This month, Hoover Library & Archives (L&A) director Eric Wakin announced that Anatol Shmelev would be honored as the inaugural Robert Conquest Curator for Russia and Eurasia at the L&A. Currently, Shmelev is a research fellow, curator of the Russia and Eurasia Collection, and archivist for the Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty Collection at Hoover L&A. Shmelev’s new position was endowed by John Stephan, professor emeritus of history at the University of Hawaii, to honor the late Robert Conquest, a Hoover fellow, former curator at the L&A, poet, and historian known for his landmark work, The Great Terror, which exposed the humanitarian abuses in Russia under Stalin.
Shmelev received his PhD from the Institute of Russian History, Russian Academy of Sciences, in 1996; his dissertation was on the foreign policy of the Siberian government during the Russian Civil War. He is also the author of Tracking a Diaspora: Émigrés from Russia and Eastern Europe in the Repositories and has published articles in Revolutionary Russia, Kritika: Explorations in Russian and Eurasian History, and other journals. In July 2014, Shmelev began archiving various websites, blogs, and social media to document the conflict in eastern Ukraine; that project later made the international news when one of the blogs archived included a suspicious post tying the separatist forces in eastern Ukraine to the destruction of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17. Currently, Shmelev is responsible for acquiring archival materials from Russia and Eurasia, as well as organizing the preservation of, digitization of, and access to materials.