Outstanding Young Alumni Award
Established in 2018, the Canterbury School Outstanding Young Alumni Award honors an alumnus/a who graduated within the last twenty-five years, who has made significant contributions to civic organizations and/or a chosen profession, whose life is characterized by creativity, curiosity and community service, and who reflects the highest ideals of Canterbury School.
2019 - Nichol Whiteman ’94
With a relentless dedication to improving the lives of others, Nichol Whiteman is the Chief Executive Officer of the Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation (LADF) where she leads the team’s official charity – an award-winning leader in sports-based youth development. Under her leadership, LADF launched Dodgers RBI (Reviving Baseball in Inner Cities), a youth development program serving over 10,000 youth today. As part of its commitment to Southern California communities, the Foundation completed its 50th Dodgers Dreamfield, created a benefit gala, and increased fundraising by 1,000% with Nichol at the helm.
With a degree in Economics from Spelman College, Nichol was the first in her family to graduate from college and has a passion for education, equity, and diversity. Her unwavering dedication resulted in positions in investment management and publishing before beginning a philanthropic career as VP, Western Region of the Jackie Robinson Foundation. As a child of Jamaican immigrants “in search of a dream," she frequently highlights the power of diversity in advocating for resources and opportunities for marginalized populations.
As an African American woman in Major League Baseball, Nichol understands the importance of access. She uses her resources to open doors and opportunities for youth regardless of their roots. In addition to her professional achievements, she mentors countless men and women who she meets in the community.
The New York native has been recognized throughout the industry for her exceptional contributions having earned the 2018 Sports Business Journal Game Changers Award, Anti-Defamation League's 2018 Deborah Award, Ebony Magazine's 2017 Woman Up Award, and The Pink Tea Rose Foundation's 2017 Progressive Leadership Award to name a few. In 2010, Nichol received the Woman of Inspiration Award presented by The Wave. She was also honored by the National Urban League Young Professionals of Los Angeles and the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority for her philanthropic and professional endeavors.
A former member of the Executive Leadership Team for the American Heart Association's Go Red Campaign, she also serves on the Women’s Leadership Council and is a member of Women in Sports and Entertainment and LA Community Leaders. Nichol holds positions on the advisory and regional boards of Covington Capital Management, A Better Chance, Inc., New Teacher Center, Davinci Schools, the Los Angeles County Office of Education and the Positive Results Corporation. Additionally, she sits on the board of the Los Angeles chapter of Positive Coaching Alliance.
At Canterbury's 1994 Commencement, Nichol received The Edward F. Mack Award for Outstanding Contributions to the TABARD and The Hubert McDonnell Award for Excellence in the Study of Theology.
2018 - Lilly Bertz O’Connor ’03
A Connecticut native, Lilly Bertz graduated from Canterbury School in 2003. Her career has focused extensively on public service across the U.S. government.
Lilly currently advises on strategic communications for the Department of Defense’s health enterprise. Her work builds off previous experience with the Department of Defense’s U.S. Southern Command, where she led on strategic planning and communications for global health collaboration with partner nation military and civilian institutions across South America and the Caribbean.
Prior to her work with the Department of Defense, Lilly served as a Foreign Affairs Officer at the Department of State. Most recently, Lilly was a Special Assistant to the Deputy Secretary of State, working to advance the strategic effectiveness of U.S. foreign assistance programs, with a focus on United Nations negotiations of global development goals. Previously, as a Presidential Management Fellow, Lilly worked closely with U.S. embassies across Africa and the Caribbean to address vulnerable populations in the HIV epidemic. Lilly also served in the Secretary of State’s Office of Global Women’s Issues, advising on gender integration across U.S. foreign policy to advance the status of women and girls worldwide.
In 2009, Lilly completed a 27-month Peace Corps service in the West Indies as a community development volunteer and established an orchestra for at-risk youth in her village of assignment. Her experience in grassroots development was a driving force for her ensuing career in the U.S. government.
Lilly holds a Master of Public Administration and a Master of Science in Social Policy from the University of Pennsylvania, and a Bachelor of Arts in Government and Psychology from Dartmouth College. A former track athlete, Lilly competed in the 2016 CrossFit Games. She resides in Washington, D.C. with her husband, Tim (Canterbury ’03 classmate), their English bulldog, Maggie, and their newborn daughter, Meadow Marie.