East Grand Forks, Minnesota.


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