CONTACT: MARY GERAGHTY
100 Old Public Library
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 384-0011; fax (319) 384-0024
UI Communication Studies faculty members achieve national, international
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- Steve Duck, chairman of the communication studies
department at the University of Iowa, notes with pride that a recent publishers'
catalog featuring seven "Outstanding New Titles in Communication"
included three titles for which UI communication studies faculty were the
writer, editor, or topic of the book. "I bet not many other departments
of communication studies can see three out of seven like that," Duck
In fact, that recognition is icing on the cake for the department which
has garnered numerous national and international awards in the last 15
months. That this small, but growing, department has achieved such distinction
and maintained high standards while at the same time coping with a large
and growing student demand for courses makes the outcome even more gratifying,
Kristine Fitch was recently awarded a prestigious Leverhulme Fellowship
to visit Loughborough University in the United Kingdom (UK). The fellowships
are awarded annually the London-based Leverhulme Trust and are available
to scholars who are or have been prevented by routine duties from completing
a particularly promising program of original research. Fitch serves as
chair of the Language and Social Interaction Division of the National Communication
Leslie Baxter won the G. R. Miller Book Award in the Interpersonal and
Small Group Division, an honor given by the National Communication Association.
She also was selected for the Elizabeth Andersch Award for Excellence in
Teaching and Scholarship from Ohio University. Baxter is also serving as
immediate-past president of the Western Speech Communication Association.
Duck was selected by his peers worldwide as the winner of the Berscheid-Hatfield
Award for Distinguished Mid career Achievement, which is given by the International
Network on Personal Relationships, a large and fast-growing group of researchers,
practitioners, teachers, and students interested in understanding social
and personal relationships. Duck was also asked to serve as honorary visiting
professor at the University of Bristol, UK, and won a 1996 book award.
In addition to these awards, Duck is completing 15 years as editor of the
Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, now ranked in top three journals
for Communication by Social Sciences Citation Index.
Bruce Gronbeck was named Doctor Honoris Causa at Uppsala University,
Sweden in a ceremony that included a laurel wreath and a 21-gun salute.
David Hingstman, faculty adviser to the A. Craig Baird Debate Team at
the UI, coached the winner of the Top Speaker Award at the 1997 National
Collegiate Debate Tournament as well as the national runners-up at the
tournament in 1996.
Michael McGee was awarded the National Speakers Association Outstanding
Professor Award, and Robert Newman won the National Communication Association's
Diamond Jubilee Book Award.
Leighton Pierce's film "50 Feet of String" was named Best
of the Fest at the Ann Arbor Film Festival. Two other faculty members,
Dudley Andrew and Rick Altman, have received French Knighthoods within
the last two years for their work in film.
"Given the small size of our faculty, to have so many of them recognized
by their national and international peers for work in different emphases
within communication studies is a tribute to the comprehensive program
we have developed at Iowa, and a strong testament to the tremendous contribution
that we have been able to make to the university community," Duck
said. "People sometimes underestimate the importance -- for teaching
-- of strong scholarship, but these awards and recognition by our peers
are one important measure of the skills and strength of education that
the department of communication studies can pass along every day to our