Dr. Donna Lampkin Stephens

Dr. Donna Lampkin Stephens, interim director of the School of Communication, will serve as the first vice president of the American Journalism Historians Association for 2018-19. Officers were selected and announced during the organization’s 37th annual convention in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Stephens was elected second vice president at the Little Rock conference last year. She will become president of the organization for 2019-20 during the Dallas conference next year.

Stephens was a sportswriter for the Arkansas Gazette from 1984 until the newspaper died on Oct. 18, 1991. Since then, she has been a freelance writer for numerous Arkansas publications. She produced the documentary films “The Old Gray Lady: Arkansas’s First Newspaper” (2006), which tells the history of the Arkansas Gazette; and “The Crisis Mr. Faubus Made: The Role of the Arkansas Gazette in the Central High Crisis” (2010).

Her dissertation from the University of Southern Mississippi, “’If It Ain’t Broke, Break It’: How Corporate Journalism Killed the Arkansas Gazette” won an honorable mention in the American Journalism Historians Association’s 2013 Margaret A. Blanchard Dissertation Prize contest and was published by the University of Arkansas Press in 2015.

Founded in 1981, the American Journalism Historians Association seeks to advance education and research in mass communication history. Members work to raise historical standards and ensure that all scholars and students recognize the vast importance of media history and apply this knowledge to the advancement of society. For more information, visit