The first class of Institute for Public Relations Research Fellows will be inducted at the Annual Distinguished Lecture & Awards Dinner, November 5, 2008 at the New York City Yale Club. The Institute Board has established this body to provide overall leadership for the organization’s research program.
“The Fellows will catalyze new research and provide expert guidance as we continue to build and share the science beneath the art of public relations,” said Frank Ovaitt, Institute president and CEO. “There are so many assumptions regarding the practice of public relations that still need rigorous testing and support to establish a true profession.”
Inducted at the dinner will be Kathryn Collins (General Motors), James E. Grunig, Ph.D. (University of Maryland), David Michaelson, Ph.D. (Echo Research), Don W. Stacks, Ph.D. (University of Miami), Louis C. Williams (L.C. Williams & Associates), and Donald K. Wright, Ph.D. (Boston University). The criteria for selection include international research reputations in either academia or the practice, and a commitment to work with the Institute to identify and address broad research needs in the public relations field.
Ovaitt pointed to an ongoing series of research projects conducted under the Institute’s auspices to examine long-held claims that public relations and advertising produce different effects. “This is indicative of the ground-breaking topics that we hope the Institute Research Fellows will tackle. Their roles will include defining, encouraging, and sometimes carrying out this kind of research themselves,” he said.
Tickets and tables for the event can be purchased by visiting the Institute’s website, www.instituteforpr.org, or calling Jenn Moyer at +1 352 392 0280.
Institute for Public Relations Research Fellows Biographies
Kathryn Collins, General Motors’ Director of Communications Research, majored in industrial psychology (Oakland University) and has an international reputation for corporate communication measurement and research. She has spoken at numerous events on communication research, with a specialty in measurement and evaluation of internal/employee communications. Collins’ expertise is in global research, reputation measurement, and client-focused media satisfaction. A founding member of the Commission on Public Relations Measurement & Evaluation, she has authored or co-authored several practitioner-oriented publications. Her expertise in advanced statistical modeling in the evaluation and prediction of employee communications is well-known within the corporate communications area.
Dr. David Michaelson, President, Echo Research, received his doctorate in anthropology (Ph.D., New School for Social Research) and has an international reputation in public relations and corporate communications measurement and research. He has published in the academic and professional worlds on communication-related topics such as investor relations, efficacy of public relations vis-à-vis advertising, and content analysis methodology. Dr. Michaelson has been managing director for several global public relations firms. At Burson-Marsteller, he won two Silver Anvils. He received a Golden Ruler Award Certificate of Merit from the Institute for Public Relations. As President of Echo Research, he was the first practitioner since Walt Lindenmann to win the Jackson Jackson & Wagner Behavioral Science Prize.
Louis C. Williams is chairman of L.C. Williams & Associates, one of the oldest public relations research firms. Before this he was Hill & Knowlton’s national resource in research. He is one of the best known public relations research practitioners, having written several IABC books on conducting research as well as speaking at numerous professional meetings on research and counseling. He is past chairman of the International Association of Business Communicators and an elected IABC Fellow, an honorary trustee of the Institute for Public Relations, and a member of the Commission on Public Relations Measurement & Evaluation.
Dr. James E. Grunig, emeritus professor of communication, University of Maryland, earned his Ph.D. at the University of Wisconsin. He has an international reputation in public relations research and theory. A prolific writer and researcher, he has been at the forefront of much of contemporary public relations research, including the ground-breaking Excellence series of books. A member of the Commission on Public Relations Measurement & Evaluation, Dr. Grunig is the winner of the Institute for Public Relations’ Pathfinder Award, the Jackson Jackson & Wagner Behavioral Science Prize, the Deutschmann Award for Research from the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication, and the 2008 Arthur W. Page Society Distinguished Service Award.
Dr. Don W. Stacks, professor in the University of Miami School of Communication, has an international reputation in public relations research and theory. He earned his Ph.D. at the University of Florida. He is the author of over 150 articles, chapters and professional papers, as well as seven books, to include writing the Primer of Public Relations Research and editing the Dictionary of Public Relations Research and Measurement. He is a trustee of the Institute for Public Relations and a member of the Commission on Public Relations Measurement & Evaluation. Dr. Stacks is the winner of the Institute’s Pathfinder Award, the Jackson Jackson & Wagner Behavioral Science Prize, the PRSA Educator of the Year, and has been elected a Research Fellow of the Eastern Communication Association. He is currently the senior advisor on the Colombian (SA) CSR Project, and conducting research in several different areas.
Dr. Donald K. Wright, professor of public relations at Boston University, earned his Ph.D. at the University of Minnesota and has an international reputation in public relations research and theory. He is the author of numerous articles, book chapters, and professional papers. He is the founding editor of Public Relations Journal and past chair of the Commission on Public Relations Measurement & Evaluation. He is the former President of the International Public Relations Association. Dr. Wright is a trustee of the Institute for Public Relations and winner of its Pathfinder Award, the Jackson Jackson & Wagner Behavioral Science Prize, the Arthur W. Page Society’s Distinguished Service Award, and the PRSA Educator of the Year. He directs these annual meetings for the Institute: the Executive Forum, the Leadership Forum and the Summit on Measurement.
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