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Palenchar Named CCI Associate Dean

Michael PalencharAdvertising & Public Relations (ADPR) Associate Professor Michael J. Palenchar has been appointed as CCI’s new Associate Dean for Academic Programs effective July 1, 2017.  

Palenchar is an internationally known scholar whose research and teaching interests include risk and crisis communication, issues management, community awareness of emergency response protocols and manufacturing risks, community right-to-know issues, front groups, and social media during risk situations. He joined UT’s faculty in 2004 and has close to three decades of professional experience working in corporate, nonprofit, and agency environments.

Palenchar’s research has been published in the Journal of Public Relations Research, Public Relations Review, Management Communication Quarterly, Public Relations Journal, Journal of Contingencies and Crisis Management, Environmental Communication, and Communication Research Reports. He is the co-author of Strategic Issues Management (2nd Ed.) with Robert Heath, University of Houston, and has more than 120 journal articles, book chapters, and conference symposia and presentation publications including pre-conferences, panels, and invited speaking engagements. With co-author Robert L. Heath in 2000 and Kathy Fitzpatrick in 2007, he won the Pride Award from the National Communication Association’s Public Relations Division, for the top published article in the field of public relations. In 2008, he received CCI’s Faculty Research Award.

Palenchar’s service and outreach for UT, CCI, and ADPR includes: chairing UT’s Undergraduate Council, co-chairing CCI’s ACEJMC Accreditation Self-Study Committee, chairing UT’s Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP) Writing Committee as part of UT’s SACS Accreditation, and serving as faculty adviser for ADPR’s Sammie Lynn Puett Chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America. He received CCI’s 2009, 2011 and 2014 Faculty Outreach/Service Award. His professional service includes serving as: a Board Member of the Commission for Public Relations Education, former chair of the National Communication Association's Public Relations Division and a member of the editorial board of four scholarly journals.

“Michael Palenchar is an excellent addition to CCI’s administrative team,” said CCI Dean Mike Wirth. ““I look forward to working with him as we continue to evolve and grow our academic programs.”

Palenchar holds a PhD from the University of Florida in mass communication, a Master’s from the University of Houston in communication and a Bachelor’s degree in public relations from the University of Texas at Austin. To see more details about his achievements, see http://www.cci.utk.edu/users/michael-j-palenchar.