Ed Adams is Dean of the BYU College of Fine Arts and Communications. The academic units of the college include Art, Communications, Dance, Design, Music, and Theatre and Media Arts. There are two interdisciplinary programs in Animation and Music Dance Theatre, and the Museum of Art is located within the college. The college employs over 200 faculty and staff and there are 3,700 majors. There are over more than 500 performances a year.
Prior to his appointment as Dean, he was Director of the BYU School of Communications. The School was the 17th largest accredited communications program in the United States. As of 2014, it was the 2nd largest program at BYU with 1350 majors and pre-majors. The school includes advertising, public relations and news media. The lab operations include the BYU Ad Lab, the Bradley Public Relations Agency, KBYU Eleven News, the Universe and the Digital Universe. During this time the public relations program was recognized as one of the Top 5 program in America by PR Week magazine, the advertising program won all five major collegiate advertising awards, and the newscast was selected as the best student newscast in the nation. 2014 represented the largest fundraising year in the history of the department. Major progress was also made on diversity initiatives including a progressive study abroad program in New Zealand emphasizing the intersection of diverse cultures and the media.
Between 2008 and 2011, Adams served as associate dean for the College of Fine Arts and Communications. His responsibilities included faculty hiring, rank and status, faculty leaves and load, professional development, grants, research and creative activities, space and resource reallocation, and personnel issues. He shared the duties of alumni relations, graduate programs and resource planning with the other deans. He sat on many universities committees including the student ratings task force and on the assessment and deeper learning task committee. During this time, he was instrumental in establishing the Laycock Center for Creative Collaboration.
Between 2003 and 2008, Adams served as chair of the BYU Department of Communications. During this tenure he oversaw the department’s move to the Brimhall Building. He worked to re-integrate the Daily Universe back into the curriculum and to have the Daily News Show on KBYU. In 2005 the AdLab was created and in 2008, the Rulon Bradley Agency was moved from being student agency to a fully integrated public relations agency. Through the establishment of a new research center and good faculty hires, research productivity doubled during these years. Teaching ratings also improved.
As a scholar, he has published more than 50 articles as peer-reviewed articles, reviews, book chapters and biographical encyclopedia entries. His scholarly work focuses primarily on the business history of media. His articles have appeared in Journalism and Mass Communication Quarterly, Journalism and Mass Communication Educator, Journalism History, American Journalism, and Public Relations Review. He serves on the editorial board of the journals, Media History Monographs and Journalism History.
Awards and Recognition: He was recipient of the Brigham Young University’s Young Scholar Award (2002), the Kreighbaum Award from the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (AEJMC), an annual award presented to an outstanding journalism and mass communication educator in the nation under 40 years old. It is one of the association’s highest honors (1998), and the first edition of Who’s Who Among the Media and Communications (1998).
Prior to his arrival at BYU, Adams taught at universities in Texas and Ohio. His professional experience was as an administrative director of a magazine publishing company in Phoenix, Arizona.