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Dean is an associate professor of public relations and director of the School's public relations sequence. A North Carolina native, he joined the SOJC in 2014, and loves getting to know the students here. He is always happy to meet with new majors (welcome!) and anyone considering public relations as a career path.

His research focuses on the role public relations plays in fostering diverse and inclusive organizations and how organizations convey those D&I values to key internal and external stakeholders. He also explores advocacy communication, specifically through the lens of LGBTQ organizations at the local and state levels. His work has been published in leading PR journals such as PR Review. His state-of-the-field article focused on diversity and inclusion was named one the top articles published by the Public Relations Society of America’s PR Journal in 2015. He is on the editorial board for the Journal of Public Relations Research, PR Journal and Journal of Public Interest Communication. Dean also has been invited to present his findings on D&I to various audiences spanning academic and professionial settings.

Currently, Dean is a member of the Commission on Public Relations Education and led the diversity chapter development for the Commission’s 2017 national report. He also serves on the advisory committee for the Institute for Public Relations's Center for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. In 2020, he served as national head for the Public Relations Society of America’s Educators Academy. 

Before entering academia, he spent about a decade in the corporate world, working as a business process consultant for Andersen Consulting (now Accenture), in finance and marketing roles for the Coca-Cola Company, and as media relations analyst and corporate spokesperson for Nortel Technology.