Faculty and Staff

One of our program’s best qualities and a source of pride is the personal attention we pay our students. Faculty members, who have considerable professional experience, get to know students as individuals as they advise them from their entry to university life to their placement in the job market. Full-time faculty members include:

Tim Edwards, Professor

B.A. in mass communications with a journalism and public relations emphasis, Southern Arkansas University; M.S.M.C. in mass communication with a radio and television emphasis, Arkansas State University; Ph.D. in communication, University of Kentucky.
Professional experience: A year and a half newspaper reporting experience, three years radio public affairs production.
Teaching experience: UA Little Rock since 1992. Specialty areas: newswriting, reporting, audio/video production, pop culture.
Email: txedwards@ualr.edu

Jamie M. Byrne-McCollum APR, Professor

B.S. in English and journalism, Murray State University; M.S. in communication, Murray State University; Ph.D. in communication, Pennsylvania State University.
Teaching experience: UA Little Rock since 2002, 18 years at other colleges and universities.
Professional experience: newspaper columnist, educational public relations, municipal public relations, volunteer public relations and training experience at local, state, national and international levels for American Cancer Society
Specialty areas: public relations cases, public relations writing, public relations campaigns, media law, mass media writing, special event planning, public relations and marketing for non-profits.
Email: jmbyrne@ualr.edu

CHRISTOPHER ROBINSONChris Robinson, Assistant Professor

A.B., Dartmouth College; M.F.A. in film, Columbia University; Ph.D in Film and Media Studies, University of Kansas. Robinson is a film historian and a curator for the Telluride Film Festival. His research interests include global cinema, the history of art-house films and distribution and exhibition, and changing film technologies and perception of the moving image. He has taught at Emerson College and Columbia University. He has worked in production, distribution, and exhibition, and also has served as post-production editor on numerous documentaries for HBO, ESPN and PBS, including films that screened at the Sundance Film Festival. His work has screened at Telluride, the Seattle Film Festival and the Lisbon and Estoril Film Festival. He also works for Turner Classic Movies.
Email: cxrobinson3@ualr.edu

Kiel Thorlton, Assistant Professor

B.S. in film and television, M.F.A. in film directing, Regent University.
Kiel has been working in film and television for over ten years in a variety of roles including live television, sports, feature films, concerts, and everything in between. His projects have been screened, streamed, and broadcast all over the world. His research is focused on long form narrative and the role of the director in film.
Email: kthorlton@ualr.edu

Adjunct Faculty

Frank Fellone has been an adjunct since the 1980s and has taught a variety of journalism courses at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. He started his newspaper career in 1974 and still writes a column for the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. He has worked as a reporter, photographer and editor for three Arkansas newspapers.
Email: fjfellone@gmail.com

Bradley Pierce has been teaching film for UA Little Rock for 10 years. He graduated with his masters in professional and technical writing from the school in 2009. He is finishing up his doctorate in adult and lifelong learning. Bradley’s favorite genre is horror movies; his favorite scary movie is “Nightmare on Elm Street.” He was in a band called Knox Hamilton, for which he still writes music. Bradley and his wife Jennifer live in Benton, and his full-time job is teaching film and English composition at UA-Pulaski Tech.
Email: bspierce@ualr.edu

Alanna Hamill began her career after graduating with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from the University of Detroit/Marygrove. She moved to New York City where she acted in television and independent films, while appearing in numerous Off-Broadway plays. After moving to Los Angeles she began writing with fellow actor Robert Pucci, with whom she sold 14 feature screenplays and created a CBS television pilot for Diane Keaton and Brad Grey Television. She has written for multiple major Hollywood studios and has worked with many top actors, directors and producers. In 2005, Alanna relocated to Little Rock, where she has acted in several plays at the Arkansas Repertory Theatre and has written and directed training films for the Rose Law Firm and Healthcare.gov.
Email: amnewton@ualr.edu

Byron Tate received his bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville and his master’s in journalism from UA Little Rock. Tate has worked in newspapers for more than 30 years. He started as a reporter, moved up the editorial ranks to editor and then served several years as both editor and publisher. He has worked at the Pine Bluff Commercial, the Southwest Times Record in Fort Smith and spent four years at the Vallejo Times Herald in Vallejo, Calif. He and the newspapers he has written for, edited or run have won numerous awards from the Associated Press Managing Editors association, and the Arkansas Press Association, among others. Tate owns a weekly newspaper, The Sheridan Headlight, where he continues to write and edit.
Email: bltate@ualr.edu


Steve Willhite, Studio Engineer and Technology Manager
Email: gswillhite@ualr.edu

Karin Legard Jones, Admin. Specialist III
Email: kljones3@ualr.edu

Eric Pardoe, Lab Manager and ESPN+ Manager of Student Crew
Email: elpardoe@ualr.edu 

Emeritus Faculty

Mary Jean Thomas, B.S., M.S., Ph.D., (1977-1992)
Professor of Radio, Television, and Film

Edward Jay Friedlander, B.S., M.A., Ed.D.(1975-1996)
Professor of Journalism

Luther Sanders, B.S., M.A., Ed.D., (1974-2000)
Professor of Journalism

Lynda E. Wilson, B.A., M.A., Ph.D., (1980-2000)
Professor of Radio, Television, and Film

David M. Guerra, B.A, M.S, Ph.D., (1976-2005)
Professor of Radio, Television, and Film

Bruce L. Plopper, B.S., M.A., Ph.D., (1990-2012)
Professor of Journalism

Jeanne Norton Rollberg, B.A., M.A., (1983-2016)
Associate Professor of Journalism

Jon Mark Giese, B.A., M.A., Ph.D. (2003-2017)
Associate Professor Radio, Television, and Film

David Weekley, B.A., M.Ed., (1998-2019)
Senior Instructor Radio, Television, and Film

Amy Barnes, B.A., M.A., APR, (2006-2020)
Associate Professor, Public Relations