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News Release

Oct. 27, 2023

Chappell among inductees into College Media Association Hall of Fame

Northwest Missouri State University’s director of student publications, a college media advisor with more than three decades of service to the College Media Association (CMA), is being inducted into CMA’s John A. Boyd Hall of Fame this fall.

Steven Chappell

Steven Chappell

Steven Chappell, an instructor of mass media at Northwest, will be inducted during CMA’s National College Media Convention – the nation’s largest gathering of collegiate journalists, media students and their advisors – which occurs Oct. 29 through Nov. 2 in Atlanta.

“In 30 years of working with college media, Steven has given so much of his time to help CMA, from being the tech guru at conventions when he first started to being the organization’s treasurer on its board of directors,” CMA President Chris Whitley said. “Throughout that time, I’ve always known him to be one of the first people to help out if something needed to be done and the first one to assist an advisor who needed guidance.”

Chappell, an instructor of mass media at Northwest, arrived at the University in 2012, when he succeeded Laura Widmer, who was director of student publications at Northwest from 1983 to 2012. Prior to Widmer, Dr. Linda Puntney was the advisor of the Tower yearbook from 1976 to 1978. Widmer and Puntney also are members of the CMA hall of fame, and Chappell credits both, among others, as significant mentors to his college advising success.

“It’s surprising and shocking and flattering,” Chappell said of his honor. “I still think of myself as a younger member of CMA because a lot of the people who mentored me when I came in are still members of CMA.”

Chappell has been a media advisor and active member of CMA since 1993, advising student publications previously at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, University of Missouri—Columbia, Stephens College in Columbia, Truman State University, Middle Tennessee State University and Simpson College in Iowa.

For Chappell, his passion for journalism was born when his third-grade teacher handed him a copy of The New York Times to read during the class reading time. He practiced and honed his skills as a member of the yearbook and newspaper staffs at his junior high and high school, and he was hired to be a copy clerk at The Birmingham News as a high school student.

He earned his bachelor’s degree in journalism at the University of Alabama at Birmingham while he continued working with The Birmingham News and worked for 10 years as a professional journalist – also at the Shelby County Reporter and The Leeds News in Alabama in roles that included sports photographer, sports editor and newspaper editor – before turning to college advising.

Chappell also was named to the CMA Four-Year College Newspaper Advisor Honor Roll in 2004 for outstanding media advising and service to the organization. He received the President’s Award from the Southeast Journalism Convention in 2010 for his work as vice president and contest coordinator, and he was named Missouri College Media Association Advisor of the Year for 2016.

The John A. Boyd Hall of Fame recognizes longtime CMA members who have contributed to the betterment of the organization and student media programs, in general. Individuals considered for the award must have contributed to college journalism education for at least 20 years while being an active member of CMA. 


Dr. Mark Hornickel
Administration Building
Room 215