Professors Ruth Brown and Kathryn Christensen to retire

Wednesday, May 4, 2016 - 2:15pm

University of Nebraska–Lincoln College of Journalism & Mass Communications professors Ruth Brown, Ph.D., and Kathryn Christensen are retiring at the end of the academic year.

The CoJMC will host a joint retirement reception for the professors from 3:30-4:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 4 in the Andersen Hall Hitchcock Center. The reception is free and open to faculty, staff, alumni and students.

“On behalf of the faculty, staff and students at the College of Journalism and Mass Communications I want to extend my heartfelt congratulations to both these amazing professors,” Dean Maria Marron said. “It has been an honor and a privilege to work with Brown and Christensen, and I know they will be missed at Andersen Hall.”

Brown, professor of advertising and public relations, taught classes in research, strategy and writing, as well as graduate courses. She was an associate professor at a sister institution—UNK--where she taught for 15 years before joining the CoJMC in 2008.

She is a proponent of distance education. Her research on “The Process of Community Building in Distance Learning Classes” was first published in 2001 and has since been cited in more than 460 articles.

Brown holds degrees in journalism and mass communications from University of Nebraska–Lincoln and Ohio University and received her doctorate from University of Nebraska–Lincoln in educational administration/curriculum and instruction with cognate classes in journalism.

Recognitions she has earned include: the top award for research presented in 2012 by the National Federation of Press Women; the Leader in Communication Award from Lincoln’s chapter of the International Association of Business Communicators in 2010; the Communicator of Achievement Award from the Nebraska Press Women in 2007; Outstanding Professor of the Year from The Order of Omega Honor Society in 2005; and awards from the American Advertising Federation for support of minority students in advertising.

Christensen, professor of practice, taught journalism classes in writing and reporting, as well as a graduate-level class in ethics and issues. She joined the CoJMC faculty in 2007.

Before joining academia, she spent most of her professional career at The Wall Street Journal and ABC News. While at the Wall Street Journal, she was a vice president of television, international vice president based in Hong Kong, senior editor and London bureau chief. She served on the board of CNBC Asia and CNBC Europe.

At ABC News, she held positions as managing editor, executive producer and senior producer/foreign for “World News Tonight with Peter Jennings” and executive producer of “Weekend News.” She was part of teams that won two Emmy awards.

She was also the managing editor The Baltimore Sun and has been a reporter for several other major daily newspapers. She is a graduate of University of Nebraska–Lincoln.

Ruth Brown and Kathryn Christensen
Ruth Brown and Kathryn Christensen