Dr. Lee Croft

I am most proud to be a University of Arizona MA-Russian alumnus, class of 1970. The professors there then, including Head Joe Malik, Jr., Boriss Roberts, Nicholas Vontsolos (now retired from Phoenix Central High and living in Phoenix), and Delbert Phillips (later Head Margaret Gibson was a fellow student) were all very good to me and recommended me to the doctoral program at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York, where I was given a "full ride," earning the Ph.D. in Slavic and General Linguistics with minor in Russian Literature in June 1973. By that time I had served as an instructor of Serbo-Croatian for a semester at Colgate University in Hamilton, New York, and I was then hired as Assistant Professor of Linguistics at Cornell to supervise intensive Russian language instruction in the summer of 1973--a non-tenure-track position. But Joe Malik had informed his ASU colleague, Sandy Couch, about my completion of the Ph.D. and the fact that I was looking for a job...and Sandy Couch called me, his one-time RUS-101 student (Fall 1966 at ASU), and told me to send my application in to my B.S. alma mater. In two weeks of August 1973 I was moving with my wife and three small children back to Tempe, Arizona, with a tenure-track appointment as Assistant Professor of Russian.

I have recently (May 15, 2011) retired as the Senior Professor of Russian at ASU, having taught there for 38 years. I was the Coordinator of Russian and Slavic Languages there for 35 years and am the co-founding Director of the ASU Melikian Center for Russian, Eurasian, and East European Studies' CRITICAL LANGUAGES INSTITUTE. I am the author of RUSSIAN IN ARIZONA (IHHS, Phoenix/Perm, 2006...see www.lulu.com/LeeCroft ) which profiles the University of Arizona program and faculty as well as all others in the State. I'm sure Terry has a copy and you definitely can use whatever from it you need. I'm attaching the cover. I am now residing in Phoenix part of the year, in Flagstaff part of the year, and in two residences in Hawaii (Waikiki on Oahu and Poipu on Kauai).

I definitely see the University of Arizona's superb Russian MA program as a major potentiator in my life. The faculty there, with whom I have maintained close relations for years, is a truly wonderful group of people, diverse in personality and outlook, but unified in their daily advancement of the students. It's one of America's GREAT academic programs, competently led by a woman who really understands what education is all about.