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Four Alumni Selected for WTAMU Communication Hall of Fame

Aug. 28, 2014

CONTACT:    Dr. Trudy Hanson, 806-651-2800, thanson@wtamu.edu

Four Alumni Selected for WTAMU Communication Hall of Fame

CANYON, Texas—Four graduates of West Texas A&M University’s Department of Communication have been selected as 2014 inductees to the Communication Hall of Fame and will be honored at a special event at 6 p.m. Oct. 10 at the Jack B. Kelley Student Center, Legacy Hall on campus.

The 2014 inductees are Gary Beagle, president and CEO for Beagle, Burke & Associates; Steve Cornett, editor emeritus of the Farm Journal; Dr. Andy Mangum, senior minister of the First Christian Church in Arlington; and Lisa Schmidt-Johnson, news anchor at KVII TV, Pronews 7 in Amarillo. The four inductees will be honored with brief photo documentaries of their work at the October event.

The criteria for nominations to the Communication Hall of Fame include being a graduate of WTAMU’s communication studies or mass communication programs, having worked in the professional field for a minimum of five years, making substantial contributions to the profession and having active community involvement.

Gary Beagle

Gary Beagle competed in debate as a member of WTSU’s speech team and graduated in 1978 with a B.S. in social work and speech communication. Beagle’s company, Beagle, Burke & Associate, is an organization which provides guardian services for elderly individuals and others unable to care for themselves. The company, headquartered in Portland, Ore., with a satellite office in Vancouver, Wash., has a staff of more than 50. Beagle is a member of the National Guardian Association and the Center for Guardianship Certification and has served as president of the Center in 2007. He is a member of the National Committee for Prevention of Elder Abuse, the California Professional Fiduciary Task Force and chairs the Communication on Aging for the Clark County Board of Commissioners.

Steve Cornett worSteve Cornettked for the Amarillo Globe-News before graduating from WTSU in 1973 with a B.S. in journalism. He has worked for the Colorado Springs Gazette Telegram; served as agriculture editor for the Wichita Eagle Beacon and as editor of the Kansas Farmer Stockman Magazine. His lengthy career included positions as editor at Drover’s Journal, BEEF Magazine and Farm Journal’s Beef Today. The recently retired Cornett was named Editor Emeritus at Farm Journal, where he continues to consult and write occasional pieces. During his distinguished career, Cornett received many writing awards from the Livestock Publications Council and the American Ag Editors Association. He credits WT journalism professor Bill Lee for giving him a firm foundation for a successful career. He and his wife, Kathy, have two grown children.

Andy Mangum serves as the senior minister of the First Christian Church in Arlington. He was a member of the forensics team at WT and earned two degrees—a B.A. in speech Andy Mangumcommunication in 1992 and a M.A. in communication in 1994. He also earned a Master of Divinity at Brite Divinity School and his doctorate in ministry from Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary. While ministerial duties are his main focus, Mangum also has been a part-time instructor at a several colleges—Amarillo College, Tarrant County College, Weatherford College and Dallas Baptist University—since 1995 and is currently an adjunct speech instructor at Brookhaven College. His community outreach in Arlington is noteworthy. He initiated a four-day MLK celebration and discussion of civil rights issues in 2011 and continues to find ways to build bridges between various groups in his community. Mangum is a frequent keynote speaker for area camps and men’s retreats. He and his wife, Lori are the parents of three children. Their daughter, Madison is currently completing a double major at WTAMU in communication studies and psychology.

Lisa Schmidt is the anchor for KVII Pronews 7 in Amarillo. As a student at WT, she made her first appearance on KVII in 1999 as a spokespersonLisa Schmidt for “The WB at WT” a series of commercial spoofs promoting the University. That taste of television had her hooked and after she earned a B.A. in mass communication/broadcasting in 2001, she joined KVII full time. Schmidt worked her way from one end of the station to the other—producing, reporting, anchoring and even working behind the scenes as creative director. Schmidt serves as a board member for the National MS Society, devoting many hours to fund raising for the MS Society. She also volunteers with the American Heart Association, the Amarillo Education Foundation and the Texas Panhandle Heritage Foundation. At Pronews 7, Schmidt produces a segment called “The Practicing Parent,” which offers parenting tips and advice. She is a frequent visitor to the WTAMU campus and often provides critiques for students in the News One course, a student-run newscast in the Department of Communication. Lisa and her husband Rick are the parents of two children, Miller and Leah.

The Communication Hall of Fame Selection Committee for the 2014 nominees was comprised of six communication professionals—Keith Brown, Opportunity Plan; Mary Coyne, McCormick Advertising; Larry Lemmons, KVII-TV; Jackie Kingston, KAMR-TV, Jacob Albracht, KWCH-TV, and Michele McAffery, AGN Media. 

For more information about the Communication Hall of Fame Banquet, visit wtamu.edu/comm-hall-of-fame or call Dr. Trudy Hanson at 806-651-2800 or email thanson@wtamu.edu  All proceeds from the banquet will support communication studies and mass communication student activities and scholarships at WTAMU.
 

—WTAMU—


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