Keith Hautala

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Communication and Information Dinner Recognizes Excellence

Published: Dec 14, 2012

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Dec. 14, 2012) — The University of Kentucky's College of Communication and Information held its 13th annual Excellence Awards dinner Friday, Nov. 30, at the Hilary J. Boone Center to honor outstanding faculty, staff, students and alumni. 

 

The UK Alumni Association sponsored a reception prior to the recognition dinner. 

The college recognized several student scholarship and fellowship recipients, in addition to the following staff, faculty, alumni and friends:

 

Matthew Cockerell received this year's Outstanding Staff Award. Cockerell has been at UK since 1999, when he first began pursuing his degree in political science. Upon graduation, he attended the UK College of Law and eventually continued his education at the School of Library and Information Science. He currently serves as a technologist and instructional producer for the college and plays an integral role in delivering quality online courses.

 

Regina D. Francies received this year's award for faculty community service. After receiving her Ph.D. in communication from UK in 2004, she joined the college as a faculty lecturer for the Division of Instructional Communication, taking on an additional role as the college’s recruitment, retention and outreach coordinator. In addition to her regular work assignment, Francies has taken it upon herself to organize several food collections, shoe drives and other community service opportunities for CI students. Most recently, she participated in UK’s Alternative Spring Break program, where she served as a site advisor in the Dominican Republic.

 

Elisia L. Cohen, associate professor in communication, received this year's award for faculty excellence in research. In the past year, Cohen has had seven articles published in high-impact journals, edited one book, contributed four scholarly book chapters, gave five competitive conference presentations and submitted more than $4 million in funding requests. Her cervical-cancer-free Kentucky campaign, “causethemovement.org” was recognized for its social media innovation by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention's “Research to Reality” series. The majority of her research projects are concerned with vaccination of adolescent or adult populations in rural Eastern Kentucky and how to utilize social media, video vignettes and other health communication campaigns to increase adherence. Most recently Cohen was approved for grant from Merck pharmaceuticals, to expand her vaccination research by examining adolescents' adherence.

 

Renee M. Kaufmann was the recipient of this year’s award for graduate teaching excellence. Kaufmann is a second-year doctoral student in the college’s Graduate Program in Communication. In addition to her coursework, she is the CIS 110 and 111 assistant, a teaching mentor for graduate assistants and a graduate representative on the university’s Quality Enhancement Program. She has worked to analyze and assess courses, construct effective faculty development workshops, and co-edit the CIS 110 and 111 workbook. Kaufmann is committed to improving pedagogy and encouraging online learning and continues to remain interested in instructional communication research. 

 

Brandi N. Frisby, assistant professor in communication, received this year’s award for faculty excellence in teaching. Frisby graduated in 2010 with her Ph.D. in communication from West Virginia University. She has taught 9 undergraduate and graduate courses for the college, and has been praised for her ability to engage students in the classroom and encourage active participation. Her research interests include instructional communication and classroom engagement, as well as communication strategies for relational challenges. Most recently, Frisby was cited as an expert in the Wall Street Journal for an article on the science of flirting.

 

Michael Carozza was named the College of Communication and Information’s 2012-2013 outstanding alumnus. Carozza earned his bachelor’s degree from Penn State University and two master’s degrees at UK, in communication in 1977 and in public administration in 1978. For more than two decades, he was an executive at the Bristol-Myers Squibb Company, where he retuned in 2011 as vice president of federal government affairs and head of the Washington, D.C., office. Carozza currently serves on the college’s national advisory board.  

 

Don Jacobs was named this year’s "Friend of the College." Jacobs is the owner of the Don Jacobs Organization, which operates several car dealerships in Lexington. He grew up in Lexington where he attended The Lexington School. He received his B.A. in Latin American studies at Denison University in Granville, Ohio. The Don Jacobs Organization has been family owned and operated since 1971. Jacobs has created several opportunities for students in the School of Journalism and Telecommunications. His intern programs and the Summer Street Team provide real-world job experience where students can apply what they learn in our classrooms. This fall, he introduced a new scholarship challenge designed specifically for JAT students to compete for the development of an advertising campaign. 

 

Among additional recognitions were the outstanding juniors and seniors from the Department of Communication, Tamika Tompoulidis, Courtney Aubrey, Evan Gorman, Elizabeth Pawley and Catherine Rembrandt. The Division of Instructional Communication recognized students Taban Flores and Kyle Wooley and staff member Linda Barker. The School of Journalism and Telecommunications recognized Kirk Handselmann and Katherine Emoff.  

 

Special recognition of the 25th anniversary of the Hallie Day Blackburn Scholarship in the School of Library and Information Science was given to Barbara Stephenson of the Blackburn family; the 25th recipient of the scholarship was Zachary Upton. In addition, the following students from the Graduate Program in Communication were honored: Kathryn Anthony, Katharine Head, Nicholas Iannarino, Elizabeth Petrun, Rachael Record, Jenna Reno, Sara Shaunfield, Nicole Staricek, Sarah Vos and Laura Young.

 

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