Randy Piland

Senior Lecturer in Communications
Priestley Building 200
2850 Campus Box
Elon, NC 27244
rpiland@elon.edu (336) 278-5232

Brief Biography

Thirty years as a photojournalist at four newspapers in Georgia, Massachusetts and Tennessee. Thirteen of those years as picture editor and senior photographer at The Tennessean in Nashville. While there he initiated the transition from film to digital, helped establish the use of their digital archive system and was the lead digital imaging trainer. Attended numerous professional workshops at the Poynter Institute, University of Missouri, UNC-CH as well as others, and has served on the multimedia team at Western Kentucky University's annual Mountain Workshops. Helped establish and served on faculty for the 2011, 2012 & 2013 BSA Photographic Workshops at Philmont Training Center in New Mexico. Came to Elon in 2005.


BS - Middle Tennessee State University 

MA - Ohio University

Courses Taught


VIsual Storytelling

Corporate Publishing

Web Publishing

iMedia Capstone

iMedia Fly-In (Panama 2010, 11 & 12; Cuba 2013 & 14)

Leadership Positions

NPPA, Region Six Chair 2012–present

Faculty Fellow for Technology 2011, 2012

NPPA, Region Six Associate Chair 2010-12

Current Projects

Served as imaging coach for the 2013 Mountain Workshops in Owensboro, KY. Trained students for the imaging staff who prepared all images used on the website as well as for a fifty print exhibit to be displayed both at Western Kentucky University and for the community of Owensboro.


Grants Awarded

2007 Summer Fellowship Grant - A Study of Parallels within Visual Ethnography and Journalistic Storytelling - England

Professional Activities

Member of the National Press Photographers Association

Member of the National Association of Photoshop Professionals 

Service Activities

Phi Psi Cli Yearbook Advisor

NPPA Student Chapter Advisor

School of Communications Technology Committee

TLT Search Committee

NC Ambassador for ShelterBox USA

Personal Information

Eagle Scout

Professional Development

The Annual Atlanta Seminar in Photojournalism,  2005 – 2013

TEACHAPALOOSA 2013, Poynter Institute, St. Petersburg, FL

The 2012 Northern Short Course in Photojournalism, Newark, NJ


2012 ROBIN F. GARLAND EDUCATOR AWARD for outstanding service as a photojournalism educator presented by the National Press Photographers Association. 

2011 Faculty Excellence for Service and Leadership Award in the School of Communications

2010 Broadcast Educators Association Best of Festival Award, Faculty, Interactive Media Category