Richard Campbell named chief communications officer for Auburn University

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Following a national search, Richard Campbell, vice chancellor for strategic communications at the University of North Carolina Greensboro, has been named Auburn University’s inaugural chief communications officer, or CCO, effective May 1. 

An accomplished higher education communications and marketing professional, Campbell brings more than 25 years of experience to Auburn, including extensive roles leading strategy and brand development, media relations and multimedia production. As CCO, Campbell will provide the strategic vision for the university’s internal and external communication functions while overseeing key areas, including public affairs, issues management and community relations.

“As we continue to elevate Auburn’s role as a leading land-grant institution, it is critical that our communication strategies illustrate our impact by telling Auburn’s story in new and different ways,” Auburn President Christopher B. Roberts said. “With his experience as a communications strategist and his understanding of the broader higher education landscape, I am confident Richard will strengthen Auburn’s ability to align our brand with our goals and priorities.”

In the newly created position, Campbell will oversee central communications and marketing staff working across media relations, brand development, integrated marketing and multimedia production. Working closely with the college’s deans and communications professionals, as well as other units, including admissions, Auburn Advancement and athletics, Campbell will also be responsible for the development of a comprehensive communications plan to advance the university’s mission.

Campbell comes to Auburn after holding multiple leadership positions within The UNC System, including vice chancellor for strategic communications at UNC Greensboro and the chief communications officer for the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at North Carolina State University. 

At UNC Greensboro, Campbell served as the university’s lead communications and marketing strategist and oversaw a team of integrated communications and marketing professionals responsible for all institutional communications. In addition to advancing the institution’s branding and public relations initiatives, Campbell also served as the primary advisor to the university’s administration on executive and crisis communications, something he looks forward to continuing at Auburn.

“I am honored to join the Auburn Family and lead a team charged with telling this institution’s amazing story,” said Campbell. “The university’s focus on putting knowledge to work — teaching tomorrow’s leaders, solving real-world problems and creating opportunities that benefit all — is why it consistently ranks among the nation’s top universities and is so beloved by its alumni and friends.” 

In addition to higher education, Campbell also brings experience in the non-profit and corporate sectors, including developing and implementing philanthropic campaigns for the United Way of The Greater Triangle in Raleigh, North Carolina, and companies including SouthBridge and Carolina Broadcasting and Publishing. He holds a degree in broadcast communications from Elon University.

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Auburn University is a nationally ranked land grant institution recognized for its commitment to world-class scholarship, interdisciplinary research with an elite, top-tier Carnegie R1 classification, life-changing outreach with Carnegie’s Community Engagement designation and an undergraduate education experience second to none. Auburn is home to more than 30,000 students, and its faculty and research partners collaborate to develop and deliver meaningful scholarship, science and technology-based advancements that meet pressing regional, national and global needs. Auburn’s commitment to active student engagement, professional success and public/private partnership drives a growing reputation for outreach and extension that delivers broad economic, health and societal impact.