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Two Eastern Kentucky University faculty were honored by the Kentucky Communication Association (KCA) during the organization’s annual conference Sept. 11-12 at Montgomery Bell State Park in Burns, Tennessee.

Dr. Kathy Previs, associate professor of public relations, received the Applegate Award for Excellence in Research and Dr. Deborah T. Givens, assistant professor of journalism, received the Vernon Gantt Award for Distinguished Service.

Previs’ research focuses on how issues and stories of science and technology are communicated to the public, and the role of public relations in those discourses.  Previs (pictured at left) has published numerous articles pertaining to public relations, social media, crisis communication, presidential rhetoric and pedagogy.  Her most recent research, which examines how race and gender of scientists in popular media are portrayed, was presented at the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication in San Francisco, California, in August 2015.

Givens (pictured at right) is a director on the boards of the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ) and the International Society of Weekly Newspaper Editors (ISWNE). She is also the SPJ Region 5 director for Illinois, Indiana and Kentucky and served as adviser to the Eastern Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists, which has twice been recognized as an Outstanding Chapter. Givens has hosted and organized conferences for ISWNE, SPJ and the Appalachian Studies Association.

Givens began teaching at Eastern in 2006, following a 20-year career as a newspaper editor and publisher.

Established in 1931, KCA promotes effective teaching, research and practice in the artistic, humanistic and scientific principles of communication.

KCA members met this year in conjunction with the Tennessee Communication Association annual conference, as they do once every four years.