You're always welcome to crash on my couch if you're ever in the area.
Don't really have too much else to offer besides food and a fast internet connection.
I think there may be a few reasons for the situation you're describing.
The world was smaller back in the day, taking a trip to a foreign country was a huge endeavor that took a long time, it wasn't something one could do for a few weeks on summer vacation. There was also no such thing as youtube with lectures broadcast from every major foreign monk overseas with convenient subtitles, no shelves devoted to Buddhism (in English) in the book stores, no Amazon with page after page of Buddhist books available in English, no iTunes with English-language podcasts, no cds with pre-recorded Dharma talks in English. Instead, support had to be gathered for an international trip before even going. This support was easier to drum up, because there really were no other options. These days translators are able to go off and translate first, before looking for support, and in the past it was the opposite.
As far as the exception that proves this rule, I happen to think the western nuns in Tibetan Buddhism have a decent amount of support. Thubten Chodron has a pretty temple, Pema Chodron seems to be pretty popular, I know that Ven Robina Courtin gets flown all over the world to give talks (I went to one). This may be because there hasn't been such a huge female presence in the sangha overseas and western women wanted other women to relate to, I'm not sure.
I also think this situation may be part and parcel of the decline in interest in the humanities in the US (possibly the entire west or further). I read a biography on Franklin when I was doing my masters and was kind of surprised at all of the different social clubs he belong to, mostly involving research of some sort or another. If the guy had been alive today, he'd have been on about 20 different bulletin boards, with maybe 5 different blogs, and at least 1 youtube channel (his kite getting struck by lightning would've gotten a lot of hits). Then I read about guys like Joseph Campbell and the various people he used to interact with daily and it makes me feel rather isolated. Outside of Buddhist bulletin boards and emails I'm lucky if I have a single night of conversation that doesn't revolve around computers or silly videos in a given week. When I actually had a temple to go to nearby, that meant maybe 2~3 days a week to discuss in person. This is with me searching for stuff, I have to wonder if the average person has many encounters with stuff unrelated to pop culture anymore.
PS - you can probably add Japanese/English translation to that list; especially if it's a non-technical topic. The only reason I came back to the US for school in 95 was because I was told that I needed to have some sort of technical skill if I wanted any hope of being able to make ends meet as a translator over there. After school, I don't think I qualified for JET because I'd lived in Japan too long.