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Germans from Russia

This page contains information about famous people of Germans from Russia descent.  The famous people listed here are from all walks of life including doctors, newspaper and media giants, athletes, actors & actresses, politicians, and musicians. 

You can review their stories and accomplishments by clicking either their picture or Review link.  Some of these have personal stories from SVCGR members which can be found in the Member Stories section of this website - which may also contain photos to accompany this review.
Al Neuharth.jpg
Al Neuharth - Founder of U.S.A. Today
Retired CEO of Gannett Publishing & Media
Born in Eureka, SD to a German-speaking family, Al Neuharth was a giant in the publishing, media, and broadcasting business. Among his accomplishments are the Minneapolis Tribune, Miami Hearld, Detroit Free Press, Florida Today, and U.S.A Today before becoming CEO of Gannett. Al has been a speaker at both AHSGR and GRHS National Conventions.
Lawrence Welk.jpg
Lawrence Welk - Famous TV Host
His music was best known as "champagne music"
Lawrence Welk was an American musician, accordionist, and band leader who hosted the Lawrence Welk Show on TV from 1951 to 1982. He was born in the German-speaking community of Strasburg, ND of Roman Catholic German parents who immigrated 1892 from Odessa, Russia.
Chris Issa.jpg
Chris Isaak - American Musician & Actor
Multiple Grammy Nominated Musician
Born 1956 in Stockton, CA. His father's family was catholic Black Sea German from North Dakota. His mother an Italian immigrant from Genoa. He is known for his signature 1950's Rock and Roll style and coroner sound. He has been called the Roy Orbison of the 1990s and is often compared to Elvis Presley, Ricky Nelson, and Duane Eddy. He was closely associated with film director David Lynch who used his music in numerous films.
Angie Dickinson.jpg
Angie Dickinson - An American Actress
Starred with James Arness, John Wayne, Frank Sinatra
Born 1931 in Kulm, N.D. the daughter of Roman Catholic German descendants.  She moved to Burbank, CA in 1942 and subsequently starred in over 50 films.  She also performed the starring role in numerous TV shows and received many awards. Angie's grandparents were German immigrants from Bessarabia, Russia.
John Denver.jpg
John Denver - A Singer, Songwriter,  Actor, Activist
Composed and Sang the song at the 1984 Winter Olympics
Born Henry John Deutschendorf Jr. on Christmas Eve 1943 in Roswell, N.M. where his father was a U.S. Air Force Pilot.  John achieved great success as a solo singer and hosted the Grammy's five times. Starting in the 1970s he was one of the most popular acoustic guitarist and a top selling performer. He recorded more than 300 songs, 200 of which he wrote. 33 albums and singles were certified gold and platinum. He also made many TV show appearances and received many awards. John's father immigrated from Volga, Russia in 1913.
Philip Anschutz -
An American Billionaire Businessman
Philip Anchutz.jpg
He owns or controls many companies in a variety of industries: energy, railroads, real estate, sports, newspapers, movies, theaters, arenas and music. Born 1939 in Russell, KS, the son of Marion nee Pfister and Frederick Anschutz. His father was an oil tycoon and land investor. Philip was a founder of Major League Soccer and the owner of many soccer, basketball, hockey, and other  professional teams. Philip traces his ancestry to the colony of Nieder-Monjou, Volga, Russia.
Tom Daschle.jpg
Tom Daschle - U.S. Senator from South Dakota
Served in U.S. Airforce, U.S. House of Representatives
and the U.S. Senate
Tom served four terms in the U.S. House of Representatives and two in the U.S. Senate where he was the Majority Leader. Also served as the Secretary of Health and Human Services. Born 1947 in Aberdeen, SD the son of Elizabeth nee Meier and Sebastian Daschle both of Germany descent. Tom's grandparents were Volga German Russians.
Brian Urlacher.jpg
Brian Urlacher - NFL Hall of Famer
Played 13 years with the Chicago Bears
Born 1978 in Pasco, WA. His great-grandfather Lucas Urlacher was born into a Black Sea German family in an area that today belongs to Ukraine. Brian played in eight Pro-Bows and was named NFL Defensive Player of the Year. He was voted into the NFL Hall of Fame 2018.
Carson Wentz.jpg
Carson Wentz - NFL Superbowl Champion
NFL Philadelphia Eagles Quarterback
Born 1978 in Raleigh, NC. He is a descendant of Germans from Russia from the Black Sea village of Worms, Beresan, South Russia. He played his college football at North Dakota State University. He holds four NFL records and nine Eagles records. 
Randy Meisner - Musician
Member of the Eagles 
An American musician, singer, songwriter and founding member of the Eagles. Throughout his professional musical career, Meisner's main role was that of bassist and backing high-harmony vocalist as both a group member and session musician. He co-wrote the Eagles hit song "Take It to the Limit", which he also sang. All four of his grandparents were Volga German immigrants.
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