Featured Profile: Jon Stemmle
Jon Stemmle is an expert in health communications.
Telling stories has always been a part of Stemmle’s life. From his start at the Asbury Park Press in New Jersey as a reporter to his current role as an associate professor of strategic communication, he has focused his work on understanding the elements of good storytelling.
“Whether you’re teaching a group of students or creating a public relations campaign, you have to be able to get people invested in what you’re saying,” Stemmle says. “That can only happen when you can bring emotion and humanity to your message. The best way to do that is through stories.”
Through his 20 years in public relations and strategic communication, Stemmle has focused his research in areas such as Photovoice, tailored health communication, and health and science literacy, each dealing with concepts of messaging through storytelling and narrative. He is a frequent invited speaker whose work has been presented to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Cancer Institute and various health literacy groups around the nation. Currently, at the University of Missouri, Stemmle teaches classes dealing with public relations, health and science communication, and integrated marketing campaigns.
For more than a decade, Stemmle worked for MU’s Health Communication Research Center (HCRC). In his time as Director of the Center, he worked to help scientists and health professionals communicate more effectively with the public and media. He also led a variety of projects dealing with cancer prevention messaging, nutrition and healthy lifestyles. He now serves the HCRC in an advisory capacity.
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