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ABOUT THE WRITER/PHOTOGRAPHER

Journalist/historian Gordon F. Sander is one of the leading authorities on Finland and the Baltic region in the English language.

He first visited Finland in 1977, when he reported his first story, the hijacking of a Soviet airliner to Helsinki, an episode which features in Off The Map: A Personal History.  

Sander’s first book about Finland Taistelu Suomesta, about the 1939-40 Winter War, was published by WSOY in 2010, and was the number 2 best selling non-fiction book for six months.  Taistelu, which many consider the standard one volume history of the war, was published in English in 2013 by the University Press of Kansas as The Hundred Day Winter War.  It also has since been published in Estonian and Russian editions.

Off The Map was published by Gummerus in 2012, in both Finnish (Usein unohdettu Suomi) and English editions.

In addition to his books, Sander has published articles and essays about Finland and the Baltic region in over twenty American, British, Finnish, Swedish, Estonian and Latvian newspapers, news sites, and publications, including The New York Times, Financial Times, Christian Science Monitor, Politico, International Herald Tribune, Wilson Quarterly, The Sunday Times, The Independent, The Chronicle of Higher Education, Times Higher Education Supplement, Sierra, Imagine, Blue Wings, Scanorama, Baltic Times and others.

Sander is currently at work on Citizen Kekkonen: The Life and Times of Urho Kekkonen, an historical biography of Urho Kekkonen, the long-time president of Finland (1956-1981) which will be published by WSOY in 2019. 

Sander is also a professional photographer.  He has mounted numerous exhibits of his work in Finland and in Finnish diplomatic facilities, including “My Nordica,” an exhibit of his images of Finland and Sweden, at the Finnish Consulate General in New York (1994), “My America,”  a retrospective of his American photography at Taidehalle, the Municipal Art Hall (1998), and “Portraits de la Femme,” a gallery show of his portraits of women from Finland and around the Baltic region (2008).   Some of these images are included in Off The Map. 

In September, 2017 Sander was made a knight of the Order of the Lion of Finland by President Sauli Niinisto in recognition of his services to Finland as journalist, historian and photographer, one  of the handful of American artists and scholars who have been so honored.