Year: 2021

Patricia J. Higgins

Patricia J. Higgins is a University Distinguished Professor of Anthropology, Emerita, at SUNY Plattsburgh. Her UC Berkeley Ph.D. was based, in part, on research she conducted on education and socialization in elementary schools Tehran, Iran, from 1969 to 1971; she carried out further research on Iranian education as a Fulbright Lecturer at Tehran University in …

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Pouneh Shabani-Jadidi

Pouneh Shabani-Jadid won the 2021 Persian Translation Prize for her translation of Iraj Pezeshkzad’s Hafez in Love. Formerly a Senior Faculty Lecturer of Persian Language and Linguistics at McGill University’s Institute of Islamic Studies, Pouneh Shabani-Jadidi is currently an Instructional Professor of Persian in the University of Chicago’s Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations. …

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Dr. Devi Sridhar

Dr. Devi Sridhar spoke on the topic, “Preventing the Next Pandemic: What have we learned about international health collaboration and what needs to change?” In this lecture, Dr. Sridhar examined the historical roots of international collaboration in health and the subsequent creation of the World Health Organization in the aftermath of World War II. Yet, …

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Lexi Lobdell

Lexi is pursuing a Master’s of Science degree in International Business and Entrepreneurship at the University of Lappeenranta. She plans to use the Roth-Thomson Award to support her sociological research on the ways in which globalization of the pharmaceutical business could optimize the innovation of drugs and reduce cost for the consumer. Upon her return …

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Cheyenne Jansdatter

Cheyenne Jansdatter, the Archival Collections Manager of the Museum of Danish America in Elk Horn, Iowa, will work to develop the Danish American Archival Networking Experience (DAANE), an online digital archive that will connect three Danish American archives in the U.S and several institutions in Denmark with archival holdings that are relevant to the Danish …

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Clint Bruce

Clint Bruce holds the Canada Research Chair in Acadian and Transnational Studies (CRÉAcT), is Director of the Observatoire Nord/Sud and assistant professor in the Department of Humanities at Université Sainte-Anne in Nova Scotia. He is also a research associate at the Center for Louisiana Studies at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette and at the …

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Joel Scott

Joel Scott is a poet and translator from Sydney, Australia, currently a resident in Berlin. He translates from German and Spanish into English. He has a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature and Translation Studies from Macquarie University. He is currently working on translating the third volume of Peter Weiss’s magnum opus Die Ästhetik des Widerstands which …

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Elina Akhtiyarova

Elina excels in shaping 12+ exchange programs from inception to program and into ongoing relationships to the benefit of Kazakhstan and the U.S. When COVID canceled the in-person event for the International Visitor Leadership Program’s 80th anniversary, Elina conceptualized, implemented, and moderated a Facebook Live program with Washington and Embassy officials and over 120 guests …

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Dr. Gözde Doğan Yalçıner

Gözde’s Honorable Mention is for the bilateral Cultural Property Agreement (CPA) signed this year. Gözde created partnerships linking the Turkish government, NGOs, and arts institutions, resulting in a CPA that curbs smuggling, denies revenue to terrorist organizations, and protects cultural heritage. Gödze’s work is on the leading edge of a renewed emphasis on protecting cultural …

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Elena Broszkowski

For a dozen years, Elena Broszkowski, Cultural Affairs Specialist at U.S. Embassy in Caracas, Venezuela, managed the Performing and Visual Arts Portfolio, comprising ECA cultural arts programs and nominations, and post-funded social transformation-through-the-arts programs incorporating exchanges alumni, Binational Centers, public and private universities, municipalities led by opposition party members, and many other Post allies. Using …

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Fatma Souidi

Throughout her 22-year career, Fatma Souidi brought Algerians and Americans together – in spite of a civil war, a revolution, economic crisis, and a pandemic. Fatma engineered the region’s first Memorandum of Understanding on Cultural Property which led to updated cultural preservation legislation and training focused on preventing looting of cultural property. Her work in …

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Vanessa Wagner

For nearly two decades, Vanessa has led the entire range of cultural programming. Most notably, she secured $2.5 million to conserve dozens of heritage sites and led U.S. repatriation of some 2,000 artifacts to Peru, raising the profile of the Mission throughout Peru. Vanessa’s humanity, care for contacts and workmates, advocacy for U.S. interests and …

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Toni Bowser, Director of IT at ECA, wins the Lois Roth Foundation’s 2021 Ilchman-Richardson Award

Antoinette Bowser

The 2021 Ilchman-Richardson Award went to Ms. Antoinette (Toni) Bowser, Director of Information Technology (IT) at the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA).Toni’s vision and tenacity have made ECA’s mission possible, especially during the pandemic shift to telework and virtual-programming, supporting posts, partners and participants. Her principled leadership resulted in Vision21, a multi-year project …

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Charlotte Titus

An Honorable Mention was also awarded to the Branch Chief of Europe/Eurasia Branch (IVLP Division) at the Office of International Visitors, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, Charlotte Titus. Over 30 years Charlotte improved program efficiency and the work environment for her colleagues. She led a steering committee of international security professionals and their U.S. …

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William Couch

The 2021 Lois Roth Award went to Public Affairs Officer William Couch from the U.S. Embassy in Helsinki, Finland. Bill skillfully used a range of cultural diplomacy tools, over two years, to reverse Finnish opposition to repatriating the remains of 20 Indigenous People and their funerary objects for reburial in Mesa Verde National Park. Bill …

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Raisa Dukas wins 2021 Lois Roth Award Honorable Mention

Raisa Dukas

An Honorable Mention was also awarded to Cultural Affairs Officer Raisa Dukas from the U.S. Embassy in Beirut, Lebanon. Raisa’s incredible support to her peers, subordinates, and interlocutors, her mentoring and creation of a new, but now permanent, regional Community of Practice for PD practitioners, and her creative programming and broad strategic outreach plan that …

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Jonanthan Wright

An honorable mention was awarded to Jonathan Wright for his translation from the Arabic of Sinan Antoon’s fourth novel, The Book of Collateral Damage. The novel follows Nameer, an Iraqi scholar studying in the United States, as he attempts to document and come to terms with the devastating aftermath of the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq. Based on Antoon’s own …

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Hannah Ritchey

Hannah Ritchey is conducting research on Muslim immigration and integration in Sweden. She will use the Roth-Thomson Award for translation and interpretation services and travel to conduct interviews. She plans to pursue a career advising non-governmental organizations on how to care for migrants and assist their acclimation to their new community, while celebrating their history …

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Michelle Chang

This year, the award went to Michelle Chang. Michelle is conducting research on Norwegian mindsets about death in collaboration with the University of Bergen’s Center for Crisis Psychology to support the Center’s work with the organizations it serves. She will use the Project Support Award to conduct and then analyze information obtained from community focus …

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Robert Chandler & Elizabeth Chandler

The 2020 award went to Robert and Elizabeth Chandler for their translation from the Russian of Vasily Grossman’s Stalingrad. Set in Russia in the midst of WWII, the novel follows the Shaposhnikov family as they grapple with the nearing German invasion, providing an intimate portrait of humanity in the face of disaster. According to the Modern Language Association, “Robert …

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Virlana Tkacz & Wanda Phipps

Virlana Tkacz and Wanda Phipps received an honorable mention for their translation from the Ukranian of Serhiy Zhadan’s What We Live For, What We Die For: Selected Poems by Serhiy Zhadan. The collection includes selected works detailing the haunting realities of life in war-torn Ukraine from seven of Zhadan’s previous publications, released between 2001 and 2015. According to Dzvinia …

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