Each year, the Connie Jill Carlstrom Endowed Award in Japanese Studies is presented to a promising student of Japanese language and culture who shows great interest in pursuing a career or graduate studies in some aspect of relations between Japan and the United States. Candidates must have achieved junior status and have studied Japanese for at least one academic year at the college level. The award recipient will be selected by a committee of three members of the teaching faculty selected by the Dean of the Faculty.

The award was established in 1993 by the Carlstrom family to honor Jill Carlstrom who died suddenly in the town of Tamamura, Japan, on September 6, 1993. She had just begun teaching in the Japan Exchange Program that is sponsored by the Japanese Ministry of Education. After graduating as an English major, with a minor in Japanese language and literature, in May, 1993, Jill went to Japan in late July to begin preparing for her assignment as an Assistant Language Teacher in two junior high schools.

On the Whitman campus, Jill was an active member of the Delta Delta Delta sorority. She studied Japanese for four years at Whitman College and served in her senior year as the Resident Assistant of the Tekisuijuku, the Japanese language interest house on campus. According to Professor Takemoto, "Jill was a vital and important part of the Japanese program. Her sensitivity and love of languages enabled her not only to understand and speak Japanese, but to interpret Japanese culture for those who knew nothing about it. She had the potential to be the perfect bridge between the two cultures."

Recipients

2015 Madison Munn and Jessica Van Horne

Chris Ponce, Connie Carlstrom, Madison Munn, Jessica Van Horne, Roger Carlstrom, Chuck Cleveland, and Pat Spencer

Left to Right: Chris Ponce (Associate Vice President for Development), Connie Carlstrom, Madison Munn, Jessica Van Horne, Roger Carlstrom, Chuck Cleveland (Dean of Students), and Pat Spencer (Interim Provost and Dean of Faculty).

2014 Megan Murayama

Professor Brian Dott, President George Bridges, Megan Murayama, Connie and Roger Carlstrom, Professor Chuck Cleveland, and Professor Tim Kaufman-Osborne<

Roger and Connie Carlstrom congratulate the 2014 Award winner, Megan Murayama with (l-r), Professor Brian Dott, President George Bridges, Megan, Connie and Roger Carlstrom, Professor Chuck Cleveland (Dean of Students), and Professor Tim Kaufman-Osborne (Provost and Dean of Faculty)

2013 Elizabeth Lee, Karin Tompkins, Spencer Wharton

2012 Christina Tamaru

President George Bridges, Ron Takemoto, Professor Tim Kaufman-Osborne, Christina Tamaru, Connie and Roger Carlstrom, and Professor Chuck Cleveland.

Roger and Connie Carlstrom congratulate the 2012 Award winner, Christina Tamaru. Left to right: President George Bridges, Ron Takemoto, Professor Tim Kaufman-Osborne (Provost and Dean of Faculty), Christina, Connie and Roger Carlstrom, and Professor Chuck Cleveland (Dean of Students).

Christina Tamaru with past award winners: Lisa Dodobara Griffith (2003), Kendall Shibuya (2010), Connie and Roger Carlstrom, and Seanacey Pierce (2007).

Christina Tamaru, the 2012 award winner is surrounded by past Carlstrom Award Winners, Lisa Dodobara Griffith (2003), Kendall Shibuya (2010), Connie and Roger Carlstrom, and Seanacey Pierce (2007).

Jennifer Mouat presents certificate to Chiyo Yamamoto

Jennifer Mouat, Director of the Language Learning Center, presents a certificate to Chiyo Yamamoto for her service as the Japanese Language Assistant. 2010-2011 and 2011-2012. 

Chiyo Yamamoto with certificate

2011 Raisa Stebbins

Professor Tim Kaufman-Osborne, President George Bridges, Raisa Stebbins, Connie and Roger Carlstrom, Ron Takemoto, and Professor Chuck Cleveland.

Roger and Connie Carlstrom congratulate the 2012 Award winner, Raisa Stebbins with (l-r), Professor Tim Kaufman-Osborne (Provost and Dean of Faculty), President George Bridges, Raisa, Connie and Roger Carlstrom, Takemoto, and Professor Chuck Cleveland (Dean of Students).

2010 Kendall Shibuya

Kendall Shibuya, the Carlstroms, and Whitman faculty and staff

Kendall Shibuya with (from left to right) Professor Chuck Cleveland, Dean of Students, Roger Carlstrom, Kendall, Connie Carlstrom, President George Bridges, and Professor Tim Kaufman-Osborn, Dean of Faculty. Roger Carlstrom announced that he would make a special donation to the Carlstrom fund to thank Professor Cleveland for attending the awards ceremony every since since the first award in May 1994.

Kendall, the Carlstroms, and Professor Takemoto

Kendall Shibuya, the 2010 Carlstrom Award Winner in Japanese Studies, stands with Mr. and Mrs. Carlstrom and Professor Takemoto at the new Olin East Tea room and classroom on May 13, 2010.

2009 Jason T. Shon

Jason Shon with the Carlstroms and Professor Takemoto

Jason Shon, winner of the 2009 Carlstrom Award in Japanese Studies, stands with Mr. Roger Carlstrom, Professor Takemoto, and Mrs. Connie Carlstrom at Tekisuijuku on Monday, May 4th, 2009.

Kevin Kato, Kyle Pereira, Jessica Martinez, Jill Morita, Reese Ismael, David Thylur, and Jason Shon

Asian Studies Seniors are recognized at the Carlstrom Award Ceremony. Kevin Kato, Kyle Pereira, Jessica Martinez, Jill Morita, Reese Ismael, David Thylur, and Jason Shon.

Jason, George Bridges, Lori Bettison-Varga, and Chuck Cleveland

Jason with President George Bridges, Dean of Faculty Lori Bettison-Varga, and Dean of Students Chuck Cleveland on May 4th, 2009.

2008 Chadwick Frisk

Chad Frisk

Chad Frisk, May, 2008.

The Carlstroms with Chad Fisk

Roger and Connie Carlstrom congratulate Chad Frisk, 2008 winner of the Carlstrom Award in Japanese Studies. Chad currently teaches English on the JET program.

Chad Frisk with Lori Bettison Varga, Johnson-sensei, Connie Carlstrom, Roger Carlstrom, Takemoto-sensei, Chuck Cleaveland, and Brian Dott

2008 Carlstrom Award to Chad Frisk congratulated by Dean of Faculty, Lori Bettison Varga, Johnson-sensei, Connie Carlstrom, Roger Carlstrom, Takemoto-sensei, Dean of Students Chuck Cleaveland, and Prof. Brian Dott.

2007 Seanacey Pierce

Seanacey Pierce with the Carlstroms

Seanacey Pierce wins the 2007 Carlstrom Award for Japanese Studies.

Seanacey Pierce with members of the TEK

Seanacey Pierce with members of the TEK: Jessica Martinez, Jason Shon, Matt Magnuson, David Thylur, David Fernandez, Seanacey Pierce, and Adachi Kojiro (native speaker).

2006 Kerry Shannon

Takemoto-Sensei, Connie Carlstrom, Kerry  Shannon, Roger Carlstrom

Left to right: Takemoto-Sensei, Connie Carlstrom, Kerry Shannon, Roger Carlstrom.

Kerry Shannon

Kerry Shannon, 2006 Carlstrom Award recipient

Whitman News Release

2005 Lisa Johnson

Lisa Johnson with the Carlstroms

Lisa Johnson, 2005 Carlstrom Award recipient, with Roger and Connie Carlstrom.

Whitman News Release

2004 Torrin Shimono

2003 Lisa Dodobara

2002 Sarah Neeri

2001 Wren McNally

2000 Maja Rose Palmer

1999 Erin Kusunoki

1998 Christopher Wiggins

1997 Marise Chan

1996 Brian Bergstrom

1995 Heather Lauerman

1995 Lindsey Rindflesh

1994 Rose Spidell