EPA member, journalism professor recognized with national award

The nation’s largest journalism adviser’s group has recognized a Palm Beach Atlantic University professor and EPA member with a significant award.

Michael Smith Award
College Media Advisers presented Professor Michael Ray Smith the CMA Noel Ross Strader Award for his work in the field since 1988. Smith spoke at the 2014 EPA convention in Anaheim, has served as an EPA contest judge, and involves his students in EPA contests and other endeavors.

The presentation of the award took place at the Hilton Austin Hotel, Association Collegiate Press/College Media Advisers National College Media Convention in Austin, Texas, on Oct. 29.

“A Christian heartbeat is alive and well in CMA thanks to so many outstanding members such as Doug Tarpley, Tim Morgan, Jim Dahlman, David Dixon, Michael Longinow, Paul Glader, Terry Mattingly, Michael Chute, Tamara Welter, Deborah Huff and supporters such at Tony Carnes, Lamar Keener, Les Sillars, Stephen Perry and many more,” Smith said. “We’re all glad to bring an EPA-influence to our other affiliations.”

The Noel Ross Strader Award perpetuates the work and memory of a longtime University of Houston professor/administrator in journalism. The award is made only when meritorious candidates are brought forth. To be eligible for this award the recipient must be a full-time teacher/adviser in campus journalism and must have exercised the principle of freedom of the press “at some risk to personal or professional welfare” or have made a “major contribution to the graphic or other physical progress of a campus publication.”

Sara Melinda Acosta, a graduate of Campbell University and once editor of the Campbell student newspaper, nominated Smith for the national award.

Smith spent a decade in mainstream newsrooms as a reporter, wire editor and religion editor, including a stint at Atlanta Journal-Constitution. He became a college educator in 1988 at Gordon College. He also taught and served as the student newspaper faculty adviser at Lycoming College, Taylor University, and Campbell University.

His freelance work includes articles published in World, Christianity Today, Baltimore Sun and Philadelphia Inquirer.

These days Smith advises Palm Beach Atlantic’s The Beacon and readmybeacon.com, which placed second in the 2015 EPA campus publication category. His “7 Days to a Byline that Pays” was just released.

He and his wife Barbara live in West Palm Beach. Their two daughters are grown and work in media; one as a freelance PR counselor in Eastern Tennessee and one in writing and translation in Paris, France.


Posted October 29, 2015