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LSTC News Release

LeRoy T. and Margaret D. Carlson receive LSTC's Distinguished Service Award

Posted Jun 30, 2009

On May 18, Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago President James Kenneth Echols presented the school’s Distinguished Service Award to LeRoy T. Carlson, chairman emeritus of Telephone and Data Systems, Inc. (TDS), and director of U.S. Cellular, and to his wife, Margaret D. Carlson. LSTC’s board of directors annually presents the Distinguished Service Award to individuals whose commitment to Jesus Christ and partnership in the life of the seminary have been exemplary.

“Mr. and Mrs. Carlson have been generous and committed supporters of theological education,” said President Echols. “It is my great joy and delight that the board of directors has chosen to recognize their support of LSTC by presenting them with the seminary’s Distinguished Service Award.”

The Carlson family established the Axel Jacob and Gerda (Maria) Swanson Carlson Chair in Homiletics at the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago in 1996.  It is currently held by the Rev. Dr. Craig A. Satterlee. In October 1997, Mr. Carlson donated his mother’s meticulously collected church papers to the library archives. In 1946, Mr. Carlson and members of his confirmation class at St. Matthew Lutheran Church, Chicago, established the St. Matthew Memorial Scholarship Fund which continues to be awarded annually to LSTC students.

In 2006, the Carlsons established the James Kenneth Echols Prize for Excellence in Preaching to promote quality preaching in a charitable spirit of competition, to inspire students at LSTC to fully use their varied gifts to improve their preaching skills, to increase the visibility and importance of preaching the Gospel on the LSTC campus and the world beyond, and to recognize the Rev. Dr. James Kenneth Echols and his many contributions to LSTC by naming the prize in his honor.

LeRoy T. Carlson is the founder of Chicago-based Telephone and Data Systems, Inc., a Fortune 500 company, which was recently named by as one of the “100 most trustworthy companies.” TDS provides wireless communications services through its subsidiary, U.S. Cellular; wireline communications through TDS Telecom; and printing, distribution, and web enabled communication solutions through Suttle-Straus. Currently, the Carlsons' son, LeRoy T. Carlson, Jr., serves as president and CEO of TDS.


Mark Van Scharrel
Vice President for Advancement


Jan Boden
Director of Communications

The Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago forms visionary leaders to bear witness to the good news of Jesus Christ. Its approximately 290 students come from all parts of the United States and from around the world to study in the masters level and advanced studies programs. Graduates become pastors, other church leaders, and university and seminary professors. LSTC is a seminary of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and a member of the Association of Chicago Theological Schools, allowing students to cross-register among the 12 member seminaries and drawing on a wealth of ecumenical resources. LSTC enjoys a number of cooperative arrangements with the University of Chicago.

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