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The James C. Bowling Executive-In-Residence Lecture Series was established through a generous endowment from Joseph M. Cullman 3rd, retired chairman of the board at Philip Morris.

As part of the series, a nationally recognized public relations professional visits the UK campus each year. The professional's activities on campus with students, faculty and administrators culminate in a reception and lecture on campus.

This program also includes the Excellence in Public Relations Award, given to an outstanding public relations practitioner with ties to Kentucky, and a scholarship for a public relations student.

  • 2023 Erin Rolfes, The Kroger Co. 
  • 2022 Shawn Hils, National Basketball Association
  • 2021 Linda Rutherford, Southwest Airlines
  • 2020 Michele Anderson, Edelman
  • 2019 Roger Bolton, Arthur W. Page Society
  • 2018 Denise Kaufmann, Ketchum
  • 2017 Phil Lynch, Brown-Forman Corporation
  • 2016 Torod B. Neptune, Verizon Communications, Inc.
  • 2015 Deborah Radman, Radman Communications
  • 2014: Richard Edelman, Edelman, Inc.
  • 2013 Tamera Luzzato, The Pew Charitable Trusts
  • 2012: Jonathan Blum, Yum! Brands
  • 2011: Miguel Salinas, Adobe Foundation
  • 2010: Willard “Bill”Nielsen, Johnson & Johnson
  • 2009 Valerie Di Maria, Peppercom
  • 2008 Peter Debreceny, Allstate
  • 2007 Kenneth Sternad, United Parcel Service
  • 2006 Christopher Simpson, SimpsonScarborough
  • 2005 Ginger Hardage, Southwest Airlines
  • 2004 Betsy Plank, Ameritech
  • 2003 Daniel J. Edelman, Daniel J. Edelman, Inc.
  • 2002 Richard H. Truitt, Truitt Partners LLC
  • 2001 Fraser P. Seitel, Emerald Partners
  • 2000 Harold Burson, Burson Marsteller

  • 2023 Lisa Deffendall, Fayette County Public Schools
  • 2022 Chip Polston, Kentucky Educational Television
  • 2021 Susan Straub, Lexington Mayor's Office
  • 2020 No award given
  • 2019 Barbara McDaniel, Toyota
  • 2018 Ellen Gregory, Midway University
  • 2017 Tom Harris, VP University Relations, UK
  • 2016 John Asher, Churchill Downs Race Track
  • 2015 Marc Whitt, Eastern Kentucky University
  • 2014 Thomas T. Noland Jr., Humana, Inc.
  • 2013 Phil Osborne, Preston-Osborne
  • 2012 No award given
  • 2011 Michael J. Ruehling, CSX Corporation
  • 2010 Charlotte Tharp, Norton Healthcare
  • 2009 Jim Williams, Keeneland
  • 2008 Rod Wenz and Randy Neely, The Wenz-Neely Company
  • 2007 Jay Rayburn, Florida State University
  • 2006 James M. Wiseman, TEMA
  • 2005 Bernie Vonderheide, UK Public Relations
  • 2004 Lois Mateus, Brown-Forman
  • 2003 W. James Host, Host Communications, Inc.
  • 2002 John R. “Jack” Guthrie, Guthrie/Mayes Public Relations
  • 2001 Dan Lacy, Ashland, Inc.
  • 2000 Thomas L. Preston, Preston Global


About James C. Bowling

Jim Bowling was a true friend of the University of Kentucky.

The Paducah native served Philip Morris Companies Inc. as senior vice president of corporate affairs and assistant to the chairman. He was a member of the company's Board of Directors from 1969 until his retirement in 1986. Following retirement, Bowling continued to serve the profession as a member of Burson-Marsteller's senior advisory board, working closely with company founder Harold Burson until 1995.

Bowling was a much sought after speaker for public relations groups throughout the country. He had close ties with the United States Information Agency and key staff members of several U.S. presidents. He was well known in the halls of Congress, many state capitals and corporate boardrooms throughout the nation, not to mention civic groups. Bowling was national president of Keep America Beautiful and a board member for the National Tennis Foundation, the Country Music Hall of Fame and the Boy Scouts of America. A member of the Public Relations Society of America, he served as chairman of the Public Affairs Council in Washington, D.C.

Bowling also served his home state and its flagship university. He was a member of the University of Kentucky Development Council and he worked with UK's Colleges of Agriculture and Business. He also assisted UK as director of the Sanders-Brown Center on Aging. In addition, Bowling served as a lifetime trustee and two-term president of the Kentuckians of New York, a society founded in 1904.

A man for all seasons, Bowling's legacy remains in the memory of colleagues, friends and the many Kentuckians he touched during his lifetime.

James C Bowling

211 McVey Hall
Lexington, KY 40506-0224

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