Alan Hansen,

Carroll College

As an undergraduate at Boise State University, I heard about the Northwest Communication Association conference in Coeur d’Alene but didn’t take the opportunity to attend. Nearly fifteen years later – following graduate school in the Northeast and a first job in the Southwest – the opportunity again came to attend the NWCA conference. With a bright student who had written a good paper, and high hopes that the conference would be a good experience for her, I attended NWCA. Ten years later, I consider my commitment to NWCA – and the organization’s commitment to my own professional development and particularly that of my students – a career-long endeavor. As president of NWCA, the privilege is mine to invite you to attend our 43rd annual conference, this coming April 11-13, 2019, in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. There is no location more picturesque in which to hold a conference. Its place on the shores of Lake Coeur d’Alene herself, and in a first-class resort, makes NWCA a rare gem among conferences in the Northwest. The 2019 conference itself promises to be terrific. Stephen Yoshimura, NWCA first vice-president and conference planner, is working to put together a terrific program. The 2019 conference is guaranteed to add a fine chapter to stories we share about this organization. Please join us in 2019 for this conference. Plan to submit your work and encourage your undergraduate and graduate students to submit their work as well. We are looking forward to three days of fine fellowship and intellectual and professional enrichment in a magnificent setting. I look forward to seeing you this spring in Coeur d’Alene.



Stephen Yoshimura,

University of Montana

Our association has a long history of supporting teaching and research in the northwest region. In recognition of that history and the culture of collaboration that the association has built over the years, this year’s conference theme is “The Stories We Share.” The groups and cultures to which we belong, and our workplaces, families, and relationships all take shape through a process of creating, telling, and re-telling stories. Indeed, the NWCA itself is built upon numerous stories, many of which surround our excellent conference each year. The opening reception, the scholarly dialogues, and the boat cruise on Lake Coeur d’Alene each year are just a few of the regular events at our conference that likely generate memories and stories that link with meanings you have about your career, relationships, and daily endeavors. Put together, these stories form the very crux of who we are to one another, and as a professional, scholarly association. Building upon this theme, our keynote speaker this year will be Jody Koenig Kellas, Ph.D., Professor of Interpersonal, Family, and Health Communication at University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Professor Kellas’ research focuses on how narratives and storytelling play a role in the understandings, negotiations, and improvements people make to the communication process, and the ways in which narratives – the stories we share – are connected to well-being. She is the editor of the book “Family storytelling: Negotiating identity, teaching lessons, and making meaning” (2013, Routledge), an author of over 28 peer-reviewed journal articles, and the winner of numerous teaching and research awards, the most recent of which was the College Distinguished Teaching Award at University of Nebraska – Lincoln. Having received her MA and Ph.D. from the University of Washington, Professor Kellas has a strong connection to NWCA, and I hope you will join us this year to hear her share her thoughts on the importance of the stories we share. Most of all, I hope you will consider submitting your best work to the conference, and encouraging your students to do the same. This year, the deadline for submission will be January 11, 2019, to allow for sufficient time for the reviewers and division chairs to consider the submissions, and ensure that the program is released in time for everyone to make their plans for attending the conference. The newsletter, with each division’s calls for papers, will be released in the coming weeks, but please start thinking of the papers and panel submissions that you might like to submit, and talking about the conference with your students and colleagues. I am grateful for the opportunity to serve as the association, and look forward to planning the program with your excellent submissions.