Staff Biographies | Concordia Language Villages

Staff Biographies

Get acquainted with our wonderful program staff!

Credit Teachers

Two-Week Program Staff

Administrative Staff

Kitchen Staff

Credit Teachers

Всем привет! My name is Yulia, I am from Novosibirsk, Russia. I am a professor at Novosibirsk State University. This is my fourth year at Lesnoe Ozero. I am a 4-week program teacher and a song leader. I love Russian poems and songs, so this is a great opportunity to share them with everyone!


Hi! My name is Andrei. I was born and raised in Russia, but now I live in Chicago, Illinois, where I am pursuing my PhD in Russian literature at the University of Illinois, Chicago. I used to be an English teacher and I am glad to switch to my native language. It's my third year at Lesnoe Ozero and I am sure we'll have a lot of fun!


Hello! My name is Ksyousha. I was born in Uzbekistan. I have lived in Ukraine, Russian, and In Kazakhstan. I received my Master’s degree in philology at Moscow State University. I like to dance and eat plov, manty, borsch, and vinegret. This is my first summer at Lesnoe Ozero and I am so excited to be here!


                                                        Hello! My name is Grusha!


                                                           Hello! My name is Katya!    


Two-Week Program Staff

Всем привет! My name is Taras. This is my second year working at the village and I attended the village as a camper for three years. I have been studying Russian for 5 years and have been to Russia twice. Outside of Lesnoe Ozero I attend Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University where I am studying to be a pilot.


Всем привет! My name is Kristina. I live in both Chicago and Florida. This is my first year at Lesnoe Ozero, and I'm super excited to share my love for the Russian language. I started learning Russian when I left to study abroad in Moldova for a year. I strongly believe that immersion is the best way to learn a language. I enjoy playing games with the villagers, visiting the banya, singing songs, and playing sports.


Hello! My name is Margosha. I’m currently a PhD student at the University of Kansas, where I study Slavic linguistics with a focus on second language acquisition. I've been learning Russian for my entire adult life, and I also study German and Polish. As a child I went to the German Language Village (Waldsee) for many summers, and have been working at Lesnoe Ozero for five years. In my free time I like to read and listen to music.


Привет! Меня зовут Оксана! Hi, my name Oksana and this is my third year at Lesnoe Ozero. Here at camp I'm a counselor, a teacher and the waterfront manager! In my free time I like reading, knitting, and listening to music. In the fall I'll be moving to Kazan, Russia to teach English with EF Education.


Ekaterina is working at Lesnoe Ozero for her fourth year. She is from Chapel Hill, North Carolina, and studied Russian and geology at McGill University. She recently completed a year of service with AmeriCorps, during which she worked as a science instructor in an elementary/middle school in Baltimore. Her hobbies include partner dancing, improv comedy, and playing the fiddle.


Hello! My name is Nadezhda! I was born and grew up around Moscow. Regarding my education - I am an aircraft engineer, and I worked on the team, which invented the MIG-29. My first experience working with children was in Russia, where I worked as a volunteer at the Youth center through the American Baptist Church, which was founded by my grandfather in my home city of Dedovsk. There, I taught English for children from the age of 4 to 14.

I have lived in the United States for 10 years. I have worked for 4 years as a teacher of Russian and mathematics at the Russian Heritage School at the University of Illinois. I also teach online Russian classes.

I love to cook, collect mushrooms, go fishing, travel, and also learn new things. I also love to talk with people and sing.


Hi, I am Valya! I live in St. Petersburg, Russia. There, I’m the assistant director at an orphanage. This is my ninth summer at Lesnoe Ozero. I’m a teacher in the two-week program and live in the cabin Odessa.


Привет, меня зовут Нина. Я родилась в городе Миннеаполисе  в штате Миннесоте и там выросла, но жила в Городе Кишинёве в Молдавии год. Теперь в реальной жизни я студентка. В свободное время я люблю читать и заниматься спортом.

Hello, my name is Nina. I was born and raised in Minneapolis, Minnesota but lived in Chisinau, Moldova for a year. In my real life outside of camp I am a student. In my free time I like to workout and read.     

Hello! My name is Dina! I am from Indiana and study at NYU. It is my first year at Lesnoe Ozero! I learned Russian from my parents who are both from Saint Petersburg making me a first generation American. In my free time I like to play guitar, sing, and do theatre.


Hello! My name is Vanya! I am from Moscow, Russia and I am studying International Relations at Moscow State University of International Relations. In my free time, I like listening to music, joking with friends, and exploring new places. It is my first year at Lesnoe Ozero and I am so excited to be here.


                                                         Hello! My name is Alina!


                                                    Hello! My name is Lyosha


                                                      Hello! My name is Lyonya!


                                                         Hello! My name is Slava!


                                                       Hello! My name is Kolya!


                                                      Hello! My name is Vlad!


Administrative Staff

Hi! My name is Anton. I live in Moscow, where I work as a teacher of Russian language and literature. I began to work with kids in camps and schools when I was still a student. Working with kids is incredibly inspiring and encourages constant self-growth. I love learning new things and singing, and I dream of someday taking a trip around the world!

Privet! I am Карина! This is my 16th summer on staff.  I live in the Minneapolis area with my family, where I work at an elementary school. I spent almost 4 years living in St. Petersburg, Russia first as a student and later working as a resident director for the University of Illinois Study Abroad Program. I earned a Master’s Degree in Slavic Literatures and Linguistics from the University of Illinois. I also had the opportunity to participate in a. Fulbright Teacher summer program in Namibia. Last summer (along with Lara and Natasha) I visited Forest Camp, an English language adventure camp on the river Don, near Lipetsk, Russia This collaboration was sponsored by the US Embassy Peer to Peer Program.


Всем привет! My name is Nikolai. This is my second year at Lesnoe Ozero. I’m originally from Ekaterinburg, Russia, but I live in Wisconsin. I’m currently a film student at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. At the camp, I work as both a counselor and a photographer/blogger. I enjoy filmmaking, photography, and sports!


Всем привет! My name is Nadia. This is my first year at Lesnoe Ozero, where I am working as a two-week counselor and blogger. I’m originally from Minnesota, but I will be spending the next year in Omsk, Russia as a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant. I love dancing, singing, and eating the amazing food that our kitchen prepares!


                                             Hello! My name is Vasya!


My name is Tatyana. This is my 11th year at the Russian Village and my 5th year on staff. At camp I am the resident balalaika and domra player. In my real life I graduated from Luther College in Decorah, Iowa where I doubled majored in Russian Studies and Religion. While at Luther College I played Rugby as well as performing in the Luther College Balalaika Ensemble, where I played not only the Balalaika but also the alto domra. After camp I will be moving to Tolyatti, Russia to teach English!


Kitchen Staff

Hi, my name is Tamara. I am the chef for Lesnoe Ozero.  I have worked for Concordia Language Villages since the summer of 1988. Most of those years have been with the Russian Village.   During the school year Concordia Language Villages caters meals for Schoolcraft Learning Community and I have had the privilege of managing that kitchen for the past 10 years.  In my free time, I like to work in my yard, play games and spend time with my family. 


Yan graduated from St. Olaf College with a degree in Russian language and area studies. He is currently a renowned baker among friends, family, and consumers of his baked goods.