IPR is featuring some of the many Asian American Pacific Islander pioneers who impacted the field of public relations in celebration of AAPI Heritage Month.

Bey-Ling Sha, Ph.D., APR, is serving as the Dean of the College of Communications at California State University, Fullerton. Her work has influenced public relations scholarship, education, and practice. She earned her Ph.D. in mass communication from the University of Maryland, College Park.

Dr. Sha worked as a public affairs officer for the U.S. Census Bureau, prior to becoming a full-time educator. She helped oversee the execution and evaluation of the promotional campaign for the 2000 census, which won a 2001 Silver Anvil Award of Excellence from the Public Relations Society of America.

Dr. Sha’s primary research program examines the intersection of identity and public relations. Dr. Sha is a pioneer in public relations and has been the first Asian, Pacific Islander, or Desi American (APIDA) to win numerous awards and achievements including:
–First APIDA to win PRSA Outstanding Educator of the Year
–First APIDA to author/co-author a major public relations textbook
–First APIDA to serve as the Director of the San Diego State University School of Journalism and Media Studies
–First APIDA to chair the Universal Accreditation Board, overseeing professional accreditation in public relations
–First APIDA to serve as editor of the Journal of Public Relations Research
–First APIDA female to win the IPR Pathfinder Award for lifetime achievement in research
–First APIDA Dean, CSUF College of Communications

In 2019, Dr. Sha was honored by the Public Relations Society of America with its D. Parke Gibson Pioneer Award, which is the society’s “highest individual honor presented to a PR professional who has contributed to increased awareness of public relations within multicultural communities and has participated in promoting issues that meet the needs of these diverse communities.”

Dr. Sha continues to contribute exceptional scholarship, innovation, and service to the public relations field.

References
Dr. Bey-Ling Sha Faculty Biography
California State University, Fullerton, College of Communications

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Heidy Modarelli handles Growth & Marketing for IPR. She has previously written for Entrepreneur, TechCrunch, The Next Web, and VentureBeat.
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