Ralitsa Vassileva, Kyser Lough and Lori Johnston are among the nine new faculty teaching at Grady College this year. (Candid photos: Sarah E. Freeman; Headshots: Sarah E. Freeman and Dayne Young)

Nine new Grady College faculty usher in 2019-2020 academic year

The start of the 2019-2020 academic year brings nine new faces to Grady College—one of the largest new faculty classes in recent history.

“One of the most important things we do as a college is hire wisely and well, and we’re thrilled with this year’s new faculty,” Charles N. Davis, dean of Grady College, said. “They represent a significant investment in the digital future, while also bringing years of experience in their fields. Our students will benefit from this group of new faculty for years to come.

Grady College is proud to welcome the following new full-time faculty:

Karin Assmann

Job title and Department: assistant professor, Journalism
Terminal Degree: Ph.D., University of Maryland
Teaches: video journalism and information gathering
Research Specialties: Newsroom sociology and the effects of audience engagement practices on journalists.
Before Grady: Karin Assmann is the former U.S. correspondent for Spiegel television and has written, reported and produced for radio, broadcast and online publications before turning to academia.
Read more about Dr. Karin Assmann



David Clementson

Job title and Department: assistant professor, ADPR
Terminal Degree: Ph.D., The Ohio State University
Teaches: public relations and campaigns classes
Research Specialties: studies how politicians and business spokespersons avoid interview questions and whether audiences notice.
Before Grady: David Clementson ran several successful political campaigns, worked as a journalist and was a director of communication and press secretary prior to turning to academics.
Read more about Dr. David Clementson


Tom Cullen (MA ’18)

Job title and Department: instructor, limited term, ADPR
Terminal Degree: MFA, University of Georgia (in progress)
Teaches: public relations communications
Before Grady: Tom Cullen is a familiar face since he was a part-time instructor last year. He also assists with the Yarbrough Crisis Communication Coalition internship.
Read more about Professor Tom Cullen



Matthew Evans

Job title and Department: assistant professor, Entertainment and Media Studies
Terminal Degree: MFA, Columbia University
Teaches: screenwriting for features, short films and television
Experience: Evans writes feature screenplays and is a member of the Writers Guild of America, West (WGA). He has written or developed film and television projects for numerous directors and producers, including Thomas Carter, Michelle Manning, Daniel Ragussis and Eric Christian Olsen.
Before Grady: Evans taught screenwriting courses at California State University, Fullerton (CSUF); Columbus College of Art and Design (CCAD); and New York Film Academy, Los Angeles (NYFA).
Read more about Professor Matthew Evans

Johnston, Lori

Lori Johnston (ABJ ’95, MFA ’17)

Job title and Department: lecturer, Journalism
Terminal Degree: MFA, University of Georgia
Teaches: reporting, investigative journalism and writing across platforms
Experience: Johnston is a former Associated Press writer and magazine editor. She is the co-founder of Fast Copy News Service, and has been published in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, The Washington Post and The Wall Street Journal, among others.
Before Grady: In addition to her freelance writing career, Lori Johnston taught at Grady College for several years as a part-time instructor.
Read more about Professor Lori Johnston


Kyser Lough

Job title and Department: assistant professor, Journalism
Terminal Degree: Ph.D., University of Texas at Austin
Teaches: photojournalism and graphics
Research Specialties: Lough researches visual communication and solutions journalism, especially how those topics are related to questions of power, access and boundaries.
Before Grady: Prior to pursuing his Ph.D., Dr. Lough spent 10 years as a photojournalist, reporter and public relations practitioner.
Read more about Dr. Kyser Lough


Garland McLaurin

Job title and Department: lecturer, Entertainment and Media Studies
Terminal Degree: MFA, New York University
Teaches: cinematography and documentary filmmaking
Experience: McLaurin is a Peabody Award-winning filmmaker, whose current projects include serving as creator, director and producer of “Pops,” a web series exploring fatherhood for African American men; and serving as co-director of “Family Pictures USA,” a limited series on PBS about the exploration of American towns through the lens of the family photo album.
Read more about Professor Garland McLaurin



Ralitsa Vassileva

Job title and Department: lecturer, Journalism
Terminal Degree: MA, Georgia State University/MA, University of Sofia, Bulgaria
Teaches: Newsource and multiplatform newsroom projects
Experience: Vassileva is a Peabody Award-winning journalist, who served as a CNN anchor & correspondent for more than 20 years. Vassileva grew up in Bulgaria and, as a young journalist helped introduce freedom of the press after the Berlin Wall fell. She speaks on topics including sustainability, women’s issues and digital change.
Read more about Professor Ralitsa Vassileva


Hye Jin Yoon (MA ’06, PhD 10)

Job title and Department: associate professor, ADPR
Terminal Degree: Ph.D., University of Georgia
Teaches: advertising and media planning
Research Specialties: Yoon’s research expertise is in humor advertising and humor psychology, with growing interest in sustainable marketing and advertising. Other research interests include health and environmental issues in advertising and their impact on consumers and society.
Read more about Dr. Hye Jin Yoon




Date: August 19, 2019
Author:  Sarah Freeman,  freemans@uga.edu