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1/22/2016 - Jackson, Miss.

Mississippi Public Universities Communications Director Caron Blanton, APR, has been appointed to serve on the Universal Accreditation Board, a diverse group of educators, military public affairs personnel and public relations professionals who oversee the Accreditation in Public Relations program.

Eight national and regional public relations organizations, including the Public Relations Society of America, the National School Public Relations Association and the Southern Public Relations Federation, participate in the program and have representation on the UAB. Blanton was appointed by the Southern Public Relations Federation in October to serve as one of its two representatives on the 21-member board.

“Caron is a proven leader among communicators throughout the Southeast and she’ll represent the region well on the national Universal Accreditation Board,” said Kristie Aylett, APR, Fellow PRSA, 2015 President of the Southern Public Relations Federation. “She has mentored numerous APR candidates through the examination process and been a strong advocate for the credential. We appreciate her continued service to the Southern Public Relations Federation and to the public relations profession.”

Accreditation sets standards of practice for the public relations profession and builds accountability by identifying those who have demonstrated broad business and communications knowledge, strategic perspective and sound professional judgment in the field.

“I’m very excited to have Caron join the UAB in 2016,” said Dr. John Forde, APR, Fellow PRSA, 2015 UAB chair, former president of SPRF and the Public Relations Association of Mississippi. “We have worked together for many years in PRAM and SPRF, and I know what kind of hard worker and professional she is. Caron will contribute tremendously to the board."

Blanton became accredited in 2005 and has served as president of the Southern Public Relations Federation, the Public Relations Association of Mississippi, the Central Chapter of PRAM and the Mississippi School Public Relations Association. She received the state Professional Achievement Award from the Public Relations Association of Mississippi in 2007.

Before joining Mississippi Public Universities, she served previously as the Director of Legislative Services and Director of Communications for the Mississippi Department of Education. A native of Tupelo, Blanton earned a bachelor’s degree from Randolph College in Lynchburg, Va., and a master’s degree from the University of Mississippi in Oxford.

Blanton begins serving a two-year term on the Universal Accreditation Board this month.

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The Mississippi Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning governs the public universities in Mississippi, including Alcorn State University; Delta State University; Jackson State University; Mississippi State University including the Mississippi State University Division of Agriculture, Forestry and Veterinary Medicine; Mississippi University for Women; Mississippi Valley State University; the University of Mississippi including the University of Mississippi Medical Center; and the University of Southern Mississippi.

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