Christus Award

The Christus Award is given annually to individuals in recognition of the contributions they have made to strengthen the bridge between the church and the university and/or who have made significant contributions to higher education in the ELCA.

Christus Award 2023

Miyoko Oshima 

Miyoko Oshima serves as the president of Vesper Society, a private operating foundation based in San Francisco.  Prior to becoming its president, she served on the Vesper board of directors for eleven years from 1999-2011. Vesper Society has deep roots in the Lutheran Church and has over time become more interfaith in its governance. California Lutheran University was a natural partner to explore this growing interfaith spirituality among its students.

Miyoko Oshima

Miyoko is an experienced nonprofit executive who uniquely combines a passion for social justice with building organizations and their programs. She is always on the lookout for leaders who have a sparkle in their eyes and want to change the world. Her curiosity about how the world works has led her to serve in a wide range of leadership roles. 

Miyoko was the chief operating officer at the Japanese American National Museum in Los Angeles during the Great Recession and brings a creative sensibility to her work. Her broad and deep nonprofit experience comes from her time as president of the Southern California Grantmakers in Los Angeles and director of projects at the Tides Foundation in San Francisco.

Miyoko earned her master’s degree from the Graduate Theological Union, Berkeley, CA. She is a lifetime student of theology and embodies a deep commitment to a leadership style that is based on values of service, integrity, and respect.

Recipients of the Christus Award

Past Recipients
2019 Linda Baumhefner & Rod Gilbert
2018 The Rev. Glen & Mrs. Lauri Egertson
2017 The Rev. Frank Nausin
2016 The Rev. Paul Evenson
2015 Jerry Slattum
2014 Jack Wise
2013 Jim and Sue Swenson
2012 Dr. Jerry Miller
2011 The Rev. Dr. Paul Egertson
2010 Mr. Marvin Soiland
2009 The Rev. Dr. Howie Wennes
2008 Mrs. Beverly Anderson
2007 The Rev. Lauren "Bud" Egdahl
2006 The Rev. Dr. Luther Olmon
2005 Dr. Louise Evenson & Karsten Lundring
2004 Mr. Norman Lueck
2003 The Rev. Gerry Swanson and Dr. Jan Bowman
2002 The Rev. John Embree
2001 Mr. Bob Samuelson
2000 The Rev. Paul Nakamura/Aina Abrahamson
1999 The Rev. Quentin Garman
1998 Dr. Ray & Mrs. Helen Olson
1997 The Rev. Erling & Dr. Marge Wold
1996 Rev. Dr. Gaylerd Mercer & Mrs. Joan Falde
1995 The Rev. Carl & Mrs. Ruth Segerhammar
1994 The Rev. James Bessey
1993 Mr. Gaylord Mercer
1992 Ms. Diane Nelson