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Joseph Brennan

Vice President for Communications and Marketing, University Communications and Marketing

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The Vice President for University Communications and Marketing reports to the President of the University and exercises a critical leadership role as the chief communications and marketing strategist for the University. The Vice President is a member of the President’s Cabinet, and, together with the University’s other senior administrators, shares broad responsibilities to advance the mission, reputation, and capacity of the University to fulfill its important purposes.

The Vice President oversees all aspects of the development and dissemination of the University’s public messaging, including executive communications; branding; advertising; enrollment marketing; news media relations; publications; constituent communications, including messaging for donors and government officials; crisis communications; and digital and social media strategies, content, and architecture.

The Vice President develops and implements annual plans for strategic messaging and for marketing and public relations initiatives, and oversees rigorous analysis of performance metrics and return-on-investment criteria. The Vice President provides strategic public relations counsel to the President, Senior Vice Presidents, Vice Presidents, Deans, faculty and others as necessary. The Vice President will also function, when appropriate, as an official Spokesperson for the University to the news media, to the Legislature, or in other public venues.

The Vice President oversees compliance with the University's policies relating to communications and is a key member of the University's crisis management and response team.


Dr. Brennan is a published author and public speaker whose interests include emergency communications, crisis leadership, services marketing and leadership of the communications function. Go here for a complete list of his peer-reviewed and professional publications:

He earned the Accredited in Public Relations credential from the Public Relations Society of America in 1998. In 2017, Brennan was elected a member of the PRSA College of Fellows, a distinction conferred after a rigorous peer review process, in recognition of superior performance, knowledge, ethics and service to the profession. Only about 1,000 members of the 25,000-member Society have been chosen as Fellows.

Brennan holds a doctorate in English, a master's degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Marketing, and a BA in English and Psychology (summa cum laude). He is a member of Phi Beta Kappa and three other academic honor societies.

Over a 30 year career, he has served as a vice president for three public research universities (the University of Iowa, the University at Albany-SUNY, and Montclair State University).