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by Kalamalama staff

According to Campbell, it took an extraordinary opportunity to pull him back to the mainland. He got an offer he couldn’t refuse, he said: an endowed research chair at the University of Michigan. It offered him an opportunity to further pursue his research into the impacts on individuals and society of new and emerging communication tools, particularly the cellular phone and related technologies. Sparr will teach at Michigan as well.

Dr. Steven C. Combs joins the communications faculty at HPU after spending 12 years at Loyola Marymount University, where he received numerous teaching awards, was thrice honored by the Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers (2000, 2004, 2005), and was twice recognized in the International Directory of Distinguished Leadership (2000, 2001).

Combs will join HPU in the spring. He taught at Oxford University this summer and will spend the fall semester as a visiting professor at Tsuda College in Tokyo, Japan. He has an M.A. from the University of Kansas, and a B.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Southern California (USC).
Combs has a broad background in communication studies and specializes in rhetorical theory and criticism. He has presented scholarly papers on three continents and published in top, peer-reviewed journals such as the Quarterly Journal of Speech, Social Semiotics, and Argumentation and Advocacy. He was a recent special editor for a groundbreaking issue of Argumentation and Advocacy devoted to non-Greco Roman argumentation and has a newly published book on the subject, The Dao of Rhetoric. He serves on the editorial board of two communication journals and was recently selected to the Executive Finance Committee of the American Forensic Association.
Combs is able to draw from his background as an intercollegiate debater. He set and still holds the record for most victories in a college career, and he placed second nationally two years in a row. He enjoys softball and bodysurfing.

Dr. Raymond Abelin’s professional qualifications and academic credentials reflect interests that span the scientific, business, and entertainment areas of communication. After graduating from Beverly Hills High School, he began his career in Hollywood’s entertainment industry in the 1970s, animating the Speed Buggy, Jeanie, and original Scooby Doo series for Hanna Barbera Productions. He was then the company’s youngest animator.

Realizing early on that the university is a primary contributor to the developmental process of creative communication, Abelin enrolled in UCLA’s School of Film and Television and earned the B.A. Magna cum Laude in 1978. In 1979, he enrolled in USC’s School of Cinema and earned an M.A. in Production in 1983. He believes he is the first person ever to graduate from both UCLA and USC production programs.

Abelin returned to the industry as a writer/director, and in 1984 his work gained him acceptance into the Director’s Guild of America. His sponsor was Richard Donner, director of Lethal Weapon and Superman. In 1987, during the first and only industry-wide strike in the union’s history, Arthur Hiller, president of the DGA and later president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, selected Abelin as a negotiator on the DGA’s Creative Rights Negotiating Committee and helped develop the successful Guild agreement with the heads of the major studios.

In 1997, after nearly a decade of computer technologies transforming production and post-production, Abelin became the first from the Hollywood filmmaking community to be accepted into Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design. He did a pioneering investigation linking narrative design, 3D animation, and the development of digital cinema, and he received a Master of Design Studies from Harvard in 1998.

With Web-based communication becoming a global phenomenon, Abelin, in 2000, enrolled in Cambridge University’s Judge Institute of Management in 2000. At Cambridge he completed an M.B.A. in Global Communications Management and emergent media technologies and was one of the principal developers of Cambridge University’s first distance-learning initiative, done in collaboration with Great Britain’s Open University.

While in the United Kingdom, through the Judge Institute of Management, Abelin also did a major consulting project with the British Broadcasting Company, examining digital media education and commerce.
In 2003, Abelin completed work for the Ph.D. at the University of Colorado with dissertation research accomplished through Emmanuel College, Cambridge. Subsequently, Abelin became chair of Visual Communication and the Founding Chair of Media Studies at American Intercontinental University, in Los Angeles, before joining HPU.

Dr. Penny Pence Smith joins the communication faculty as an assistant professor in public relations this fall. She is a veteran marketing professional with a current specialization in health care and medical practices.

In the past three years, she has guided the strategic marketing for many health-related organizations in North Carolina, including Wake Radiology, The Aesthetic Institute of North Carolina, The North Carolina Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention Task Force, and The North Carolina Committee for Cancer Coordination and Control.

Smith has also conducted numerous marketing workshops for organizations such as the American College of Radiology, the American Association of Nurse Anesthetists, and the American College of Radiology. She served as co-chair of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Festival of Women’s Health, a 2,500-square-foot health-education event at the U.S. Women’s Open Championship in Pinehurst, N.C. Previously, she developed marketing plans and strategies for an urgent-care clinic in Honolulu, several insurance companies, and a developer of nursing homes.

Smith has held a variety of executive positions in the marketing and communication industries. She was a national director of Corporate Communication for Grubb & Ellis, one of the two largest U.S. commercial real estate companies. She has also been marketing manager of several high technology companies; an account executive and supervisor for several advertising agencies, including J. Walter Thompson Company; and founder and CEO of Smith & Shows, a high technology public relations agency located in Menlo Park, Calif.

In addition to her work as a marketing and management consultant, Smith is also a successful journalist, with 10 years as a newspaper correspondent covering the entertainment industry. From 1971-1975 she served as Bureau Manager for the New York Times Special Features Syndicate in Los Angeles, and she has authored two successful books on Hawai‘i.

Smith holds a Ph.D. in Mass Communication Research from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, with an emphasis on health communication. She earned an M.A. in Communication Management from the Annenberg School at USC and a B.A. in Communications from the University of Washington. She has taught marketing strategy for health care providers at the UNC School of Public Health, Continuing Education Division.

Minjeong Kim recently earned her Ph.D. in Journalism and Mass Communication from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. A native Korean, Kim has an M.A. in Journalism and Mass Communication, also from UNC; an M.A. in International Communication from Hankuk University of Foreign Studies in Seoul, South Korea; and a B.A. in English from Hankuk Imoversotu.
A new assistant professor in the College of Communication, Kim’s primary research interests are media law and new media. She is particularly interested in First Amendment issues in cyberspace. Her master’s thesis examined online anonymity, and her doctoral dissertation explored copyright issues in the digital age.

Kim offers HPU’s College of Communication proficiency in quantitative research methods. Her professors at UNC have described her as a “media law major who also understands numbers.” She has presented numerous papers at academic conferences, including a second place student paper presented to the Law Division at the 2004 AEJMC Convention (Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication). She has co-authored several articles published in academic journals in the United States and in Korea, and while working on her doctorate at UNC won the John B. Adams Award for Excellence in Mass Communication Law and the Minnie S. and Eli A. Rubinstein Research Award.

Kim says she loves traveling around the world learning new things and meeting new people.
Lew Trusty has been capturing the natural world on film since the day he was big enough to hold a camera. While working on an underwater documentary at USC film school, he found that he enjoyed the challenge of underwater visual communication and became one of the pioneers exploring and refining specialized optics and lighting for underwater filming and photography. This gained him a reputation as one of the country’s preeminent underwater cameramen and videographers.
Trusty has owned and operated his own production studio in California and Hawai’i, and he has filmed for companies such as Disney, National Geographic, Time-Life, Animals-Animals, the National Wildlife Federation, ESPN, and Baywatch Hawai‘i.

In recognition for his documentary films, Trusty has received numerous awards including the Cine Golden Eagle, Gold and Bronze Cindy’s, the Silver Anchor at the Toulon France Maritime Film Festival, and the Silver Medal from Downunder Australia.

For print media, Trusty has written and produced articles for major publications in dozens of magazines and periodicals including National Geographic World, Time Life, Oceans, and the New York Times. In addition, numerous publishers have used his remarkable still photography, including Addison Wesley, Beka Books, Harcourt Brace Jovanovitch, Houghton Mifflin, MacMillan, and many more.

Trusty spends his free time traveling, usually with cases of cameras. In Hawai‘i he enjoys paddling outrigger canoes and has competed in the Molokai channel race twice. He is a Deacon at Central Union Church and a member of The Hawai‘i International Film Festival (HIFF), the Film and Video Association of Hawai‘i (FAVAH), and the International Association of Audio Visual Communicators (IAAVC).



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