Dean and Otawa Win Booth Award, May Earns Williams Award, at WU Athletic Awards Night

By Robert McKinney, Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6110

SALEM, ORE. -- Senior running back Kevin Dean, senior swimmer Kei Otawa and senior track and field athlete Andrea May received the top awards during Willamette University’s Athletic Awards Night on Monday, April 30. Dean and Otawa were chosen as co-winners of the J.H. Booth Award, which goes to the senior male athlete who most exemplifies and demonstrates outstanding leadership, scholarship and athleticism. May received the Jean Williams Award, which is presented each year to the senior female athletes who provided exceptional leadership, scholarship and athletic success.

Willamette also honored the seniors on its 20 intercollegiate teams during the Athletic Awards Night. The traditional Willamette blankets were distributed to four-year seniors, along with certificates for seniors who competed as Bearcats for only a portion of their collegiate careers. A total of 71 seniors were recognized for contributions to Willamette Athletics.

The J.H. Booth Award co-winners and the Jean Williams Award winner all achieved significant athletic, academic and community service success during their Willamette careers. They also were noted as team leaders for their respective intercollegiate squads.

Dean, who played a total of four seasons on the Willamette football team, graduated in December. He majored in Chemistry with a minor in Classical Studies. He achieved a 3.64 career grade point average. Dean is from Weed High School in Weed, Calif.

As a player for the Bearcats, Dean earned Honorable Mention All-Northwest Conference honors in 2005 and 2006. He also was named First Team ESPN The Magazine Academic All-District VIII as a junior and a senior.

A tremendous blocking back, Dean contributed to the Willamette offense rushing for an average of 261.2 yards and 2.6 touchdowns per game during his career. During his 39 games, WU earned 10,188 rushing yards and 103 rushing touchdowns.

Individually, he carried the ball 98 times for 559 yards during his career for an average of 5.7 yards per carry. In 2006, he rushed for 310 yards on 50 carries (6.2 yards per carry) and tied for the team lead with five touchdowns.

His most visible community service activity was Coast 2 Coast 4 Kalan, in which Dean and fellow WU football players Alex MacKenzie and Wesley Randall traveled by bicycle from San Diego, Calif., to Miami, Fla. -- roughly 3,000 miles -- to honor the memory of their friend and fraternity brother, Kalan Morinaka, and to raise money for the ALS Association in its fight against amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (Lou Gehrig’s disease). Their successful journey was relayed to the nation through the Coast 2 Coast 4 Kalan web site and its daily blog updates.

Dean also has participated with the football team in the United Way Days of Caring. He has contributed to the community as a mentor for troubled youngsters and through the Reading is Leading program. On campus, he has been a member of the Student Athlete Advisory Committee and the WU Football Leadership Council.

As a Chemistry major, Dean has been involved with the Science Collaborative Research Project and has received a Sigma Xi Research Fellowship. He received the Peterson Family Scholarship in Chemistry, the Sigma Alpha Epsilon Scholarship and the Haynes McHale Award. He attended the Northwest Undergraduate Science Research Conference at the Oregon Health and Science University and was honored at the Student Scholarship Recognition Day.

Otawa competed for the Willamette men’s swimming team each of the past four seasons. He is majoring in Mathematics and has earned a 3.55 cumulative grade point average. He attended Moscow High School in Moscow, Idaho.

During his four years with the Bearcats, Otawa finished in the Top 10 at the Northwest Conference Swimming Championships a total of 11 times, including eight Top 3 finishes. In 2006-07, he took second at the NWC Championships in the 200-yard breaststroke (2:12.28) and was third in the 100-yard breaststroke (59.22 seconds) and the 50-yard freestyle (21.67 seconds). He was chosen NWC Swimmer of the Week once and was nominated for the award four other times. Otawa was selected NWC Swimmer of the Week two times in 2005-06.

He has the third, fifth and ninth fastest times in Willamette history in the 100-yard breaststroke. He also owns the seventh, eighth and ninth best times in WU history in the 200-yard breaststroke, as well as the 10th fastest time in the 100-yard freestyle.

Otawa has been a quiet, yet effective leader of the Willamette swimming team. He was a key reason the team remained focused during this season’s challenging practice and competition schedule -- all on the road. He was WU’s team MVP in 2005-06 and 2006-07.

In his first three seasons, he was chosen as a Northwest Conference Scholar-Athlete and is eligible to receive the honor again this season. He was named Willamette Male Athlete of the Month in November, 2006.

He is the president of the local chapter of the Circle K philanthropic organization. He organizes many of the local Circle K activities, which are designed to improve the community and to help charitable organizations. He also has participated in the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life. He was chosen Phi Delta Theta Man of the Year and is a volunteer coach with the Bearcat Swim Club for area youngsters.

Otawa was actively involved in the reconstruction of Bogalusa, Louisiana following Hurricane Katrina. He provided hands-on assistance, as he worked during the summer of 2005 to rebuild the Louisiana town.

At Willamette, Otawa has received the Taul Watanabe Scholarship, the Phi Delta Theta Paul G. & Ruth R. Palmer Scholarship and the Sam Walton Scholarship. He has participated in the Associated Students of Willamette University, has been an Opening Days Leader and has been an assistant in the Language Learning Center. He serves on the Senior Class Gift Committee. He was recognized during the 2006 Student Scholarship Recognition Day for his work on the short animated film “Penguins.”

May has been a member of the WU women’s track and field team for four years. She is majoring in Biology with a minor in Chemistry and has a career 3.57 grade point average. May is from Bellingham, Wash., where she graduated from Sehome High School. She attended Brown University in the Ivy League for one year, before transferring to Willamette.

She has earned All-America honors twice, by placing eighth in the 4 x 400-meter relay at the 2005 NCAA National Championships and by helping the relay team take second place in 2006. She has achieved a provisional qualifying mark for the 2007 NCAA National Championships in the 100-meter hurdles.

May has won a total of seven Northwest Conference individual track and field titles. She won the 100-meter dash
in 2005, 2006 and 2007; took first place in the 200-meter dash in 2005 and 2006; and won the 100-meter hurdles in 2006 and 2007.

She holds the Willamette record with this year’s top time of 14.84 seconds in the 100-meter hurdles. She was part of WU’s 4 x 400-meter relay team that established the school record at 3:47.85 in 2006.

In 2005 and 2006, May was named to the NTFCCCA All-Academic Team and is on target to be an All-Academic selection in 2007. The NTFCCCA All-Academic Team requires a minimum of a 3.5 grade point average and a national qualifying mark in at least one event.

At Willamette, she has received the P.L. Heitmeier Scholar Award. She has served an internship at Salem Hospital and has been a Summer Events and Conferences Coordinator at Willamette for two years. She has helped the Willamette baseball team with operations and fund raising and has been the Willamette Track and Field Kid Camp Coordinator.

Andrea May (left) received the Jean Williams Award and Kei Otawa (right) was a co-winner of the J.H. Booth Award at the 2007 Athletic Awards Night. Kevin Dean, who graduated in December, also was a co-winner of the J.H. Booth Award.

Andrea May (left) received the Jean Williams Award and Kei Otawa (right) was a co-winner of the J.H. Booth Award at the 2007 Athletic Awards Night. Kevin Dean, who graduated in December, also was a co-winner of the J.H. Booth Award.