Evonne “Von” Whitmore, Ph.D. associate professor for the School of Journalism and Mass Communication, passed away Thursday morning after a battle with ovarian cancer.
Whitmore had been a staff member of JMC for more than 20 years and specialized in electronic media and broadcast news. She was part of study abroad programs in Paris and Geneva and spent some of 2009 in Egypt. Whitmore served several terms as the JMC graduate coordinator and assisted the school in greatly increasing graduate enrollment. Whitmore was also a senior officer for the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication.
Jeff Fruit, director of JMC, said that Whitmore had a broad impact on the life of the university and the journalism school.
“I would characterize her as a force of nature around here,” Fruit said. “She will be greatly missed here.”
Stanley Wearden, dean of the College of Communication and Information, said that Whitmore made a huge contribution to the broadcast news program.
“(Whitmore’s) standards really helped transform the program into one of the leading broadcast news programs in the country,” Wearden said. “She is an institution in the school of Journalism and Mass Communication.”
Whitmore was a leading scholar for the study of diversity in journalism education and recently worked to develop a course for media convergence. In her free time, she enjoyed gardening and traveling with her family.
Whitmore is survived by her husband of nearly 40 years, Arthur Whitmore III, her son, Kinney, and daughter, Lauren.
Arthur Whitmore described his wife as very orderly, knowledgeable and gracious.
“She was very well-studied and well-read. She beat ‘Jeopardy’ all the time,” Arthur Whitmore said.
Lauren Whitmore said that her mother always strived to help students succeed.
“The only side I know of her is loving, yet stern,” Lauren Whitmore said. “She had high expectations and always challenged me to go beyond my limits, and I know she did the same for her students.”
Funeral services will be held Monday, Aug. 29 at noon at the Arlington Church of God in Akron.
Donations can now be made to the Dr. Evonne H. Whitmore Memorial Scholarship through JMC.
Contact Daily Kent Stater reporter Drew Parker at [email protected]