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Honoring Keltner

WSCA DISTINGUISHED SERVICE AWARD SPEECH: 1996

HONOREE: JOHN W. "SAM" KELTNER

FEBRUARY 19, 1996, PASADENA, CA

One of many nomination letters eloquently summarizes why our honoree deserves this award with the following quote: "He invested enormous energy and time into helping people like me develop our skills and knowledge, as well as our careers in the Communication discipline" (J. Elvins). An additional quote states: "He is a man of great personal warmth and wisdom whose friendship and support has been appreciated by many members of WSCA over the years" (J. Elvins). It has been a pleasure to serve as the Chairperson of the Distinguished Service Award on behalf of WSCA. It has given me the opportunity to work with the following two colleagues: Bob Avery and Lynn Wells. The objective of this award is to honor a colleague in our midst today-an individual who has served this association and our discipline in many ways, for many years. However, before continuing with the presentation of this award I would like to ask prior recipients to stand and be recognized.

I think we all agree that those before us today are outstanding colleagues that we must continue to thank and cherish. To continue, I would like to briefly summarize some of the accomplishments of today's recipient. This individual has served our discipline in many ways, including:

WSCA: President, Vice President, Executive Council member, Executives Club member, and as a member of numerous committees.

Scholarship: numerous articles, book chapters, and convention presentations.

Additional contributions include: Outstanding Professor, Practitioner/ Consultant for numerous agencies and organizations, Department Chair, and a mentor to more scholars and professionals than I have time to mention.

The committee was most impressed while reviewing the letters of nomination. A few quotes that confirm the impact this individual has had on WSCA and our discipline include:

"For a number of years his writing virtually defined this young and very rapidly growing part of our field." (J. Stewart)

"...an innovator in interpersonal, experiential and peace communication." (M. Bishow)

"He and I have sometimes disagreed strongly about interpersonal concepts and teaching approaches, but II have always grown from our conflicts and valued the intelligence, presence, and heart that lie consistently brings to our discussions." (J. Stewart)

"...deserves the award because lie was a hell of a good teacher."(R. Harnack)

And to summarize, a final quote: "His career has been varied and his influence on careers and lives profound" (J. Anderson)

These testimonials confirm the impact this individual has had on: WSCA and the discipline; those who have shared time with him in the classroom, workshops or collaborated on consulting projects; friends and colleagues in his community; and even spouses of colleagues. Individuals nominating him for this award hold positions as Professors, Consultants, and governmental officials-including a former member of the Oregon State House of Representatives. A most impressive list of individuals who attribute a great deal of their to success to our honoree.

In conclusion, it is with great pleasure that I present to you this year's recipient. His accomplishments and contributions frilly embody the spirit of this award. Please join me in congratulating John W. "Sam" Keltner as the 1996 recipient of the WSCA Distinguished Service Award.

Respectfully delivered,

Timothy M. Downs

1996 WSCA Distinguished Service Award Committee:

  • Timothy M. Downs, Chair, Executive Council Member-at-Large
  • Robert K. Avery, WSCA Past President
  • Lynn Wells, Executives Club
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