Dr. Zifei Fay Chen (Ph.D., University of Miami) is a tenured associate professor in the Communication Studies Department at the University of San Francisco (USF) where she oversees the Public Relations Minor program. Dr. Chen has over 10 years of experience working in public relations. Prior to starting her research and teaching career in public relations in 2014, she worked in the capacity of marketing communications (2013-2014). She has also worked at Ketchum Global Research & Analytics in 2015 as a research fellow and recipient of the Don Bartholomew Award for Excellence in Public Relations Research sponsored by IPR and Ketchum. 

Dr. Chen’s research areas include corporate social responsibility and advocacy, startup and entrepreneurial communication, digital communication, and prosocial communication. A prolific and well-established scholar, Dr. Chen has produced over 35 refereed journal articles, book chapters, and books. She has received top paper awards at national and international conferences, and her work has been published in leading refereed journals including the Journal of Public Relations Research, Public Relations Review, and New Media and Society. Dr. Chen has also received multiple grants for her studies, including the competitive University of San Francisco CRASE Interdisciplinary Action Group Grant (2021), the Arthur W. Page Center Legacy Scholar Grant (2017, 2023), and the Waterhouse Family Institute Research Grant (2023). 

Dr. Chen’s contribution to public relations education is evident in the development of the Public Relations Minor program at USF and the multiple awards she has received. During her tenure at USF, she has revamped the public relations minor curriculum and invigorated the program. Despite the overall challenges with enrollment, the enrollment of Public Relations Minor has steadily grown from 17 to 49. She has invited over 50 industry guest speakers to provide real-world insights and networking opportunities for her students. She is the founding faculty adviser for the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) Chapter at USF. Dr.Chen is the recipient of the prestigious Innovation in Teaching with Technology Award and the Sarlo Prize for Excellence in Teaching Award at USF. 

In the public relations educators’ and professional communities, Dr. Chen serves on the editorial boards for the Journal of Public Relations Research, Public Relations Review, and Public Relations Journal. She is a board member the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) San Francisco Bay Area Chapter, advisory committee member for the International Public Relations Research Conference (IPRRC), and chair for “great ideas for teaching” brief and teaching competition committee at the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (AEJMC) Public Relations Division.