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Faculty Member To Receive Posthumous Award For Service


JONESBORO – Bonnie Thrasher, an instructor of multimedia journalism and faculty adviser to the student newspaper, The Herald of Arkansas State University, who died at her home March 31, will be honored posthumously by the College Media Association (CMA) for service and outstanding achievements as an adviser.

Thrasher, who served as vice president for the CMA, will be recognized at a ceremony Thursday, Oct. 29, 5:30 p.m., at the Hilton Austin Hotel, in Austin, Texas, during the 2015 National College Media Association convention. Nine staff members of The Herald will accompany new Herald adviser and assistant professor in the College of Media and Communication Sandra L. Combs to accept the award. The group will also present a short video about Thrasher.

The College Media Association is the nation’s largest organization dedicated to serving collegiate media advisers and annually recognizes the achievements of individuals through various award programs, including Honor Roll Adviser Awards for professionals who have advised for five or fewer years and Distinguished Adviser Awards for professionals who have advised for greater than five years. 

The CMA Board is considering setting up a scholarship program to honor college media leaders who have passed away.

In addition, a variety of special honors recognizing service and outstanding achievements are awarded. CMA also recognizes individuals with lifetime membership and those who are retiring and have had active membership status for at least 10 years.

Thrasher was very active in national, regional and local journalism professional organizations.  She was vice president for the College Media Association and secretary/treasurer for the Southeast Journalism Conference (SEJC).  She regularly took students to journalism workshops and competitions, and her students frequently brought home several awards from SEJC and the Arkansas College Media Association. 

In 2007, the Arkansas Press Association awarded Thrasher its Journalism Educator of the Year award. The Jonesboro Sun recognized her as a Freedom of Information hero in 2010.  She was a staunch advocate of First Amendment rights and up-to-date journalism education.


Bonnie Thrasher
Bonnie Thrasher