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Joel Gambill Speaker Series to Feature Graycen Colbert Bigger


JONESBORO – Graycen Colbert Bigger, executive director of the Northeast Arkansas Intermodal Authority and assistant vice president of community development for Farmers and Merchants Bank, will return to Arkansas State University Monday and Tuesday, Nov. 14-15, for the Dr. Joel Gambill Distinguished Speaker Series.

She will speak with students in the School of Media and Journalism and to public relations, advertising and art history students.

Bigger, a Northeast Arkansas native, attended A-State and earned bachelor’s degrees in photojournalism and history of art, then continued her education with a master’s degree in art business from Sotheby’s Institute of Art in New York. She specializes in business and public relations with more than a decade of experience.

Previously she was the director of placemaking for the City of Cherokee Village as well as adjunct professor of art history for A-State. She is also is a contributor to Arkansas Business Publishing Group.

In 2021, Bigger was appointed by Gov. Hutchinson to the Arkansas Higher Education Coordinating Board.

She has also committed to other community programs including the Arkansas Good Roads Foundation Board of Directors, Arkansas Economic Developer and Chamber Executives, North Delta Community Foundation, Spring River Innovation Hub, and the Black River Technical College Foundation.

Bigger has been recognized as one of Arkansas’s 250 most influential leaders as well as an Emerging Young Alumnus at A-State. She resides in Pocahontas with her husband, Alex.

The endowed series was initiated in 2008 in honor of Dr. Joel Gambill, longtime journalism educator and department chair, who served at A-State for 44 years. During his career, Gambill was recognized with the Outstanding Educator Award and the Distinguished Service Award from the Arkansas Press Association.

More than 40 outstanding alumni of the program have returned to A-State to share their insight with current students in the speaker series.

Graycen Colbert Bigger