Steve Grant: An Autobiography

Born in Portland, Oregon, February 14, 1944
Son of Evelyn DiGiorgio and Wilbur J. Grant
Godson of Sal DiGiorgio
Brother of Philip Gary Grant

Born, then raised in Portland, Oregon—with many intermediate stops between in other cities and states. Moved to Los Altos CA before eighth grade in 1957. Completed high school there.

Got degrees from Pomona College (B.A., History, 1966, magna cum laude) and Harvard University (Ph.D., Russian History, 1973).

Married Sharon Sforzini in August 1965; son Elliot Thomas born in May 1970.

Current address:  9206 Aldershot Drive, Bethesda, MD 20817; second home: 19 Lakeside Trail, Carroll Valley, PA 17320

Career: Taught at The George Washington University from 1972 to 1977, then was a Research Associate of the Kennan Institute for Advanced Russian Studies (Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars), both in Washington, DC. In 1978 to 1980 was a freelance researcher and writer, turning out articles, research reports, etc.

From 1980 until retirement in 2004 worked for the former U.S. Information Agency, now the Department of State. Was chief of the RUC branch of the State Dept.’s Office of Research and Media Reaction, conducting public opinion surveys in the former USSR and producing qualitative studies of social, cultural, media, and political developments in that region.

In 1982 to 1985 served as an assistant cultural affairs officer at the American Embassy in Moscow. During June 1992, spent three weeks in Kiev, Ukraine, as Acting Public Affairs Officer for the American Embassy. The following year (June to August 1993) was in Bishkek, capital of the Kyrgyz Republic, doing the same thing—both times accompanied by wife Sharon.

Author of a monograph on an aspect of Russian social and cultural history:  The Russian Nanny, Real and Imagined (2012); and two reference works: A Scholars’ Guide to Washington, D.C. for Russian/Soviet Studies (Smithsonian Institution Press, 3rd ed. 1995, with slightly altered title) and (with John H. Brown) The Russian Empire and Soviet Union: A Guide to Manuscripts and Archival Materials in the United States (G.K. Hall, 1981). The latter has been digitized. In its original form it appears on the Library of Congress European Reading Room website. A fully machine-readable and editable version is now hosted by the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Edited Soviet Housing and Urban Design (GPO, 1980). Articles have appeared in the Slavic Review, Kritika, Soviet Union/Union Sovietique, The Russian Review, International Journal of Public Opinion Research, Canadian American Slavic Studies, Slavonic and East European Review, and other publications.  A major revisionist article, “The Russian Gentry Family: A Contrarian View,” appeared in the Jahrbucher fur Geschichte Osteuropas, band 60, heft 1, in 2012.

Likes, interests, hobbies: Love to play—games, sports, competitions—anything, any time, anywhere. Passion for tennis (doubles more than singles these days) and golf (16 handicap at my best) and movies (mostly older); have dabbled in many other racket sports (e.g., badminton in grad school and at GW), platform tennis in Moscow, squash, ping pong, racquetball; love to read.  Poker (Texas Hold ’em) and travel are also time-budgeted.

One Comment

Henry Craven

Bit of a random message but

Bit of a random message but am currently a third year History undergraduate student at the University of Southampton. I'm currently writing my dissertation on "Examining Contemporary Debate over the usefulness of the 'mir' in Imperial Russia 1861-1906" and have just successfully received your thesis as part of an inter-library loan request from Harvard University. I was somewhat taken aback by both its frankly gargantuan proportions and also wanted to express my admiration for such a comprehensive work on the subect. Hopefully this will allow me to finish my university career on a high with a top mark and I just wanted to say how impressed I was!

All the Best from England,

Henry Craven


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