About the Montgomery Dickson Center

In the fall of 2011, the Japan Foundation Center for Global Partnership announced the launch of the JET Memorial Project to commemorate Alaskan JET Program participant Montgomery Dickson, who graduated from the University of Alaska Anchorage and taught elementary and junior high school English in Rikuzentakata City, Iwate Prefecture, Japan. The Japan Foundation Center for Global Partnership will support various activities at Monty's alma mater, the University of Alaska Anchorage, for 5 years with the intent to enhance future generation’s understanding of Japan. The Montgomery Dickson Center for Japanese Language and Culture was established to commemorate Montgomery "Monty" Dickson, who perished in the March 11, 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami in Japan. After graduating from UAA in May 2009 with a B.A. in Japanese, Monty participated in the Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Program and taught English in Rikuzentakata City, Iwate Prefecture, Japan. Monty cherished Japanese culture, and it was his dream to be a bridge over the Pacific Ocean to connect his homeland and Japan. On the morning of March 11, Monty translated words by an internationally known Japanese author, Ryotaro Shiba, into English, "There's nothing as beautiful as dedicating one's life for a cause."

The Dickson Center is located within the College of Arts and Sciences at UAA. Management of the Center is run by a director and coordinator position, advised by a community advisory board, and assisted by a steering committee comprised of UAA and public members including:

  • Tanya Carlson: Director of Partnerships & Travel Trade, Alaska Travel Industry Association [Advisory Board Vice President]
  • Dr. Paul Dunscomb, Professor, Department of History, University of Alaska Anchorage
  • Shannon Kuhn, MPH, Fellow, CDC Center for Global Health
  • Brandon Locke: Director, World Languages and Immersion Programs, Anchorage School District [Advisory Board President]
  • Hannah Schlosstein, Asia Marketing Coordinator, Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute 
  • Chuck Parker: Assistant Chief Pilot and B747 Captain, UPS Airlines
  • Greg Wolf: World Trade Center Anchorage