Faculty and Staff


  • Picture of Dr Kenneth S Zagacki

    Zagacki, Dr Kenneth S

    Department Head


    Ken Zagacki is a Professor of Communication and Head of the Department of Communication at NC State University. His research includes the study of presidential speeches about American foreign policy, the rhetoric of scientific argumentation, the rhetorical dimensions of visual communication, and the relationship between philosophy and rhetoric. He has published numerous articles in major scholarly journals, including the Quarterly Journal of Speech, Philosophy & Rhetoric, and Rhetoric & Public Affairs

    Ken joined the faculty at NC State in August 2001, before which he was an associate Professor in the Department of Communication Studies at Louisiana State University

  • Picture of Cynthia Zuckerman Hyman

    Zuckerman Hyman, Cynthia

    Undergraduate Head of Advising


    Ms. Zuckerman-Hyman has been with the department since 2001. She has been advising since 2011, and was named Director of Undergraduate Advising in 2015. Her research interests include the communication of a stigmatized self, the social construction of identity and its implication for policy, and narrative frames around education and education policy.

    If you would like to make an appointment, please go the advising calendar: http://bit.ly/1PLRX4t

    If you are on the East Coast: Please make sure you have set your calendar time-zone setting to Eastern Standard Time (EST) in order for the appointment availability to properly display.

  • Picture of Dr Elizabeth Atwood Nelson

    Nelson, Dr Elizabeth Atwood

    COM 110 Director
  • Picture of Dr Nicholas Thiel Taylor

    Taylor, Dr Nicholas Thiel

    Assistant Director of CRDM Ph.D. Program


    I am honored to join the Department of Communication at North Carolina State University as Assistant Professor of Digital Media. Prior to joining NC State, I worked as as a post-doctoral fellow on the Virtual Environments Real User Study (VERUS). VERUS, led by SRI International, was a multi-site, interdisciplinary research program sponsored by the US government. It involved an innovative and collaborative mixture of qualitative and quantitative approaches, applied to the study of connections between avatars in virtual environments such as World of Warcraft and Second Life, and their real world users.

  • Picture of Andrew R. Binder

    Binder, Andrew R.

    Director of Graduate Programs


    Andrew R. Binder (Ph.D., 2010, University of Wisconsin-Madison) is an Associate Professor and Director of Graduate Programs in the Department of Communication at North Carolina State University. He conducts research on controversial science topics, including how information about those topics is transmitted through various communication channels and what impact that communication has on risk perception and public understanding of science.

  • Picture of Dr Ryan J. Hurley

    Hurley, Dr Ryan J.

    Director of Undergraduate Affairs


    Ryan J. Hurley is originally from Minnesota, where he completed his BA at Concordia College in Communication. He attended Kansas State University for his MS degree, before moving to Illinois to complete his PhD in Communication at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

    Dr. Hurley spent year at Wake Forest University as a Visiting Assistant Professor before joining the Department of Communication here at NC State.

  • Picture of Dr Melissa A Johnson

    Johnson, Dr Melissa A

    Director: Graduate Certificate in Professional Com Program


    Melissa A. Johnson is a Professor in the Department of Communication, where she has taught since 1994. Dr. Johnson’s research explores international communication and ethnicity-related concepts in traditional media, digital media, and public relations. Of particular interest is the role of visual communication in international news. A current stream of research examines the role of ethnic museums and cultural centers in building relationships among various cultural groups in urban settings. Dr. Johnson teaches classes in the networked society, international and intercultural communication, research methods, and public relations. She holds a doctorate in mass communication research from the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill.

  • Picture of Dr Joann Keyton

    Keyton, Dr Joann

    Graduate Internship Program Coordinator


    Joann Keyton (Ph.D., The Ohio State University, 1987) is Professor of Communication at North Carolina State University. In addition to publications in scholarly journals and edited collections, she has published three textbooks for courses in group communication, research methods, and organizational culture in addition to co-editing an organizational communication case book. Keyton was editor of the Journal of Applied Communication Research, Volumes 31-33, and the founding editor of Communication Currents, Volumes 1-5. Currently, she is Editor of Small Group Research. She is a founder of the Interdisciplinary Network for Group Research.

  • Picture of Dean Simpson Phillips

    Phillips, Dean Simpson

    Undergraduate Internship Program Coordinator


    Dean Phillips is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Communication. He joined the faculty in 2001 and teaches courses in public relations and media.

    After graduating with a B.S. in Business Administration from George Mason University, Phillips went on to study communication at the University of Maryland. Following his studies, he had a career of more 20 years as television newscaster. After leaving television, Phillips began a career as a public relations and media relations consultant for corporate and political clients. 



Associate Professor

Assistant Professor

Teaching Assistant Professor

Teaching Assistant Professor

Senior Lecturer


Lecturer / Undergraduate Advisor


Professor Emeritus

Associate Professor

Associate Professor Emeritus

Assistant Professor Emeritus

Emeritus Lecturer

Lecturer Emeritus


Business Services Coordinator

Graduate Services Coordinator

Media Lab Technician

Student Assistant to Dr. Craig

Temp Admin / Offc Suppt Staff

Temp Non NCSU Student

Undergraduate Services Coordinator