Carmen Jany, a UC Santa Barbara doctoral candidate who has uncovered the grammatical structure of Chimariko, an extinct language of native northern California, has been given the Winifred and Louis Lancaster Award for this year's best dissertation.
In nomination letters for the award, UCSB linguists described her research as "a remarkable contribution to linguistics, and a most impressive feat" that resulted in a complete reference grammar for Chimariko.
The Chimariko people were a small tribe who lived along 20 miles of the Trinity River.
By the early 1900s, only a few individuals remained.
Jany, a native of Switzerland, will receive a plaque and a cash award of $1,000.
She recently completed her Ph.D. in linguistics at UCSB and has accepted a position as assistant professor of second language acquisition and Spanish in the Department of World Languages at California State University, San Bernardino.
The dissertation award is named in memory of Louis and Winifred Lancaster, generous benefactors of UCSB.
The couple helped establish The UCSB Foundation and were founding members of the UCSB Affiliates.
Over the years, the Lancasters provided support for scholarships and fellowships and established an endowed chair in international relations.