BLITZ INFORMATION SERVICES, St. Petersburg Russia and San Rafael, California
The Blitz Information Services (formerly known as Russian Baltic Information Center ) was founded in 1992 shortly after the fall of the Soviet Union. Initially formed as a Russian American Joint Venture, Blitz published numerous scholarly books and archival finding aids as well as provided research services in the historic archives. Prior to 1992 the Archives of the Soviet Union were very difficult if not impossible to access. This lack of access essentially precluded any genealogy research.
Now in its second decade, Blitz has performed genealogy searches and archival research for numerous clients around the world. Blitz can access local and regional archives in Russia and the former Soviet Union including, the Navy archives in St. Petersburg, other military archives in Moscow as well as archives of the former KGB. By forging relationships with archivists throughout the former Soviet Union as well as government officials and other professionals, Blitz is able to offer clients valuable research and information retrieval services.
Blitz maintains an office are in St. Petersburg, Russia and in California. Elena Tsvetkova and Natasha Efimova manage the St. Petersburg office, which handles all client research, prepares reports and responds to inquiries. The California office, managed by Kristin Nute handles payments and client communications as necessary. The California office of Blitz allows clients to pay for research works in US dollars by usual payment methods such as US check, Visa, MasterCard, bank wire or money order).
Blitz has been successful in researching family histories for a number of enthnic groups of the former Soviet Union including Russian, Ukranian, Jewish, Polish and Germans in Russia, Georgians and others. In some cases, information found has been extensive, and has included coats of arms, complete service lists for individuals in government and military service, previously secret KGB files, applications by Poles requesting qualification under the Russian Nobility system, maps of villages showing individual houses with family names of the occupants, newspaper articles, photographs, etc.
Clients include academic researchers, authors, historians, genealogists etc. In some cases, by a clients request, Ms. Tsvetkova has been able to locate and contact a clients' long lost relatives by placing and ad in a local newspaper. Blitz also provides in-country assistance such as interpreting, client meeting coordinating and travel organization. Blitz has traveled to villages per client requests to photograph and document ancestral sites.
Elena Tsvetkova is the owner and manager of BLITZ Information Services located in St. Petersburg, Russia. In 1992, Ms. Tsvetkova left her position as researcher at the St.Petersburg Polytechnic University and became one of the founders of the Russian-American company "Russian Baltic Information Center-BLITZ". Ms. Tsvetkova is fluent in Russian, French and English.
Natasha Efimova is fluent in Russian and English and has been with Blitz for 11 years. Her major is in English from St. Petersburg University. Ms. Efimova manages translations and much of the email communications.
Kristin Nute holds a BA in International Relations with a minor in Eastern European studies from Lewis & Clark College in Portland, Oregon. Ms. Nute studied Russian and has studied and traveled in Russia.