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Last Updated: 27 September 2000 

The staff features geographers and political scientists with practical, governmental experience in boundary and sovereignty analysis. 

In Memorium


We mourn the loss of our friend and colleague, Bradford L. Thomas, 68, who died on 22 February 1999 at Inova Fairfax Hospital after a heart attack.  At the time of his death, Brad was teaching in the Geography and Regional Science Department, The George Washington University (Washington, DC), and consulting with us on international boundary and sovereignty issues.  He also lectured at George Mason University.  He was an internationally recognized expert on boundary and sovereignty issues, especially in the Middle East, Latin America, and the South China Sea.


Brad retired from the US Department of State in 1997, after 18 years of service.  From 1991 through 1997, Brad served as Chief of the Cartography and Boundary Analysis Division, Office of the Geographer and Global Issues.  He was responsible for coordinating international boundary representation in the Federal Government and was senior analyst in the Department for international boundary and sovereignty issues.  For six years, he represented the Department of State as its deputy on the Federal Geographic Data Committee, chairing its Subcommittee on International Boundaries and Sovereignty from 1994-96.  He was the Department's deputy member on the US Board on Geographic Names from 1987 to 1995 and Chaired the Board from 1993-1995.  Before joining the Boundary Analysis Division in 1986, Brad spent four and a half years as a geographic specialist in the Department's Office of the Coordinator for Maps and Publications, traveling throughout the world on map procurement missions.  In recognition of his Federal service, Brad was awarded the National Intelligence Certificate of Distinction in May 1996 and Department of State Meritorious Honor Awards in 1996 and 1992.  His federal service also included two years in the US Army.


Before joining the Department of State, Brad was director of the Cartographic Services Laboratory at the University of Maryland.  That position followed sixteen years on the faculty of the Geography Department at Kent State University.  He also taught at San Francisco State University and the University of Minnesota.


He received his BA in Geography at Washington University (St. Louis) in 1953 and a MA in Geography at the University of Kansas in 1958.


He was an active member of Vienna Presbyterian Church, sang in its choir, and taught English as a second language.  He was a member of the Association of American Geographers since 1958, and was particularly active in its Mid-Atlantic Division.  He was also a member of the Society of Sigma Xi.


Brad's survivors include his wife, Mindy; three children from his first marriage, Robin Thomas Johnson, Greg Thomas, and Amy Thomas; three stepsons, Nick Van Nelson, Richard Van Nelson, and Jim Van Nelson; and three grandchildren.


Remaining Associates

Daniel J. Dzurek 

Formerly Chief of the boundary analysis division in the Office of the Geographer, US Dept. of State and a fellow at the East-West Center (Honolulu). He assisted in negotiating the Russia-US maritime boundary and in preparing US submissions to the World Court in the Canada-US (Gulf of Maine) Case. He has published extensively on offshore boundary and island sovereignty disputes. 

Yakov Zinberg 

Lecturer in international relations at Kokushikan University, Tokyo, and North East Asia regional editor for Boundary and Security Bulletin (IBRU, University of Durham, UK). Formerly Research Associate at Hokkaido University's Slavic Research Center. He has published extensively on Japan's territorial issues, in English and Japanese. Born and raised in the Soviet Union, he is a US citizen and spends part of the year in Washington, DC.