Tyler 'Do-Good' Kellogg Honored with Inaugural Susan Mallon Ross Mass Communication Award

05.12.11

Tyler Kellogg, a speech communication major at SUNY Potsdam, will be awarded the inaugural Susan Mallon Ross Mass Communication Award in an upcoming ceremony.

The new award carries the scholarship of $125, and will be given at the College’s Honors Convocation on May 21 in Sara M. Snell Music Theater at SUNY Potsdam’s Crane School of Music.

In the summer of 2009, Tyler “Do-Good” Kellogg drove 1,600 miles from New York to Florida, completing random acts of kindness and assisting 115 strangers. His trip to “do good” was recognized nationwide, including interviews from several news organizations, a letter from Michelle Obama and a phone call from rap artist Lil Wayne.

Kellogg created a brief documentary about his journey for a class project and has given several speeches to high schools and other organizations about his experiences. Kellogg is also the winner of this year’s Elsie D. Kristiansen Public Speaking Award in the Department of English and Communication.

To learn more about Tyler “Do-Good” Kellogg’s adventures in kindness, visit www.tylerdogood.com.

The new award is in memory of Susan Mallon Ross, a distinguished member of the SUNY Potsdam faculty between 1996 and 2004. Among many other contributions, Ross developed a new journalism minor in SUNY Potsdam’s Department of English and Communication. She was the founding director of the College’s faculty development center, known as the Learning and Teaching Excellence Center (LTEC). Ross was also an active union member in the Potsdam, chapter of the United University Professions.

North Country residents may also remember Ross as a member of the technical communication department at Clarkson University, and of the Lions Club. Her husband, Terry (Arthur) taught at Gouverneur Central School, and their sons Casey and Kelly graduated from Potsdam High School.

In July 2008, Ross passed away from cancer at the age of 60.

Ross is remembered as a dedicated and beloved mentor to students at all levels. With characteristic strength, support and humor, she guided graduate and undergraduate students through original research and scholarly presentations of their work.

“Her wonderfully dry sense of humor kept me upbeat and ‘saved the day’ in many stressful moments,” said SUNY Potsdam alumna Louise Tyo.

Alumna Heather (Bracy) West remembers Ross as a “very special woman and friend who was always there when I needed her.”

Recalling a visit with Ross after her cancer diagnosis, alumna Sarah Cook-Raymond said, “She didn’t seem sad then, at least not in the way most people would. She seemed resilient. And more than ever, she seemed funny and still going 100 miles per hour, ready to take the world by storm and encouraging me to do the same.”

Ross was an active scholar in communication studies. She co-edited “From Megaphones to Microphones: Speeches by American Women 1920-1960,” and she published essays on women in baseball as well as environmental problem-solving.

In 2004, Ross relocated to the University of Southern Mississippi, where she taught and established the new Speaking and Learning Centers at the Hattiesburg and Gulf Coast campuses. In her last years, Ross was working on a book about women welders of World War II in the shipyard of Pascagoula, Miss.

For more information about the many achievements of SUNY Potsdam’s faculty and students, visit www.potsdam.edu/newsandevents.

Founded in 1816, and located on the outskirts of the beautiful Adirondack Park, The State University of New York at Potsdam is one of America’s first 100 colleges. SUNY Potsdam currently enrolls approximately 4,350 undergraduate and graduate students. Home to the world-renowned Crane School of Music, SUNY Potsdam is known for its handcrafted education, challenging liberal arts and sciences core, excellence in teacher training, and leadership in the performing and visual arts.