Murray Feshbach, formerly of The Kennedy Institute, expert Soviet demographer, dies at 90

Murray Feshbach
Murray Feshbach (C-SPAN).

We are sad to share that Murray Feshbach, formerly of The Kennedy Institute’s then-Center for Population Research, died October 25, 2019. He was 90. 

Dr. Feshbach joined Georgetown University in 1981 after a successful career with the U.S. Census Bureau, retiring as the Chief of the Soviet Branch of the Foreign Demographic Division. He was an expert on the demography of the Soviet Union and its health care crises, and researched Soviet medical ethics. 

“His knowledge of demography, and in particular, Russia, was legendary,” said Doris Goldstein, Founding Director of the Bioethics Research Library. “Well before the emergence of widely-accessible digital documents he had an office piled high with print sources and the ‘search engine’ was Murray himself.” 

The Kennedy Institute’s Center for Population Research later became a part of Georgetown University’s Department of Demography. After Dr. Feshbach’s retirement from Georgetown in 2000, he became a Professor Emeritus in the Center for Eurasian, Russian and East European Studies (CERES) and Research Professor in the Department of Demography. His impact on the Georgetown community cannot be understated.

Dr. Feshbach was born in New York in 1929. He received a B.A. in history from Syracuse University, an M.A. in European diplomatic history from Columbia University, and a Ph.D. in economics from American University. 

He was the father of Rabbi Michael Feshbach (Julie Novick) and David Feshbach (Sylvia Resler), and grandfather of Benjamin, Daniel, Talia and Liora Feshbach.