For Immediate Release: Aug. 4, 2016
BLOOMSBURG — Kristie Byrum, assistant professor of mass communications at Bloomsburg University, has been elected to the Public Relations Society of America’s (PRSA) College of Fellows.
Byrum, who teaches courses in public relations and media law, is receiving the organization’s highest honor in recognition of her significant contributions to the communications profession and outstanding lifetime career achievement. Fewer than 2 percent of PRSA members — only 350 people nationwide — have been accepted into the College of Fellows. Byrum is among 23 public relations professionals who will be recognized at the International Public Relations Society of America conference in October in Indianapolis.
At BU, Byrum was honored with the university’s Teaching and Learning Enhancement (TALE) Center Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching Award in May, nominated by students who praised her for providing real-life examples based on her real-world knowledge. During the past year, her students collaborated on projects promoting events in Middleburg through the Greater Susquehanna Valley Chamber of Commerce and assisted member agencies of the Berwick Area United Way with strategic planning.
Byrum, faculty adviser to BU’s chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA), also launched BU’s Center for Strategic Communications Services, supported by a presidential strategic planning grant. The center will foster further collaborations between university students and regional businesses and nonprofit groups.
Before arriving at Bloomsburg in 2014, the Lewisburg native served as public relations counselor, agency owner and corporate communications executive. She operated public relations firms in South Carolina, including Byrum Innovation Group Inc., which worked with technology and manufacturing companies and hospital systems. Two years after opening the company, she was honored with the national Sam Walton Award for Entrepreneurship. She earned a bachelor’s degree from Penn State, master’s degree from the University of South Carolina and doctorate from Clemson University.
Chartered in 1947, PRSA is the world’s largest organization of public relations practitioners with membership of more than 22,000 professionals, in addition to more than 10,000 university and college students through PRSSA. The College of Fellows designation recognizes notable public relations leaders and furthers the professionalism and reputation of public relations practice and education.
Bloomsburg University is one of 14 universities in Pennsylvania’s State System of Higher Education. The university serves approximately 10,000 students, offering comprehensive programs of study in the colleges of Education, Business, Liberal Arts and Science and Technology.