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An Eastern Kentucky University faculty member recently received the most prestigious honor presented by the Association for Business Communication (ABC).

Dr. Marcel Robles, a professor in the corporate communication and technology program in EKU’s School of Business, was one of only two recipients of the ABC Fellow Award, which the international organization bestows upon business communication professionals who make “a significant impact not only on their organization and ABC, but also on the communications profession at large. Dr. Robles has distinguished herself as a recognized leader across the globe.”

Only 90 of the world’s top leaders have earned the honor, considered by the association to be “a career achievement award for the industry.”

Marcel RoblesRobles has led the ABC as president and member of its executive committee for the past three years, and will continue to serve as immediate past president on the executive committee. Beginning in 2020, she will serve as a board member of the ABC Foundation.

The ABC award, presented at an annual conference in Detroit, Michigan, is only the latest on a long list of honors for Robles, who joined the EKU faculty in 2002. In 2018, she received the Business Communication Impact Award from the ABC in recognition of an article believed to have had the greatest impact in the business communication field in the past five years. The article, titled “Executive Perceptions of the Top 10 Soft Skills Needed in Today’s Workplace,” was published in the Business and Professional Communication Quarterly.

In 2016, Robles was elected as president of the Association for Research in Business Education for 2016-18. The following year, Robles represented the United States, South Korea, Germany, Hungary and China at the Chinese Business Communication and Negotiation Committee of Industrial and Economic Management Colleges, and was appointed to a three-year term as adviser for the China Communication and Negotiation Committee.

At Eastern, she received the Jack L. Dyer Excellence in Teaching Award in 2017 and the Critical Thinking Teacher of the Year Award in 2016.

Robles has taught undergraduate courses in professional communication, office procedures and administration, business communication, entrepreneurship, principles of management, managerial reports, teaching methods, management information systems, computer applications, electronic data input and database applications, among others. In addition, she has taught graduate courses in managerial communication, business research, strategic business communication, and web design, among others.

“I hope I have made a difference and can continue to bring business communication to the forefront of power skills that business students need when they graduate from EKU,” Robles said. “My research is on soft skills, which I now like to call power skills. When I have surveyed business executives, they note that communication skills are the number-one quality they want in new hires.”

Robles credited her ABC and EKU colleagues for her success. “In the many officer roles I have had with ABC and other national and international organizations, I could never have fulfilled the positions effectively without the help of many people. I so appreciate my colleagues within the associations, as well as my colleagues at EKU. All of us work together and make one another shine.”

Since its founding in 1935, the Association for Business Communication has grown into the premiere international business communication organization, with five regional divisions in the U.S. and four international divisions. With Sage Publications, ABC publishes two top journals, International Journal of Business Communication and Business and Professional Communication Quarterly, each of which reaches an audience of more than 9,000 international business communication educators, researchers, and practitioners.