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K-State Today

February 13, 2019

A.Q. Miller School welcomes Supreme Court justice, nationally known author and radio host as new faculty members

Submitted by Kylie Kinley

A serving justice of the Kansas Supreme Court and a nationally renowned radio host are the newest faculty hires of the A.Q. Miller School of Journalism and Mass Communications in the College of Arts and Sciences at K-State.

Justice Dan Biles teaches media law, while Ian Punnett advises the campus radio station, KSDB-FM, and teaches media production and writing.

"Our students are fortunate to learn from these top-notch experts," said Nikhil Moro, director of the Miller School. "Our ability to hire instructors of their caliber speaks to the prospects and promise of this fine school."

Biles is teaching two sections of MC466: Law of Mass Communications this spring.

Admitted to the Kansas bar in April 1978, he is a graduate of Washburn University School of Law and Kansas State University, where he earned the bachelor's degree in journalism in 1974. He served as an adjunct professor of law at Washburn, teaching communications law and trial techniques. A native Kansan, Biles practiced law for 29 years before being elevated to the Kansas Supreme Court in 2009.

For many years before joining the Kansas Supreme Court, Biles volunteered as director of a nonprofit serving more than 300 children and adults with severe developmental disabilities. He served on the advisory board of the Johnson County Housing Coalition, a Kansas nonprofit providing affordable housing in Johnson County to low-income residents. He chaired the National Council of State Education Attorneys, an affiliate organization of the National Association of State Boards of Education in Washington, D.C., receiving the 2009 Douglas F. Bates Distinguished Service Award.

Punnett joins the A.Q. Miller School as faculty adviser of KSDB-FM 91.9 with expertise in producing content for multiple platforms. He is teaching MC130: Writing Conventions and Mechanics and MC191: Audio Production Foundations in spring 2019, among other courses. Punnett's directing and producing talents were featured on the PBS series "Great Performances" in January. He was host of "Coast to Coast AM," the syndicated overnight radio show heard on nearly 600 stations. He is the author of four books of fiction and nonfiction covering topics in journalism history, media technologies and true crime.

Punnett earned his doctorate at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University. As a professional broadcaster, he has worked in major markets since 1990, including Minneapolis-St. Paul, Chicago, Nashville and Atlanta.

"I have enjoyed decades of commercial multimedia success in a variety of genres — enough for two careers," Punnett said. "My greatest joy now is teaching K-State students the skills they’ll need to go as far in journalism and mass communication as they possibly can."

Interested in taking a class from one of these talented faculty members? Email journalism@k-state.edu to get in touch with a journalism and mass communications academic advisor.