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 Contributor Biographies 9.1

Dr Douglas Ashwell is a lecturer in the School of Communication, Journalism and Marketing in Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand. His research interests include science communication, particularly in the news media, and he has conducted a major study of the way the New Zealand press reported the debate on genetic modification between 1998 and 2002. He has also specialised in interpersonal communication, with a particular interest in neuro linguistic programming. 

Liz Bridgen leads the MA Public Relations and MA International Public Relations programmes within Leicester Media School at De Montfort University, Leicester, UK. She has an MA in Mass Communications from the University of Leicester and previously worked in public relations practice in the UK and Iceland where she specialised in corporate communications for clients including Visa, Bosch and the British Post Office.

Liz Bridgens published papers explore gender, social change and the lived experience of public relations practitioners, with a particular focus of the implications of technology on the lives of public relations practitioners. She has also delivered refereed papers at BledCom and at the International Public Relations Research Conference in Miami, Florida as well as at conferences run by EUPRERA (the European Public Relations Education and Research Association) and MeCCSA (the Media, Communication and Cultural Studies Association).

Rowena Briones is a doctoral candidate and instructor of record at the University of Maryland. Her research interests focus on how social media, the web, and technology impact the practice of public relations and health communication.

Peter K. Bsumek is Associate Professor of Communication Studies at James Madison University, Harrisonburg, VA, USA.  He is the coordinator of the Advocacy Studies concentration and the interdisciplinary Environmental Studies minor.  His scholarship explores the relationship between rhetoric, science and ideology in environmental advocacy, the history of environmental advocacy, the use of social marketing to promote sustainability in organisations and communities, and processes of public deliberation and decision-making. 

Dr Garcia specialises in teaching and research on public relations and communication. He has more than a decade of experience in the professional world of public relations for international firms such as Edelman and Pleon where he implemented communication programs for global companies.
He has published in academic publications such as Public Relations Review, Global Media Journal, Journal of Communication and Religion, International Journal of Sport Communication, and PRism, among others.

Dr Damian Gleeson has two decades of senior public relations experience across not-for-profit and corporate sectors. For the past eight years he has lectured in public relations: his research interests include public relations history in Australia and internationally, public relations education, issues and crisis communication.  

Jin K. Hammick is a doctoral candidate in advertising, School of Journalism and Mass Communications at the University of Florida. Her research area focuses on the use and effect of emerging media in brand communication.

Melanie James, Ph.D. is a Senior Lecturer in communication, having joined the University of Newcastle in 2006 after working for many years in senior public relations management roles in the government, health and financial services sectors. She has published in journals such as The Journal of Public Relations Research, Public Relations Review, Asia Pacific Public Relations Journal and PRism. She is currently writing a book on strategic positioning in public relations for Routledge.

Melissa Janoske is a third year doctoral candidate at the University of Maryland. Her research interests include social media and online communities, crisis communication, and public relations.

Jennifer M. Keller is an assistant professor in the journalism department at Western Washington University.  Prior to teaching, she spent more than 15 years as a public relations professional for a variety of organisations in Washington, D.C., Chicago, and Seattle. She has a masters degree in public relations from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University.

Corey A. Hickerson, Ph.D., joined the School of Communication Studies faculty at James Madison University in 2005.  He is an associate professor and coordinates the public relations concentration.  His research interests involve public relations, environmental communication and education.  His most recent publications include a paper about student speaking assessment published in Assessment in Education: Principles, Policy & Practice and another article about faculty graduate preparation in Communication Research Reports.

Dr. Ji Young Kim is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Communication at Bradley University. She holds a Ph.D. in Mass Communications from the University of Florida. Her primary research interests are in public relations and strategic communication in both international and national contexts.

Michael Paquette is a graduate student at the University of Maryland pursuing his Ph.D. in public relations. His research interests include crisis communication and international public relations. 

Prue Robson is a Lecturer in Communication at the University of Newcastle. Her research interests include social media, strategic communication and public relations education. Her current work examines best practice frameworks for social media communication. Prue has over eight years experience in public relations and marketing having been involved in strategy development, campaign planning and event management for regional and national clients in Australia.  

Dr Peter Simmons is Associate Professor of Communication and Associate Head in the School of Communication and Creative Industries, Charles Sturt University, Bathurst, Australia. He is a member of the Institute of Land, Water and Society research centre. His ongoing research explores the role of procedural and interactional fairness in communication across a range of professions and contexts including sport officiating, management, professional communication and university teaching.

Dr Felicity Small is a lecturer in the School of Management and Marketing at Charles Sturt University.  She is a member of the Institute of Land, Water and Society. Her research interests are in environmental marketing and consumer imagination.  She has published in the areas of consumer research and in higher education.

Brian G. Smith, Ph.D. (University of Maryland, 2009) researches public engagement with organisations via digital and online interactive media, and the organisational response, integrated communication (iComm). He is currently an assistant professor in the Brian Lamb School of Communication at Purdue University. Prior to his doctoral degree, Dr. Smith filled professional positions in public relations, marketing, online brand management, and publishing. He teaches courses in public relations, integrated communication, and digital and online communication management. He manages a student blog and blogs on communication at

Rachel Stohr is a Ph.D. student in Organizational Communication at the University of Nebraska? Lincoln Department of Communication Studies.  She holds B. A. and M. A. qualifications from the University of New Mexico and her research interests include organising for social justice, rhetorical approaches to citizenship, gendered discourses of organisational culture and politics, and dialogic communication.  

Dr Luke Strongman teaches communication and humanities at the Open Polytechnic of New Zealand.  He has published on diverse topics including anthropological interpretation of archaeological artefacts, mentoring, e-learning, and humanities and engineering. His research interests are interdisciplinary, with a recent focus on distance learning pedagogy and research, and risk management.

Judith McIntosh White holds a bachelors degree in journalism from the Medill School of Journalism, Northwestern University; a masters of science in science and technology journalism from the College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, Texas A&M University; and a doctorate in agricultural communications from the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Texas A&M University.  She has worked as a newspaper reporter, magazine editor, and freelance biomedical editor, and as a public information officer for more than 20 years. Dr White is now an assistant professor of journalism and mass communication at the University of New Mexico.  Her research interests lie in the dissemination of science, health and technology information using mass media and entertainment education venues. 

Matt Willis studied Health Communication at the University of New Mexico where he wrote his masters thesis investigating the relationship between providers and Internet-informed patients. Now a doctoral candidate at the Syracuse University School of Information Studies, Matt continues to focus on his passion for understanding health and technology. His current research interest focuses on health consumers management and work practices across various documents and the electronic personal health record. Matts other research interests include participatory medicine, health and social media, health information seeking, computer supported cooperative work, and the social shaping of technology. Matt is also a fellow of the National Physical Science Consortium and has research experience from five different organisations including academic, government, non-profit, and private sectors.


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