Communications Professor Named Teacher of the Year
Berry College Communication Professor Kathy Brittain Richardson has been named “Teacher of the Year” by the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication Small Programs Interest Group.
In selecting Richardson, the judges reviewed a portfolio of materials, including a letter of nomination from a former student. The student wrote: “There are certain mentors in life whose presence does not fade. As time passes, their voices instead resonate, continuing to influence and inspire long after daily conversations and weekly classes cease. Dr. Kathy Richardson is one of those mentors for me, and thousands of others.”
Richardson holds a doctor of philosophy and a master of arts from the University of Georgia and a bachelor of arts from Shorter College. She has taught a wide range of courses and has held multiple positions at Berry College, including serving as associate provost, interim provost, and director of institutional research. She is the current advisor for the Public Relations Student Society of America Berry College chapter.
She is a past editor of Journalism & Communication Monographs, a national research journal, and serves on the editorial boards of the journals Mass Communication and Society and Journal of Mass Media Ethics. As an AEJMC member, Richardson has served as head of the Mass Communication & Society Division.
Her research interests include media ethics, product placement, visual imagery and communication pedagogy. She has co-authored two books, “Media Ethics: Cases in Moral Reasoning” and “Applied Public Relations,” and has written book chapters and journal articles on these topics.
One of the judges said: "I believe this year's TOY recipient personifies the award, because she is an exemplary teacher who clearly demonstrates a commitment to and a heart for her students. Through creative pedagogy and hard work, she has made a difference in countless lives, and SPIG should be proud of this year's winner."
A colleague said this in nominating Richardson, “Throughout her tenure at Berry, Kathy’s teaching and advising have been extraordinary. She has earned every teaching award our college offers – Vulcan Teaching Award, Carden Teaching Award and Garrett Teaching Award – and a national advising award…Students invariably comment on how much they learned from her courses, how they valued the ways in which she challenged them, and how they wanted to take more courses from her.
He added: “Kathy has been a consummate advisor. She regularly carries one of the highest advising loads in the college (not just our department). Despite the numbers, all of her advisees I have ever spoken with admire the respect with which they were treated, her ongoing concern for their personal development, and her vast knowledge of college procedures. If SPIG should ever elect to offer a ‘Teacher of the Century’ award, I’ll be recommending Kathy for that, too.”
Richardson will be honored in August at the Association’s annual meeting in Chicago.
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