2009 Scholarship Recipients


Jeremy Bolton (Spokane) Eastern Washington University This four-year scholarship recipient has worked at Thinking Cap Communications and Design for the past three years, so it should come as no surprise that he will graduate next June with a BA in Visual Communication Design. Jeremy will be the first person in his family to complete a college degree. (Photo not available)
 
Lorenzo Cervantes (Tacoma) Pierce College. Lorenzo grew up in rural New Mexico. Lorenzo is proud that he is the first member of his family to graduate from high school and attend college. But college has been both an accomplishment and a challenge for Lorenzo. It was during his first year that he came out and faced rejection from his family as a result. Now back in school after taking a few years off, Lorenzo is majoring in graphic design and works as an HIV prevention counselor.
 
Christopher Chase (Puyallup) Western Washington University. This fall, Christopher will begin his journey to fulfill his life-long passion of becoming a psychiatrist. Living as an openly gay Asian American has given Chris insight into the struggles so many others face if they are not part of the mainstream culture. Christopher wants to have a positive impact on those he works with and believes his own experiences and insights will help him to become a better psychiatrist.
 
Karsen Farmer (Seattle) Evergreen High School - Class of 2009. Karsen will begin college in the fall, pursuing a degree in psychology. He's a high achiever, having been student body president, a varsity athlete and gifted academic student as well as president of his school's Gay Straight Student Alliance.
 
Ian Feis (Mount Vernon) Lewis and Clark College.A second year GSBA Scholarship recipient, Ian is majoring in psychology and gender studies with the goal of entering graduate school to complete a degree in family therapy. The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) named Ian Washington Youth Activist of the Year (2008).
 
Melissa Garrison (Normandy Park) University of Washington.Melissa is majoring in sociology and English with a minor in diversity. She is president of the Queer Straight Student Alliance, an Honors Program Peer Mentor and a member of the Mortar Board and Golden Key Honor societies. Melissa is keen on community service, volunteering for a number of organizations including Lifelong AIDS Alliance.
 
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Jackson Hogan (Pullman) Washington State University. In response to a series of anti-transgender and gender queer hate crimes against fellow Washington State University students, Jackson stepped forward and was interviewed by the media. As a result, students from around the country began speaking up about similar experiences. Jackson is majoring in women's studies with a minor in Spanish. (Photo not available)
 
Nathan Hoston (Lynnwood) Seattle University. Nathan is a self-proclaimed political junkie. A freshman in the fall, his political passion will propel him into law school and finally into a chosen career in politics. Nathan already has experience in this arena, having represented the Planned Parenthood Teen Council at Lobby Day this year in Olympia.
 
Kenneth Hughlett (Tacoma) University of Phoenix. Kenneth's ultimate goal is to start his own practice as a mental health therapist. He is committed to working with the LGBT community and helping people to better understand their lives and where they fit into the world. Working with Rose House, he facilitates a program assisting those with mental illnesses to reach their life goals.
 
Tamika Jackson (Seattle) Seattle Community College. Tamika plans to transfer to Columbia University as a junior to complete her major in psychology. Her passion is social advocacy and she has served as a domestic victim's advocate for the King County Prosecuting Attorney's Office and works in community outreach for HIV/AIDS prevention. She will continue her work to alleviate injustice, poverty, bigotry and racism as a community activist.
 
Casey Katims (Edmonds) Vassar College. This senior is majoring in Political Science with a special focus on American LGBT civil rights policy. This summer, Casey will intern for U.S. Representative Jay Inslee. He will intern for U.S. Representative Jay Inslee. He has also participated in Georgetown University's "Semester in Washington" and interned at the Human Rights Campaign (HRC).
 
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Jenny Kinder (Yakima) Seattle University. Jenny, a four-year GSBA scholar, founded the Gay Straight Student Alliance at her high school and continues her activist work in various community agencies in Seattle. She wants to pursue a career as a community health clinical psychologist, working to bridge the gap between LGBT youth, school and the community.
 
Sigifredo Mora (Spokane) Freddy is a first-generation Mexican American, majoring in business management this fall. He will be the first person in his family to attend college. Freddy's long-term goals are to own his own business and become a state senator so that he can give back, not only to the LGBT community but to the members of his family still living in Mexico.
 
Jake K.M. Paikai (Tacoma) Pacific Lutheran University.Jake is an avid reader of poetry and prose and dreams of one day abandoning everything to move to the coast to write the last great American novel. Currently, he is earning a double major in English Literature and in German. He works as a diversity advocate and for the university's premier literary magazine.
 
Josee Perez (Bothell) Evergreen College. Josee is studying to become a social worker so that she can devote the rest of her life working with refugees. Once a refugee herself, she currently works with Iraqi and Sudanese immigrants and exiles while attending college. Josee is a second year GSBA scholar with two daughters - one identifying as bisexual and the other as queer.
 
Kyle Rapinan (Seattle) University of Washington.Kyle is a second year GSBA Scholarship recipient. He plans to major in law and societies and justice before entering law school. Kyle is the new co-chair of the Safe Schools Coalition. He also volunteers at Lambert House and with other LGBT organizations.
 
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Emma Shull (Seattle). Emma is the daughter of two lesbians and is proud to be an ally of the LGBT community. An advocate of social justice, Emma is in Guatemala working with Global Visionaries, a program teaching social justice and environmental conservation. She will continue her studies at Long Island University's Global College. (Photo not available)
 
Sergey Smirnov (Seattle) University of Washington. Sergey just completed his AA degree at Bellevue Community College and will pursue a career in nonprofit management and philanthropy. At Bellevue CommunityCollege, he served in student government and created the LGBTQ and Allies Resource Center - the first fully funded program of its kind at a two-year college in Washington state.
 
Landon Tan (Seattle) University of Washington. Landon is committed to social justice, his community, and to the people he loves. By pursuing a degree in Social Work and continuing his work in organizations like the American Friends Service Committee, he endeavors to create progress through solidarity and accountability between groups, both within the queer community and beyond it. In the near future, Landon plans to clear space at UW for transgender and Mixed-race students like himself.
 
Eddie Um (Seattle) University of Washington. While growing up in South Korea, Eddie helped his parents maintain their struggling business, which inspired his move to Seattle in pursuit of the American dream. After facing homophobia, Eddie decided to start the GLBT and Allies Out for Business organization, providing support and networking within the business community. He is a determined leader majoring in business.
 
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BRANDON FONTAINE NEWTON LAW SCHOLAR

James Newton, Attorney-At –Law, has made a four year commitment of $10,000 per year to be awarded to an applicant studying law.

Jessica Warmbo (Port Orchard) University of Washington. Jessica Warmbo is a two-year GSBA Scholarship recipient. Jessica entered college as an intended political science major, but has since decided to apply her skills and personal experiences with public agencies to help other youth by pursuing a degree in social work. Jessica wants to use this degree to help advance the community atmosphere for LGBTQ individuals and most especially help children who are in unsuitable living conditions.
 
 

RICHARD C. ROLFS SCHOLARS

A $200,000 bequest from Richard Rolfs created an endowment in his memory in 1998. Rolfs, a native of Wenatchee and a graduate of Washington State University, was a gay community activist for more than twenty years. The Rolfs Awards target students from eastern Washington, rural towns, and outstanding community activists.

Emily Juhre (Greenacres) Central Valley High School - Class of 2009. Emily plans to attend the University of Washington in the fall where she is thinking about majoring in political science, social work or law. Whatever her academic focus, Emily is committed to working in the LGBT community. She broke gender barriers in high school by being a member of a boys wrestling team and placed at the girls' varsity state championships. Emily received a Chase Youth Award for diversity this year.
 
Carlos Ramirez (Pasco) University of Washington.) Carlos plans to attend the University of Washington next year where he will major in psychology. This will be the first step toward realizing his 12-year dream of opening a nonprofit center to help homeless gay youth infected with HIV/AIDS. At age 10, Carlos was sole caretaker in his family for an uncle living with AIDS and he continues to actively volunteer in the community.
 

THANK YOU TO OUR 2009 SCHOLARSHIP PARTNER

Safeco Foundation


PHOTOS: Perez photo by Scott Aitken for TPNW © 2008. All other photos by Barry Peterson for TPNW © 2009.

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