Gloris Trujillo, a first-year graduate student at The University of Alabama, was named the recipient of the 2019 Bruce K. Berger Graduate Student Leadership Award on Saturday, Feb. 9.
The Department of Advertising and Public Relations at The University of Alabama established this award in 2013 to honor a graduate student in the advertising and public relations Master of Arts program for exemplary leadership. The students in the M.A. program voted in December to select the student who best demonstrated passion for work and the public relations profession, exemplified a strong ethical orientation and employed an inclusive style of leadership.
“Being a part of a group of future leaders, I feel really honored that my peers chose me as the person they think exemplifies leadership,” said Trujillo. “It feels really good that people who are with me almost every day saw those leadership skills in me.”
Trujillo is in her first year of the two-year APR master’s program at UA and is a Fulbright recipient from Panama City, Panama. She graduated cum laude from Universidad Católica Santa María la Antigua in 2015 and currently serves as the co-vice president of diversity and inclusion in UA’s Public Relations Student Society of America.
Trujillo anticipates completing her degree in the spring of 2020 and would like to work in the research department of an agency and continue her research into diversity and inclusion in public relations.
This award is named after professor emeritus Dr. Bruce Berger, who served as the first director for the Plank Center for Leadership in Public Relations, and most recently served as the research director for the Center. Berger’s research focuses on public relations leadership and garners acclaim both in the profession and academia.
“Dr. Berger is not only an inspiration for us, but for everyone,” said Trujillo. “I want to emulate what he has done in the public relations industry with his experience and research.”
Dr. Joseph Phelps, chair of the department of advertising and public relations, presented the award during the Plank Center Board of Advisors dinner at Half Shell Oyster House. Since its inception, the presentation of the award has been tied to the Plank Center and its focus on producing servant leaders in the field of public relations.
About the Plank Center for Leadership in Public Relations: The Plank Center for Leadership in Public Relations is the leading international resource for practitioners, educators and students who are passionate about advancing their careers and the public relations profession. Led by a national advisory board of leading educators and practitioners, the Center develops and recognizes outstanding diverse public relations leaders, role models and mentors to advance ethical public relations in an evolving, global society. Founded in 2005, the Center is named after Betsy Plank, the first lady of PR. Betsy’s legacy and vision continues on in the Center’s programs and initiatives to advance the profession and public relations education. For more information, please visit www.plankcenter.ua.edu.