Current Members
Dr. Matthew Barnidge

ColorMatthew Barnidge (Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Madison) is an assistant professor in The University of Alabama’s Department of Journalism & Creative Media. He specializes in political communication, news audiences, and media technologies, and he studies these topics in comparative and multiple national contexts. Matthew sits on the editorial boards of Human Communication ResearchSocial Science Computer Review, and Communication Methods and Measures, and he has published more than 30 refereed journal articles and book chapters in journals such as Political Communication, The International Journal of Press/PoliticsNew Media & SocietyCommunication Research, and Computers in Human Behavior, among others. Matthew is from Houston, Texas, and he spent two years living in Vienna, Austria, where he was a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Vienna. Personal website:; Twitter: @mbarni109

Danielle Deavours

Danielle DeavoursDanielle Deavours is a Ph.D. candidate at The University of Alabama and a faculty member at the University of Montevallo. Danielle specializes in media sociology, nonverbal communication, crisis communication, and journalistic practice. She is an Emmy and Murrow award-winning journalist with over a decade of professional experience. She has also worked in nonprofit communication for the American Heart Association, American Red Cross, and UAB Medicine. She teaches multimedia journalism and public relations at The University of Alabama and University of Montevallo. She currently serves as the Communication Chair and Research Co-Chair for the Emerging Media and Technology Division for the Broadcast Education Association, as well as the Student Hard News coordinator for the BEA Festival of Arts. Danielle currently lives with her husband and daughter Skylar in Hoover, Alabama. Website:; Twitter: @danielledeavour

Misha (Michael) Viehouser

Misha (Michael) Viehouser (M.S., Eastern Washington University) is a doctoral student in the College of Communication and Information Sciences at The University of Alabama. His research interests include the intersectionality of LGBTQ+ minorities, religious communication, and identity. Misha is from Spokane, Washington.

Jiehua Zhang

J_ZhangJiehua Zhang (M.S., Beijing Jiaotong University) is a Ph.D. student in The University of Alabama’s College of Communication & Information Sciences. Her research interests include political communication, digital journalism, and emerging media. Jiehua joins the team from the University of North Carolina’s School of Media and Journalism, where she was a visiting scholar for the past three years. During that time, she also covered political and global news for the Chinese website Previously, Jiehua worked a digital media journalist for more than a decade, most prominently as a senior editor at The Wall Street Journal’s Chinese-language website. In her free time, Jiehua enjoys fishing and playing cards with her husband and son. Jiehua is from Beijing, China. 

Faculty Affiliates
Dr. Ryan Broussard

Ryan.jpegRyan Broussard (Ph.D., The University of Alabama) is an assistant professor in the Mass Communication Department at Sam Houston State University. His primary research interests lie at the intersection of sports and politics, and his secondary interests center on news and the sociology of media production. At Alabama, he teaches introductory writing and reporting; introduction to storytelling in film, TV, and digital media; and introductory sports writing and reporting. Ryan is from Lafayette, Louisiana, where he worked as a journalist for four years.

Dr. Eric Cooks


Eric Cooks (Ph.D., The University of Alabama) is a postdoctoral associate with the STEM Translational Communication Center at the University of Florida. He is an interdisciplinary social scientist whose current research explores mediated communication, particularly as it intersects with civic engagement and the politics of health and science. He has a special interest in the influence of online expression and news consumption on behavior, along with the use of open science principles in Communication. His work has appeared in Journal of Religion and Health and Health Promotion Practice and he has received several research paper awards from the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (AEJMC). Eric is from Tuscaloosa, Alabama. Twitter: @EricCooks2

Dr. Trevor Diehl

DIEHL_2Trevor Diehl (Ph.D., University of Vienna) is an assistant professor at Central Michigan University in the School of Broadcast and Cinematic Arts. His research examines emerging news media technologies and political behavior, including the role of social media in political persuasion, multi-platform news consumption, and comparative media studies. Trevor has published more than 20 peer-reviewed journal articles in journals such as New Media & Society, Journal of Communication, Human Communication Research, Digital Journalism, and Journalism Studies. Before life in academia, he worked as a mechanic specializing in Mercedes-Benz cars. His family runs the shop in Reno, Nevada, where he is from. Personal website:; Twitter: @trevor_diehl

Dr. Bumsoo Kim

Bumsoo KimBumsoo Kim (Ph.D., The University of Alabama) is a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Communication and Journalism at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. His research interests include digital media, political communication, and local communication ecology. More specifically, his research investigates the effects of emerging media technologies on local communication practices and political engagement. His work has been published in New Media & Society and Computers in Human Behavior, among others, and he has received several research paper awards from the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (AEJMC). Bumsoo is from Seoul, Korea. Twitter: @bkim29

Dr. Lindsey A. Sherrill

LinHeadshotdsey A. Sherrill (Ph.D., The University of Alabama) is an assistant professor of Business Communication at the University of North Alabama. Her research interests include media sociology and political communication, particularly the role of entrepreneurial media in social movement mobilization. Her research has been presented at the conferences of the Broadcast Education Association (BEA) and International Communication Association (ICA), and has received top paper awards from the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (AEJMC), the Southern States Communication Association (SSCA), and the National Communication Association (NCA). She has published in Communication Theory, Journal of Broadcasting & Electronic Media, and others. Her co-authored study, “The Influence of Female Lead Characters in Political TV Shows: Links to Political Engagement,” was recently covered by BBC News, The Hollywood Reporter, and Lindsey is from Walnut Hill, Florida. Personal website:; Twitter: @LindseyASherril

Former Members
Dr. Will Heath


Will Heath (Ph.D., The University of Alabama) is an instructor in the Department of Communication Studies at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. His research interests include community media, college media, social capital and structural pluralism. More specifically, his research explores the various influences on the reporting of conflict within the community setting. Will is from Opelika, Alabama, and his professional experience includes more than a decade in community newspapers, serving in a variety of roles.

Manasar Alharethi


Manasar Alharethi is a doctoral candidate in The University of Alabama’s College of Communication & Information Sciences. His research interests include social media, global communication, and political communication in the Arab world. Before coming to Alabama, he was the Chief Strategy Officer for the Gulf Media Association. Manasar is from Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.


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