The C-RS Connection is a monthly e-newsletter providing information about upcoming events, membership announcements, new member introductions, volunteer profiles and more! 

C-RS Connection 

May 2020



Dear Friends, 

In early March, 2020, the C-RS implemented an online “Membership Referral Form”. To date, nineteen referrals have been received. Six of these have joined the C-RS. It is clear that the referral program can serve as a meaningful membership recruitment tool. It is important that even more members take advantage of it. For example, what if all current C-RS members submitted a referral. If only 10% joined that would be 119 new members. There is no limit on how many referrals a member can submit, the more the better.

To submit a prospective member referral using the online "Membership Referral Form", please follow these simple steps.

  1. From the C-RS website,, click on the “Get Involved option from the menu bar.
  2. Select “Membership Referral Form” from the drop-down menu.
  3. Complete the form that is displayed.
  4. Click the “Submit” button and you are done. The form will automatically be sent to the email address. A membership invitation packet will be sent by USPS to the prospective member. Your name will be included in the cover letter so the recipient knows who recommended them. Though the online method is easiest, other options are mailing the name and contact information of the prospective member to the C-RS Munhall address or calling 412-567-3077 and leaving a message. We follow up these referrals.

Membership is the life blood of the C-RS. Why not share your C-RS experience with family, friends, and neighbors? I look forward to receiving your referrals.

Take care,

Maryann Sivak, C-RS National President


Welcome to our newest C-RS members. The following list of names reflects new members who have joined (or have been reinstated) since April 15, 2020. Please review the list - you just might find someone you know. 

  • Nina Bagshaw - Pennsburg, PA
  • Lisa Bossart - Madison, OH
  • James Brendan - McDonald, PA
  • Emma Burd - Arlington, VA
  • Katherine Chrzanowski - Hollywood, FL
  • Anna Daniels - San Diego, CA
  • Robert Dudas - Pittsburgh, PA
  • Thomas Lacey - Endicott, NY
  • Maureen Haber - Pleasanton, CA
  • Fr Mark Hallahan - Los Angeles, CA
  • MaryAnn Hanich Flynn - Vienna, VA
  • Jane Hanich Otero - Reston, VA
  • Robert Jogan - Grosse Pointe Woods, MI
  • Nicholas Jubinski Jr - Port Orange, FL
  • Christina Kuhn - Newport News, VA
  • Sally Luttrell - Richardson, TX
  • Daniel Otero - Crestone, CO
  • Starik Pollock - Burnsville, MN
  • Eileen Potocnak Arnold - College Park, MD
  • Ralph Rack - Chincoteague, VA
  • Raymond Sarosy - Sun City Center, FL
  • Stephen Sayko - Jacksonville, NC
  • Myrtle Shott - West Covina, CA
  • Margaret Spirnak - Camp Hill, PA
  • Bruce Sukaly -  Fredericksburg, TX
  • Nicole Tanana - Olyphant, PA
  • Donna Thomas  - West Covina, CA
  • Elizabeth Vukovich - Vienna, VA

Again, we welcome these new members and look forward to a lasting relationship.  We hope they become involved by bringing their talents and skills to the C-RS.


The Anna Donson Memorial Scholarship will be offered once again in 2020 to an outstanding Rusyn student or any student enrolled in a Carpatho-Rusyn School, or who is a member of a Carpatho-Rusyn family, organization, society, or club that advances the Carpatho-Rusyn culture.

The aim of the scholarship is to assist students who themselves are members of the Carpatho-Rusyn Society, or who would advance the Carpatho-Rusyn culture, language, or tenets of the Carpatho-Rusyn Society. The purpose of this $1000.00 scholarship is to recognize and provide financial assistance to an outstanding student enrolled in a higher education program (2 or 4-year duration or graduate program) or any accredited institution that offers certified academic, professional, technical, or vocational training.

The scholarship wishes to encourage and highlight the excellent contributions that our Rusyn people are making to their communities and beyond. The scholarship also intends to accelerate the advancement of our young Carpatho Rusyn population, expanding the development of our C-R citizens, within their community and state through higher education, advanced learning, and professional academic or vocational work.

For more information, visit The deadline for applications is June 30, 2020.


The Carpatho-Rusyn Society Radio Heritage Program archives are now up and available for listening. The Carpatho-Rusyn Society has set up a new media page:

The purpose of this site is to post radio archives, videos, presentations, and other media items from the C-RS. Currently, only the radio program is available, but as we grow we will add more menu items and links.

To access the Carpatho-Rusyn Society Radio Heritage Program site, please go to: The radio program is hosted by Dean Poloka every Sunday from 2:30-3:00 pm Eastern Time and can be heard on AM 730 and FM 96.5 - WPIT in the Pittsburgh area. You can also listen online during broadcast time at the station's web page:

The Carpatho-Rusyn Society Radio Heritage Program will be sponsoring two special Easter broadcasts on Sunday April 12 and Sunday April 19. If you would like to sponsor one of these broadcasts in full or in part, please contact Dean Poloka at 412-877-9351 or email


Just a reminder to all chapter/branch leaders that a new feature is now available on the C-RS website. Upcoming event announcements can now be submitted online using the newly implemented "Event Announcement Submission Form". This form is restricted to chapter/branch leaders and board members only. To access this feature, go to the "Our Events" option on the C-RS website and select "Event Submission Form" from the drop-down menu.

Fill out the form with the event information and click the "Submit" button. The event form will automatically be sent to email address for review and approval. Once approved appropriate action will be taken to post the event on the C-RS website's event page and Facebook or any other media as necessary.


Just a reminder for all you genealogy researchers! The C-RS web site now has available a genealogy forum - be one of the first to visit! Get involved with other Rusyns and explore your common ancestral backgrounds, ask questions and answer questions. Relate exciting stories about a trip to the homeland! Maybe even find a cousin at the forum. This has been a much sought after dream of Sharon Jarrow and without Tom Brenzovich and his incredible IT wizardly it wouldn’t have happened!!! Get involved and post today!

Instructions for accessing the online Genealogy Forum:

  • From the C-RS website. home page, scroll down to the “Genealogy” icon (link) and click.
  • You will be directed to the “Genealogy” page, please read the term & conditions.
  • Scroll down to the “Join Genealogy Discussion Form” button at the bottom of the page and click.
  • You will be asked to log in with your email address and password, the discussion form and the recent forum update page will appear.
  • You have the option to either reply to an existing topic or create a new topic.
    • For new topics click on the “Topic” button and enter the subject and topic content (body). Note: To prevent spam you will be asked “I’m not a robot”, respond accordingly.
    • To reply to an existing post, click on the topic title from the list, and then click on the “Reply” button to enter your response.
  • Then click the “Post” button.

Attachments can be included as part of the reply or topic, i.e. pictures and/or documents. To insert an attachment:

  • Click on the “Choose files” button at the bottom of the page.
  • Select the file(s) to be attached. Up to 20 files can be uploaded. Each file should be less than 20 MB.
  • When complete, click on the “Post” button.


The Who are the Rusyns? DVD was released in 2019 for the 25th Anniversary of the Carpatho-Rusyn Society.

It is professionally presented by John Righetti explaining the complicated history of the Rusyn people. This “hard copy” should be in every Rusyn home simply because it will be referred to often and hopefully shared with others. One realizes how close the Rusyns were to becoming extinct and gives great hope for the future as we are now recognized as an ethnic minority by many countries.

The DVD can be purchased for $25, which includes postage and handling. Please include the name and address of the recipient and mail your check made payable to Carpatho-Rusyn Society to Bonnie Burke, 1101 Tanner Crossing Lane, Indian Land, SC 29707. 

Orders will be processed immediately upon receipt.


Saturday, June 14 - WEBINAR

Using DNA to Answer Real Research Questions

  • 2 - 4 pm
  • Parma Snow Library, 2121 Snow Road, Parma, OH
  • Presented by Gail Shaffer Blankenship

DNA tests provide opportunities for researchers to solve specific research questions. There will be a demonstration of how to combine DNA results with traditional research methods to make those fascinating DNA results useful.

Presented by  


Copyright © 2020 Carpatho-Rusyn Society. All rights reserved.
915 Dickson St.
Munhall, PA 15120
(412) 567-3077

The Carpatho-Rusyn Society (C-RS) is a national 501(C)(3) organization founded in Pittsburgh, PA in 1994. As stated in our mission statement, the C-RS is dedicated to manifesting Carpatho-Rusyn culture in the United States and supporting Rusyn culture in the homeland in east central Europe. Information about joining C-RS and a membership application may be obtained on the C-RS membership website at