Witness to History: Reporting from Russia and Central Europe
Andrew Nagorski, who spent more than three decades as an award-winning foreign correspondent and editor for Newsweek, joined the EastWest Institute in August 2008. He is Vice President and Director of Public Policy.
Nagorski served as Newsweek’s bureau chief in Hong Kong, Moscow, Rome, Bonn, Warsaw and Berlin. He served two tours in Moscow, first in the early 1980s and then in the mid-1990s. In 1982, he gained international notoriety when the Soviet government, angry about his enterprising reporting, expelled him from the country.
From January 2000 to July 2008, Nagorski served as senior editor for Newsweek International, handling the editorial cooperation between the parent magazine and its expanding network of foreign language editions. He helped launch several new magazines: Newsweek Arabic in 2000; Newsweek Polska, which has become Poland’s leading newsmagazine since it was launched in 2001; Newsweek Russia in 2004; and Newsweek Argentina in 2006. Nagorski also continued to write reviews and commentaries for Newsweek and countless other publications. He has been honored three times by the Overseas Press Club for his reporting.
In 1988, Nagorski took a one-year leave of absence to work as a senior associate at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace in Washington, D.C. In recent years, he has also served as an adjunct professor at Bard College’s Center for Globalization and International Affairs, teaching a course on international affairs writing. He is a member of the Council of Foreign Relations, and serves on the board of directors of the Polish-American Freedom Foundation. In November 2009, Poland’s Foreign Minister Radoslaw Sikorski presented Nagorski with the newly created Bene Merito award for promoting Poland in the international arena, particularly in the 1980s during the Solidarity era.
Nagorski is the author of the non-fiction books: “Reluctant Farewell: An American Reporter’s Candid Look Inside the Soviet Union” and “The Birth of Freedom: Shaping Lives and Societies in the New Eastern Europe.” His first novel, “Last Stop Vienna,” about a young German who joins the early Nazi movement and then is propelled into a confrontation with Hitler, was on the Washington Post’s bestseller list. His latest non-fiction book is “The Greatest Battle: Stalin, Hitler, and the Desperate Struggle for Moscow That Changed the Course of World War II” (Simon & Schuster, 2007). The New York Review of Books described it as “a new and beautifully researched account of what had been a poorly understood part of the war.” It was a finalist for the Los Angeles Times book prize for history in 2007.
Born in Edinburgh of Polish parents (who shortly after his birth emigrated to the United States), he attended school overseas while his father was in the U.S. foreign service. He earned a B.A. magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from Amherst College in 1969 and studied at the University of Cracow. From 1969 to 1973, he taught social studies at Wayland High School in Massachusetts.
Nagorski and his wife, Christina, have four children.