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Smith accepts communication, marketing opportunity at Louisiana Tech

Tonya Oaks Smith

Tonya Oaks Smith will join Louisiana Tech University Dec. 1.

Tonya Oaks Smith, current executive director of marketing and communications at Henderson State University in Arkadelphia, Ark., joins Louisiana Tech University Dec. 1 as executive director of University Communications and Marketing.

Smith will lead University Communications in pursuit of an integrated marketing communication focus that will use traditional and new channels to achieve strategic and enrollment goals at Louisiana Tech.

“Louisiana Tech has a strong history of transforming lives through education,” Smith said. “I am so proud to join an established culture of excellence and help make a positive impact on my home state. I’m looking forward to helping share the work of students, faculty, and staff with a wider audience.”

At Henderson State, Smith revitalized brand standards and led the team in a successful web redesign. The team recently completed a year-long project focused on content strategy and promotion for the university’s academic programs.

Smith earned her bachelor’s degree in English literature from LSU and her master’s degree in applied communication studies from UA-Little Rock. Her master’s thesis was focused on the use of social media to communicate preventative health care advice during the H1N1 scare of 2009. She serves as a member of the board of directors for the Higher Education Web Professionals Association and is a board member for the Arkadelphia Chamber of Commerce.

Recognized for her ability to promote plain language and social media as ways to connect with other individuals in the virtual space, Smith has spoken – in person and virtually – for numerous conferences on topics ranging from building effective communication networks to promoting academic programs to developing valuable measurement tools for communication efforts. Smith has served on the communication pilot project team for the American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU) and served as a member of the 2017 AASCU Chief Communicators Conference committee.

A 1990 graduate of West Ouachita High School where her mother, Rebekah, now serves as principal, Smith comes back to north Louisiana with her husband Keith. Her daughter Bekah is a junior majoring in special education at Henderson State.

Smith’s hiring is subject to approval by the University of Louisiana System Board of Supervisors.