Professional Staff

Jeremy Kopp
Interim Director | Outreach & Operations Coordinator
Phone: 701-231-6596

Wyatt Atchley, M.A.
Special Collections Archivist
Phone: 701-231-8141

Part-Time Staff

JJ Kresky
Graduate Assistant

Sydney Guida
Student Assistant


Michael Miller, M.Ed., M.S.
Emeritus Director
Phone: 701-231-8416


Michael Miller is Emeritus Director of the Germans from Russia Heritage Collection. Michael retired from NDSU on December 1, 2022, after 55 years and 5 months as a staff member at North Dakota State University Libraries.

Researching the Germans from Russia: Annotated Bibliography of the Germans from Russia Heritage Collection, was compiled by Michael Miller, published by the North Dakota State Institute of Regional Studies, 1987. Miller's higher education degrees are Bachelor of Science, (English, Journalism, Library Science) Valley City State University, Valley City, ND; Master of Science andMaster of Education, (Library/ Media Education, Secondary Education) University of North Dakota, Grand Forks. Miller attended elementary and secondary schools in Strasburg, in south central North Dakota.

At the Valley City State University homecoming events in October 2002, Miller received the Award of Merit from the Alumni Association. In April 2003, Miller donated to the Allen Memorial Library, Valley City State University, a special collection of learning resources about the Germans from Russia including books, maps, and videotapes. In 1990, the Mountain Plains Library Association presented Miller with the Distinguished Service Award.

The Johannes Baumgartner Story and Genealogy: Bicentennial Edition: 1774 - 1974 compiled by John J. Baumgartner, Jr., was published in 1974.

Growing up in a North Dakota German-Russian Community
Michael Miller's hometown of Strasburg was settled primarily by Catholic Black Sea German immigrants who came to south-central North Dakota in the 1880s from the former German villages near Odessa, Ukraine. His Müller grandparents immigrated to North Dakota in 1889 from the Catholic village of Krasna, Bessarabia. His Baumgartner grandparents immigrated to North Dakota from the Catholic village of Strassburg, Kutschurgan District, South Russia (today near Odessa, Ukraine).

Miller grew up speaking both English and German and became interested in the heritage, culture and history of his ancestors. An important focus throughout Miller's life and career has been the preservation and documentation of the rich heritage within the German-Russian community in North America.

Miller's hometown on the Dakota prairies became well-known, due to one of North Dakota's most famous native sons. Bandleader Lawrence Welk was born in a sod house on a farmstead near Strasburg homesteaded by his Catholic Black Sea German-Russian parents. Mr. Welk conducted America's most famous television orchestra, with The Lawrence Welk Show entertaining North American television audiences for 27 years. Miller's friendship with the Welk family in Strasburg led to locating the musical archives of Lawrence Welk, being donated to NDSU in 1993.

The Lawrence Welk Collection is housed at the NDSU Archives, North Dakota State University Libraries, Fargo. For further information, contact: or 701-231-8914.


Pamela Burkhardt
Collections Manager (part-time)