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Faculty

The Department of Communication Faculty Bios and Contact


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Kelly Carr
Position: Department Chair, Associate Professor
  • Department: Communication
  • Office Location:  Building 36, Room 177

Dr. Kelly Carr is the department chair and an associate professor of communication.

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Adam Blood
Position: Instructor
  • Department: Communication
  • Office Location:  Building 36, Room 124

Adam Blood, instructor of communication, teaches public speaking and is the director of the UWF Speech and Debate program.

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John Bloodworth
Position: Lecturer
  • Department: Communication
  • Office Location:  Building 36, Room 111

Dr. John Bloodworth, lecturer in communication, teaches basic communication skills and principles of mass communication.

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Athena du Pré
Position: Distinguished University Professor
  • Department: Communication
  • Office Location:  Building 36, Room 133

Dr. Athena du Pré, a Distinguished University Professor in Communication, teaches leadership, health communication, workplace dynamics and interpersonal communication. She also directs graduate programs in strategic communication and leadership, and health communication leadership.

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Chris Fenner
Position: Instructor
  • Department: Communication
  • Office Location:  Building 36, Room 124

Dr. Chris Fenner, associate professor of communication, teaches public relations, strategic communication and persuasion.

Kristi Gilmore Headshot
Kristi Gilmore
Position: Assistant Professor
  • Department: Communication
  • Office Location:  Building 36, Room 184

Kristi Gilmore, assistant professor, teaches media relations, crisis communication, and advertising and public relations concepts.

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Ying Huang
Position: Associate Professor
  • Department: Communication
  • Office Location:  Building 36, Room 141

Dr. Ying Huang, associate professor of communication, teaches advertising, quantitative research methods and visual communication.

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Will Kennedy
Position: Assistant Professor of Clinical Practice
  • Department: Communication
  • Office Location:  Building 36, Room 178

Will Kennedy is an assistant professor of clinical practice in the UWF Department of Communication. He teaches courses focusing on journalism, video production, content creation and writing for new

Laura Kirby
Position: Lead Faculty UWF Emerald Coast Department of Communication, Instructor, and Internship Coordinator
  • Department: Communication
  • Office Location:  Building 36, Room 185

Laura Kirby, instructor of communication, teaches business and professional communication, writing for communication, and public speaking classes. She also coordinates the internship program for the department.

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Kim LeDuff
Position: Professor of Communication and Vice President for Academic Engagement and Student Affairs
  • Department: Communication
  • Office Location:  Building 36, Room 178

Kim LeDuff, Ph.D. is Vice President for Academic Engagement and Student Affairs at the University of West Florida.

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Paul Pilger
Position: Instructor
  • Department: Communication
  • Office Location:  Building 36, Room 139

Paul Pilger teaches mass communication and communication writing courses.

Heather Riddell
Position: Assistant Professor
  • Department: Communication
  • Office Location:  Building 36, Room 136

Dr. Heather Riddell, assistant professor of communication, teaches social media communication and media writing.

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Martha Saunders
Position: UWF President
  • Department: Communication
  • Office Location:  Building 36, Room 178

Martha Dunagin Saunders is the sixth president of the University of West Florida.

Willie Tubbs
Position: Assistant Professor
  • Department: Communication
  • Office Location:  Building 36, Room 183

Dr. Willie Tubbs is an assistant professor in the Department of Communication.

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Kurt Wise
Position: Professor
  • Department: Communication
  • Office Location:  Building 36, Room 110

Dr. Kurt Wise is a public relations professor and oversees the master’s program capstone courses.


Emeritus Faculty

The Department of Communication Emeritus Faculty Members


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Thomas Groth
Position: Professor Emeritus
  • Department: Communication
  • Office Location:  Building 36, Room 142

Dr. Thomas Groth, professor of advertising and Professor Emeritus in the Department of Communication, taught advertising methods, advertising creative direction, and advertising strategy and tactics.

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Bruce Swain
Position: Professor Emeritus
  • Department: Communication
  • Office Location:  Building 36, Room 114

Bruce Swain is an Emeritus Professor. Dr. Swain was named a National Kellogg Fellow, a Poynter Fellow, A Modern Media Institute Fellow, and a Gannett Fellow. He also was named 2016 Educator of the Year by the Southeast Journalism Conference.

Stacy Bathrick

  • Adjunct
  • Department: Communication
  • phone8504742874
  • emailsbathrick@uwf.edu
  • Office Location: Building 36, Room 137
  • Courses: SPC2608 Basic Comm Skills - Online
  • Short Bio: Stacy Bathrick has 20 years military experience. She served as a military spokeswoman for 12 years at various organizational levels including coalition forces in Afghanistan. Stacy earned a bachelor’s degree in Public Relations from Auburn University and a master’s degree in Management and Leadership from Campbellsville University. She is also an honorary member of Lambda Pi Eta Communication Studies honor society.

Jeff Cassady

  • Adjunct
  • Department: Communication
  • phone8504742874
  • emailjcassady@uwf.edu
  • Office Location: Building 36, Room 137
  • Short Bio: Jeffrey Cassady has taught news reporting at UWF since 2015. Before joining UWF, Cassady worked as a reporter, copy editor and page designer for several newspapers, including the Pensacola News Journal, the Daytona Beach News-Journal and the Marietta Daily Journal. Cassady has a bachelor's degree in communication arts/journalism from the University of West Florida and a law degree from Stetson University.

Sonya Daniel

  • Adjunct
  • Department: Communication
  • phone8504742874
  • emailsdaniel@uwf.edu
  • Office Location: Building 36, Room 137
  • Courses: PUR 3100, Public Relations Writing
  • Short Bio: Sonya Daniel has spent more than 30 years in the communications field. Most of that time has been in Public Relations for local government agencies in Florida. She joined the Escambia County Supervisor of Elections Office in 2011 and currently serves as the Deputy Supervisor of Elections for Administration. She received a bachelor’s degree in communication arts from Shorter University, in Rome, Georgia and a master’s degree in strategic communications and leadership from UWF.

Kirsten Efird

  • Adjunct
  • Department: Communication
  • phone8504742874
  • emailkefird@uwf.edu
  • Office Location: Building 36, Room 137
  • Short Bio: Kirsten Efird has taught design for newspaper and publication at UWF since 1996. She earned her undergraduate degree in journalism from Auburn University, and a master's degree in journalism, with a specialty in newspaper design, from the University of Missouri School of Journalism.

Christian Garman

  • Adjunct
  • Department: Communication
  • phone8504742874
  • emailcgarman@uwf.edu
  • Office Location: Building 36, Room 137
  • Courses: RTV 3400
  • Short Bio: Christian Garman spent 20 years as the morning meteorologist at WEAR TV in Pensacola from 1996-2016. He left the world of live television to work at the UWF's Innovation Institute, currently serving as the Interim Director of Program Development. Garman regularly fills in at WEAR doing the weather. He's also their play-by-play high school football announcer and their analyst for high school basketball. Garman holds a Master's in strategic communication and leadership from UWF.

Gary Ghioto

  • Adjunct
  • Department: Communication
  • phone8504742874
  • emailgghioto@uwf.edu
  • Office Location: Building 36, Room 137
  • Short Bio: Ghioto has taught online and in the classroom at UWF since 2003. He teaches JOU 3314, Environmental Reporting; JOU 3100, News Reporting; and JOU 3700, Issues in Journalism. Ghioto worked as a reporter, bureau chief, editor and correspondent for daily newspapers in New England, including The Boston Globe and Foster’s Daily Democrat. He was employed by United Press International and Reuters and worked at the Pensacola News Journal from 2009-2014 as content editor and chief content editor.

Brandy Gottlieb

John James

  • Adjunct
  • Department: Communication
  • phone8504742874
  • emailjjames3@uwf.edu
  • Office Location: Building 36, Room 137
  • Short Bio: John James received his Bachelor of Arts in communication from UWF in 1999 and Master of Arts in strategic communication and Leadership at UWF in 2012. He has primarily worked in the field of graphics/visual communication and serves as a Senior Strategic Communication Specialist for the U.S. Air Force Air Research Laboratory's Munitions Directorate.

Ed Parent

  • Adjunct
  • Department: Communication
  • phone8504742874
  • emaileparent@uwf.edu
  • Office Location: Building 36, Room 137
  • Short Bio: Ed Parent has more than 35 years of experience in the communication field and 22 years of service in the United States Navy. He holds a bachelor’s degree in organizational communication and a master’s degree in health communication leadership.

Nathan Smith

  • Adjunct
  • Department: Communication
  • phone8504742874
  • emailnsmith1@uwf.edu
  • Office Location: Building 36, Room 137
  • Short Bio: Nathan "Briton" Smith has many years of experience working in the radio, television, and live performance mediums and holds an Extra Class radio license from the FCC as well as Certified Broadcast Technologist certification.

Kay Tappan

  • Adjunct
  • Department: Communication
  • phone8504742874
  • emailktappan@uwf.edu
  • Office Location: Building 36, Room 137
  • Short Bio: Kay Tappan earned her Bachelor of Arts in English from UWF in 2005 and a Master of Arts in mass communication from the University of Florida in 2011. She was a lecturer in the Department of Public Relations at the University of Florida College of Journalism and Communications for six years before returning to her hometown of Pensacola. At UF, she focused her teaching on visual communication. She has also taught courses in public relations strategy and communication for social change.

Suzanne Tuzzeo

  • Adjunct
  • Department: Communication
  • phone8504742874
  • emailstuzzeo@uwf.edu
  • Office Location: Building 36, Room 137
  • Short Bio: Suzanne earned her Bachelor of Arts in journalism with a minor in advertising from the University of Central Florida and a Master of Arts in interdisciplinary humanities, emphasis in film and English, from the University of West Florida. Suzanne owned and operated a full-service, award-winning advertising agency in Pensacola for more than 20 years and has brought that hands-on experience to the classroom for the past 18 years.

Dewey Ware

  • Adjunct
  • Department: Communication
  • phone8504742874
  • emaildware1@uwf.edu
  • Office Location: Building 36, Room 137
  • Short Bio: Dewey Ware spent 20 years the advertising agency business and ten years in the finance field.

David Zimmerman

  • Adjunct
  • Department: Communication
  • phone8504742874
  • emaildzimmerman@uwf.edu
  • Office Location: Building 36, Room 137
  • Courses: David Zimmerman has been teaching Graphic Design, Intro to Computer Graphics, and Business Communications since 2003.
  • Short Bio: Since earning his degree in communications/advertising from UWF, Zimmerman has worked as the marketing director for All Pro Sound and the Building Industry Association of West Florida. He has freelanced for Coca-Cola, Reading is Fundamental, and Advantage Credit. He is Past President of the West Florida Advertising Federation and served on the Florida Advertising Association's 4th District board of directors.