photo of grigory

I was born and raised in Moscow, Russia. In 1974, I graduated from Moscow State University where I majored in Human Geography. In terms of my training and perspective, I owe much to Yuri Medvedkov, my Ph.D advisor (now professor at Ohio State), and to several other Russian-trained colleagues, particularly to Mikhail Krylov, Dmitry Lukhmanov, Andrei Treivish, and Zhanna Zayonchkovskaya.

In 1989, I immigrated to the United States with my wife, Yelena, and my children, Michael and Natasha. Lynn, Massachusetts was our gateway community, but Radford University in Radford, Virginia has been my only place of work in America. In 1995, my family and I proudly became US citizens. I am indebted to many fellow Americans, particularly to George Demko of Dartmouth College (my most lasting American friend and mentor) and to several colleagues and friends from Radford -- Glenn Embrey, Nat Kranowski, Bernd Kuennecke, Lori LeMay, Don Samson, and Susan Woodward.

Currently, I work in Virginia as a professor of geography at Radford University. Some courses I have taught over the past 19 years include World Regional Geography, Economic Geography, Population Geography, Geography of Europe, and Geography of the Middle East.

I am well traveled in the former Soviet Union. I have visited 13 out of 15 of its former republics and many regions of Russia from Kaliningrad in the west to Chukotka in the east and from Chechnya and N. Ossetia in the south to Murmansk in the north. I spent months in field trips in the outlying rural areas of Central Russia, where the sense of remoteness induced by poor roads and general neglect belies these areas' proximity (100-150 km) to major urban clusters. I am also well traveled in Europe where I visited 22 countries and I lived and worked in some of them for weeks and months at a time.

My major completed research projects are a) A Troubled Realm: Russian Agriculture's Spatial Constraints, Variance, and Prospects for Revival, funded by the National Science Foundation, and b) Understanding Belarus, a project for which I did not receive major funding and yet published a book and several articles. My paper "Culture wars, Soul-Searching, and Belarusian Identity," presented at the symposium "The Arts, National Identity and Politics in Belarus" (Harvard University, October 14-15, 2005), reflects some of my Belarus project’s major findings.

Check out my Publications and Grants pages to find out more about my recent and past accomplishments.