Brief Professional Biography


I studied Speech and Drama at Morningside College, and, after military service in Korea, received the bachelor's degree in these subjects in 1955. After teaching at Wayland High School, I entered the University of Iowa, receiving the M.A. and Ph. D. degrees. I taught briefly at Sacramento State, and then moved to Western Illinois and then Ohio University. In 1970 I came to the University of Kentucky, serving two terms as department chair, and a term as graduate director. In addition, I served a term as chair of the University Faculty Senate. My publications include books on public speaking, persuasion, listening, and communication research, and as editor of the Communication Yearbooks.

My research interests are diverse (eclectic), including articles on nominating speeches, speech education, persuasion, language, and listening. I have also has published in other disciplines occasionally, notably the APA and the Association for American Humanists. I has been involved in assessment for the Educational Testing Service for the last fifteen years. My major contribution has been work on their listening test, but I have also worked with the Speech Communication content examination and the Graduate Management Assessment Test. I am currently working with ETS in a new version of the DANTES public assessment project.

In 1998, the Alumni Association of the University of Kentucky awarded me the "great teacher" award.

I am a member of the NCA, serving on the nominating committee, the legislative council, and as an associate editor of almost all of its scholarly publications. I was the first chair of the Interpersonal and Small Group division. In the Southern Communication Association, I served on a variety of committees, and was elected president in 1986. The "Bostrom Young Scholars" award at Southern is jointly sponsored by the University of Kentucky and the Ashland Oil Corporation.