Tracy Lauder

Chair, Department of Media and Communication Academic Affairs

As an associate professor who chairs the Department of Media and Communication at Emory & Henry College, I lead a dynamic and multifaceted academic program that engages students and lands them jobs they love.

A native of the Gulf Coast of Alabama, I moved to Appalachia 19 years ago and fell in love with the mountains—a place I now call home. I find the college’s close community of students, faculty, and staff to be a warm and supportive environment for people to reach their full potential. I love working with students, especially mentoring and advising, and when I’m not on campus, you might find me out in the woods with my husband hiking a beautiful trail.


  • University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, AL
    Ph.D., Communication and Information Sciences
  • Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA
    M.J., Public Relations
  • University of West Alabama, Livingston, AL
    B.A., English


I teach courses in media writing, introductory graphic design, public relations, media and culture, persuasion theory, and women and media. I have also taught in the core curriculum, notably the first-year seminar and the senior capstone course, as well as in the Women’s & Gender Studies program.


My research interests have focused on the cultural impact of mass mediated messages—particularly the portrayal of gender, race, sexual orientation, age, and socioeconomic class. My publications tell the story of the startup of Southern Living magazine in 1960s Birmingham.

Professional Experience

During my 19 years at Emory & Henry, I have served various administrative roles including the Chair of the Social Sciences Division, the Director of the Oral Communication Proficiency Program, Director of the Women’s and Gender Studies minor, the Director of the SACSCOC Quality Enhancement Plan, the Director of the Ampersand Integrative Learning initiative, the Assistant Vice President of Special Academic Programs, and the Interim Director of the van Vlissingen Center for Career and Professional Development.

Before joining the academy full time, I worked at the Birmingham-based Southern Progress Corporation (a Time-Warner subsidiary) in the corporate public relations office and as a travel editor for Southern Living magazine. I also ran a freelance writing and consulting business where I worked for the sales teams of Cooking Light and Weight Watchers magazines, launched the coastal travel magazine Southern Breeze, and provided copy writing and creative direction services for a wide variety of agencies and clients in Birmingham. From May to September 2019, I served as the Director of Marketing and Communications for Population Health at Ballad Health, headquartered in Johnson City, Tennessee.

I have also taught part-time at the University of Alabama (Tuscaloosa), the University of Alabama–Birmingham, and Samford University (Birmingham).

  • Tracy Lauder
    Rachael Wilbur

Contact Info

P.O. Box 947
Emory, VA 24327



Byars Hall