Andrew Blane, Emeritus Professor of Russian History at the City University of New York, was born in San Salvador and grew up in Kentucky, USA. He completed his undergraduate studies at the Southern Baptist Seminary in Louisville, graduate studies at the University of Cambridge, and completed his doctoral dissertation at Duke University. He has also attended courses at Harvard and Leningrad Universities. He taught at Grinnell College, Iowa, Smith College, Massachusetts, and finally at the City University of New York, from where he retired. His research interests, beyond the field of Russian History, extend to Russian religion, culture and intellectuals, and the history of civilization. Professor Vlane has been a member of Amnesty International since 1969. In 1974 he became the first American to be elected to the nine-member International Executive Committee of Amnesty International, while in the period 1979-1981 he served as president of this committee. He was one of nine Amnesty International officials who traveled to Stockholm in 1977 to receive the Nobel Peace Prize on behalf of Amnesty International. He has published five books, numerous studies on Soviet culture and on religion in the states of the Soviet regime, and articles on Amnesty International.