SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — Evangel University officials were planning for the future when they hired Erin Hedlun as a content specialist in the fall of 2018. That position was for a creative writer, and they knew she had both the skills and experience for the job — as a bonus, she also had the deep understanding of the institution that only a graduate could have.
Effective Jan. 1, 2021, Erin Hedlun has been promoted to director of public relations, and she now serves as the official spokesperson for Evangel University and its seminary.
“Erin has proven to be an exceptional member of our communication team and has developed excellent relationships with faculty and staff across the campus,” said Dr. Michael Kolstad, vice president for university advancement.
“We knew when we hired her that she had exactly what we needed at the time as well as for the future,” he said.
Hedlun graduated with honors from Evangel in 2006, having earned a bachelor’s degree in communication and electronic media.
She is known in the community and by local media for her strong leadership as the public information officer with the Springfield-Greene County Office of Emergency Management, from late 2014 to mid-2018.
“Erin already has relationships with local media and will now be able to step right into the position as the official spokesperson for the university without hesitation,” added Kolstad.
“It has been a privilege to continue my professional career at a place that helped shape the skills I use every day. I truly love this university and look forward to representing it well as I follow in the footsteps of my friend and colleague, and the man who helped establish this role, Paul Logsdon,” said Hedlun.
Logsdon retired in December after 33 years of service.
A community leader
Hedlun is one of less than 100 individuals in the nation to receive the Master Public Information Officer certification offered as the highest level of training through FEMA and the Department of Homeland Security.
She has also taught media relations and communications courses across the state of Missouri as a contract instructor for the MO State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA).
Her position with the Office of Emergency Management has led her to develop trusted working relationships with the other public information/public relations professionals in the region.
“I had the pleasure of working with Erin in her role as public information officer for the Springfield-Greene County Office of Emergency Management and was pleased to see that she was chosen at Evangel University,” said Melissa Haase, assistant director of public information and civic engagement for the City of Springfield.
“Erin’s proven track record as a detail- and relationships-oriented PR, marketing and communications professional makes her an outstanding choice to serve her alma mater in this community leadership position.”
Her public sector work led her to important areas of community service in Southwest Missouri.
Hedlun is past vice president of the Greene County 100 Club, a charitable organization that exists to help the surviving families of firefighters and law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty. She also volunteered her time as the official spokesperson and public information officer for the Missouri Emergency Management Association.
Through its partnership with Evangel, Hedlun has become a board member for Achieve of Southwest Missouri, a comprehensive transition program designed to empower those with disabilities, ages 18-25, to succeed in life after high school.
“Erin is a great leader, a great communicator and a great person,” said Kathryn Wall, public health information administrator for the Springfield-Greene County Health Department.
“She has a wealth of experience that will serve Evangel and our community so well. I can’t think of anyone better prepared or more deserving,” she said.
A native of Honesdale, Pennsylvania, in the heart of the Pocono Mountain region, Hedlun moved to Springfield in 2003 to enroll at Evangel and graduated in 2006.
Prior to the Emergency Management position, Hedlun advanced through administrative positions with the National Office of the Assemblies of God, to communication and marketing positions with Global University and Temple University.
During that time, she married fellow Evangel graduate Donavon Hedlun, and together they’ve had two sons, Gideon (10) and Gibson (8). She reports that her other responsibilities in life include being an on-demand storyteller, and that she is “proficient in multi-tasking, knock-knock jokes, and rolling with the punches.”
For more information, contact Erin Hedlun at HedlunE@evangel.edu, (417) 860-0903 (cell), or (417) 865-2811 ext. 7575.
About Evangel University
Evangel University, with the Assemblies of God Theological Seminary ( AGTS ), is a comprehensive Christian university committed to excellence in educating and equipping students to serve the church and society globally. Evangel and AGTS serve more than 2,200 students from all 50 states and numerous foreign countries, offering 70 undergraduate majors and 19 master’s and doctoral degrees.
• The story was picked up immediately by our friends at the Springfield News-Leader. — https://www.news-leader.com/story/news/education/2021/01/07/erin-hedlun-named-spokeswoman-evangel-university-ag-seminary/6585647002/