School of Communications announces annual faculty excellence awards at advisory board luncheon
Three faculty members in the School of Communications were recognized for their outstanding work this academic year during the spring Advisory Board luncheon April 9.
Dean Paul Parsons and Advisory Board Chair Don Bolden presented associate professors Glenn Scott and Rich Landesberg and assistant professor Barbara Miller with the faculty awards.
Landesberg won the Excellence in Leadership Award, which recognizes a faculty member who richly contributes to the ongoing welfare and betterment of the school, the university and the professions. The selection committee looks for clear, positive outcomes of leadership on the campus and national levels, as well as an ability to bring new ideas to reality that reflect well on Elon and the School of Communications.
Landesberg serves as adviser to Phoenix14News, Elon’s weekly newscast, as a director of the Radio and Television News Directors Association of the Carolinas and as chair of the News Division of the Broadcast Education Association. During his time as Phoenix14 adviser, the show has been named the best newscast in the nation three times.
“Rich brings his 20 years of professional experience into his mentoring role with broadcast news students,” Parsons said. “The result has been an astonishing elevation of Elon’s reputation in the professional world because our students are so good.”
Scott won the Excellence in Teaching Award, which recognizes a faculty member who is excellent in the classroom, current in the discipline and committed to student learning at a high level. The selection committee looks for a teacher who embraces fresh ways to engage students in active learning, who is known as a good academic adviser, and who displays a willingness to teach when and where needed.
Scott has most recently taught courses, such as Reporting for the Public Good, Multimedia Journalism and International Communications. During Winter Term, he taught a study abroad course on Japanese media and culture. Students in his classes have described him as “experienced, caring, optimistic, inspirational, funny, awesome and soothing.”
“Glenn blends his two decades as a journalist in California, Hawaii and Japan with a ‘workshop’ approach to writing,” Parsons said. “He’s known for stimulating intellectual discourse about media in society and giving students substantive feedback on their work.”
Miller won the Excellence in Scholarship Award, which recognizes a faculty member whose scholarly work has a significant intellectual impact. The selection committee looks not only for publication and presentation of the highest quality, but work that advances the School's reputation, along with the mentoring of students in undergraduate research.
Miller, who is the faculty adviser to Elon's chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America, has published in her discipline's leading peer-reviewed journals, such as the Journal of Advertising, Journal of Applied Communication Research, Journal of Public Relations Research, Newspaper Research Journal and Journalism & Mass Communication Quarterly. She also authored a book chapter on science communication and received a highly competitive research grant from the Center for Integrity in Public Communication at Penn State to study ethics in environmental communications.
“Barbara is excelling as a teacher-scholar at Elon, and her work is catapulting her to national stature as a scholar who analyzes marketplace advocacy, crisis management and environmental communications,” Parsons said. “She also is an outstanding mentor of Honors students engaged in undergraduate research.”
Parsons also presented the Dean's Award for Exemplary Service to Gerry Francis, the executive vice president of Elon University. Parsons credited Francis, formerly Elon’s provost, and President Leo Lambert with essentially creating the School of Communications. Francis also was directly responsible for providing the School with a technology budget, creating Main Street Media on Williamson Avenue (where The Pendulum, Phi Psi Cli yearbook and Live Oak Communications reside) and providing support and guidance for the start of the new Interactive Media master’s program.
“Gerry Francis is truly an exemplar, meaning an ideal mentor,” Parsons said. “The new Provost Steven House and I came to Elon one day apart and, figuratively, sat at the feet of a master for almost a decade. Gerry, you have made, and continue to make, a profound difference in the life of the School of Communications and in the lives of our students. We thank you.”