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RU Hires Jeffrey Douglas as New Chief Communications Officer

RADFORD – Radford University has hired a public relations veteran – and one of its own – as its new chief communications officer and executive director of university relations.

Jeffrey S. Douglas, currently director of the office of public relations and communications at the Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine at Virginia Tech, will assume the post on Aug. 17.

Jeffrey DouglasDouglas received both his undergraduate and graduate degrees from Radford University: a bachelor’s degree in journalism in 1977, and a master’s degree in corporate and professional communications in 1999.

“Virginia Tech has been a great experience, but Radford is a natural fit for me,” said Douglas. “I know its history. I know what’s been accomplished in just a few short years. And I know it has a bright and promising future. I’m extremely excited by this opportunity to serve an institution that has played a very significant role in my life.”

Douglas has worked in the public relations office of the Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine since 1983 – first as public relations manager and, starting in 1992, as director. During his tenure, he handled media and governmental relations, fundraising communications, special events, as well as development and management of all strategic relationships with the stakeholder groups that comprise the three-campus interstate school. He was also a member of the Virginia Tech Crisis Communications Team. From 1977 to 1981 he worked as assistant director of news in Radford University’s public relations office.

"Jeff is an experienced and expert senior communicator who will bring a deep -seated passion and professionalism to Radford University," said Larry Hincker, associate vice-president for university relations at Virginia Tech. "Our loss is his alma mater's gain."

Douglas earned his professional certification from the Public Relations Society of America in 1994 and was inducted into PRSA’s College of Fellows in 2004. Douglas helped found, and served as president of, the Blue Ridge chapter of PRSA and also served as president of the National Association of Veterinary Advancement Professionals. He has also taught several communications classes at both Radford University and Virginia Tech.

“Not only is Jeff Douglas a seasoned public relations executive, he is someone who shares a true love for Radford University’s history and future,” said RU President Penelope W. Kyle. “I am thrilled to have him join our team as we look to better engage and inspire our university community and launch our Centennial celebration in the coming year.”

Douglas’ responsibilities will include:

  • Providing strategic communications counsel to the university administration;
  • Promoting the accomplishments of university faculty, students and staff in local, state and national media;
  • Serving as university spokesman;
  • Developing all external and internal campus branding, advertising and marketing initiatives;
  • Directing the office of university relations, which provides print, editorial, web, graphic design, photography, video and radio services to the university as well as electronic and print publications including RU Today, The Magazine of Radford University, and Radford Alumni e-News.

July 29, 2009
Contact: Michael Hemphill (mhemphill@radford.edu; 540-831-5803)

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