Gary Ford | Webster University

Gary Ford

Gary Ford picturePosition

Associate Professor
Program Facilitator, Public Relations
Department Chair

Home Campus

St. Louis (Webster Groves)


Communications and Journalism

Areas of Expertise and Research

  • Effective business communications
  • Communication strategies for consulting practices
  • Marketing the freelance practice
  • Social media as a marketing tool for small businesses
  • Public relations writing

Courses Taught

PBRL 2100 Fundamentals of Strategic Communications and Public Relations
PBRL 2920 Writing for Public Relations
PBRL 4920 Public Relations Campaigns
PBRL 5322 Public Relations
PBRL 5465 Crisis Management Communications
MEDC 6000 Seminar in Media Communications


Cert, Corporate Finance, Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, 1990
MA, Business Management, School of Business, Webster University, 1988
BJ, School of Journalism, University of Missouri, 1974

Professional Experience

Ford Communications LLC, Weber Shandwick Worldwide, Mallinckrodt, Pfeiffer + Company, Southwestern Bell, Mayo Clinic/Mayo Foundation and Kansas City Kansan.


"I've been teaching public relations, corporate communications and writing classes at Webster University for almost 30 years. With more than 20 years of experience in corporate communications and another 12 years of experience working in the news media, you might say I'm an expert on delivering communications to various internal and external audiences.

My professional experience includes a variety of positions:

  • Corporate communications consultant through my own business, as well as at two public relations agencies, including Weber Shandwick Worldwide, the world's largest public relations agency;
  • Director of corporation communications for Mallinckrodt, a medical products, chemical and pharmaceutical company;
  • Corporate communications manager for Southwestern Bell;
  • Communications specialist for Mayo Clinic/Mayo Foundation, the world's largest medical center;
  • Managing editor of a metro daily newspaper; and,
  • Reporter, editor, and photographer for newspapers and radio.

I enjoy preparing students for a rewarding career in public relations. My experience provides a context for students to use as they examine classroom materials on the various strategies and tactics necessary for good communications. My experience has taught me many things over the years, and I know it is valuable for my students as well."

Department Chair

Gary Ford is chair of the Department of Communications and Journalism. The department is comprised of four master's degrees, two graduate certificates, nine bachelor's degrees, eight minors, and seven undergraduate certificates covering subjects ranging from advertising and marketing communications to sports communication studies. Prior to being elected chair of the Department of Communications and Journalism, Ford  served as the director of graduate studies for the School of Communications for five years. He has been coordinator of the undergraduate public relations program since 2003.

Media Coverage

Webster Today
Students Save Lives, Promote Community Awareness in PR Capstone Experiential Learning Projects
Schuster Retires After 32 Years
Excitement Builds Around Student Success Portal
City of St. Louis Honors Bernie Hayes

Contact Information

Office phone 314-246-8632
Email or

updated 3/2019