John Keshishoglou, founding dean of the Roy H. Park School of Communications and an internationally recognized communications consultant, passed away at the age of 79 after a lengthy illness.
Keshishoglou -- known as “Dr. Kesh” to generations of IC communications students -- came to the college in 1965 as chairman of the Department of Television-Radio and director of the Instructional Resources Center. When the School of Communications was created in 1971 he was elected dean, a post he held until 1979.
Under his leadership, the school grew in size and scope, establishing what are now known as the Department of Cinema, Photography, and Media Arts and the Department of Strategic Communication, as well as a professional video production unit, now known as Park Productions. In 1967, Dr. Kesh brought Rod Serling to campus as a visiting professor, and Serling taught regularly at the school until his death in 1975.
Because of Dr. Kesh's global outlook and belief that media must be grounded in the principles of social responsibility, the Park School established the John Keshishoglou Center for Global Communications Innovation in spring 2011.
During his tenure at IC, Dr. Kesh received three senior Fulbright awards and lived in Greece (the country of his birth), Ethiopia, and Nepal. As a result of his experiences, he worked on assignments for the United Nations and the federal government. He also served in the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary for 35 years, and served in the Greek army for two years.