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News Release

Office of the Dean                                                     


Karen Roberts

Special Projects Coordinator





WASHINGTON, D.C.  January 5, 2011 – Dean Jannette L. Dates and the School of Communications (SOC) will celebrate the school’s 5th Annual Legacy Day, commemorating the legacies of leading entrepreneurs such as John H. Johnson, Cathy Hughes, and Earl Graves for their defining spirits and legacies of excellence in communications businesses. This year’s keynote speaker, Sheila Brooks, founder and CEO of SRB Communications is also the school’s Entrepreneur in Residence. The event will be held at Howard University’s Founders Library, 500 Howard Place, NW Washington, DC, on Thursday January 27, 2011 from 2:30pm – 5:00pm. Legacy Day is a part of the School of Communications’ ongoing 40th Anniversary celebrations for this academic year.


This year’s theme, “Celebrating 40 Years of Excellence, allows us to “recognize the entrepreneurial spirit and outstanding contributions of those in media and communications whose work parallels the 40 years in which the school has sent alumni into their fields,” says Dean Dates. “Legacy Day salutes communication and industry leaders and encourages a similar spirit of creativity and pioneering business acumen among our student body.”


This year’s program includes the annual “Business Plan Challenge” that is open to all SOC students. Cash prizes from $1500-$500 are awarded for the three best business plans of the year.


Keynote speaker, Sheila Brooks, is an Emmy-award winning journalist, entrepreneur and advocate for minority and women’s issues and small businesses.  SRB Communications, a full-service media and communications agency and post-production facility in Washington DC., has been in business for 20 years and offers advertising, marketing, public relations campaigns along with post-production services for a range of clients. Brooks has garnered several entrepreneurial awards including the 2009 Black Rose Entrepreneur Award.  She serves on the Advisory Boards of Capital One Bank, the Women’s Leadership Exchange, Women in Film and Video and the Center for Women’s Business Research.


Each month, throughout the school year there will be opportunities for staff, faculty and supporters of the SOC to hear from industry leaders and media entrepreneurs in the various arenas of communications. Please note the following calendar of activities for 2011:


January 27, 2011 Legacy Day-CEO Sheila Brooks - SRB Communications
February 3, 2011 Michelle Bosch – VP & GM - Enterprise Rent A Car
March 10, 2011 Vera Katz ­– Professor Emerita - Dept. of Theatre, HU
March 24, 2011 Stan Verrett – Anchor, ESPN Sportscenter
April 21, 2011 Global Visionaries Awards –Honorees: Constance Cannon Frazier (American Advertising Federation), Kellie Coleman (GlobalHue), Frankie Hughes (Hughes Capital Management), and Sheila Eldridge (Miles Ahead Entertainment)
April 28, 2011 A Legacy Tribute: Featuring Tom Burrell - Time Warner Center, NYC


About the School of Communications

The Howard University School of Communications has produced many outstanding professionals in communications including: Michelle Miller, correspondent, CBS News; Keisha N. Brown, senior vice president & general manager, LAGRANT Foundation; Depelsha McGruder-Thomas, senior vice president, Business Operations & Strategy, MTV Networks; Genelle Niblack, vice president, Clear Channel Radio Sales;  Constance Cannon Frazier, Chief Operating Officer, American Advertising Federation (AAF); Fredricka Whitfield, CNN news anchor; Isabel Wilkerson, Pulitzer Prize winning journalist formerly at The New York Times; and Lesli Foster, news anchor at WUSA, Channel  9.  For more information on the SOC, call 202-806-7690, or visit the website at


The SOC has become one of the fastest growing schools among Howard University‘s 12 academic schools and colleges.  In 2010, PRWeek magazine named the Department of Journalism as one of the top five in the nation for education in public relations, ABC News opened a student news bureau on campus this fall, and SOC students have received White House Correspondents’ Association Scholarships for four years in a row.  In addition, the National Association of Black Journalists recognized Howard University as the number one JMC program among HBCU’s and the number one student chapter and recently senior print major Phillip Lucas as the Student Journalists of the Year. 


During the recent annual convention of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA), three School of Communications faculty members; Joan Payne, Kay Payne and Orlando Taylor from the Department of Communication Sciences & Disorders were recognized as Diversity Champions for their contributions in the area of multiculturalism. The speech-language pathology master’s degree program is among the top –ranked graduate programs in the nation as cited in U.S.News and World Report’s America’s Best Graduates Schools, 2010 and the master’s degree SLP program was ranked in the top third of 230 programs.


The nationally recognized Martin Luther King, Jr. Forensics Program is housed in the Department of Communication and Culture, where students learn to compete against the best collegiate teams in the nation in the areas of mock trial, debate, and oratorical competitions. For the past three years their teams have competed annually against the Yale Debate team to an audience of more than 3000 each year. This year the exhibition debate will take place on the Howard University campus.


The department of Radio/TV/Film is one of the largest producers of African American communications graduates in the country. Within the major, students may choose to specialize in audio production, film, telecommunications management or television production. The department’s award-winning faculty members include Peabody award winners, Emmy award winners and numerous others.  Professors in the department continue to produce nationally and internationally recognized books, book chapters, scholarly papers, narrative films and documentaries – all while they maintain their commitment to nurturing the next generation of media professionals. In addition to external internships, students are encouraged to become active with various media outlets on campus, including one of the regions’s top-rated commercial radio stations - WHUR-FM; PBS affiliate WHUT-TV; student-run WHBC-AM, and the departments’ Internet talk radio station,


For more information on the School of Communications, call 202-806-7690, or visit the website at


About Howard University

Howard University is a private, research university that is comprised of 12 schools and colleges.

Founded in 1867, students pursue studies in more than 120 areas leading to undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees. Since 1998, the University has produced two Rhodes Scholars, a Truman Scholar, aMarshall Scholar, 19 Fulbright Scholars and 11 Pickering Fellows. Howard also produces more on campus African-American Ph.D. recipients than any other university in the United States. For more information on Howard University, call 202-238-2330, or visit the University’s Web site at
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