Local advertising professor gets coveted award

Kimberly Selber
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Edinburg, TX. – The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV) Professor Kimberly Selber, Ph.D., was recently awarded the 2021 American Advertising Federation (AAF) District 10’s Outstanding Advertising Educator of the Year Award.

Established in 1968, the purpose of the award is to recognize AAF members who have made outstanding and unselfish contributions to the growth and improvement of advertising through the academic process.

“I’m humbled to have my career in education recognized and it has been an honor to have had the opportunity to teach and mentor countless young men and women and see them enter and succeed in marketing and advertising,” said Selber.

Selber has been an advertising educator for 25 years. She started her career at the University of Texas at Austin’s (UT Austin) internationally acclaimed Richards School of Advertising and has spent the past 18 years at UTRGV, formally the University of Texas – Pan American (UTPA). 

She has received numerous accolades for her teaching and mentorship, including awards for the University of Texas System’s Regent’s Outstanding Teaching Award, the UTPA Outstanding Professor of the Year, and the UTPA College of Liberal Arts Outstanding Professor of the Year. She has been recognized by the UT Austin Texas Exes for outstanding teaching and was the Luckman Outstanding Teaching Assistant at the University of Illinois – Champaign Urbana. In addition, Selber has an impressive collection of awards as an advertising practitioner. 

“We nominated Dr. Selber for this honor because she’s been an active member of the American Advertising Federation RGV Board of Directors since 2009,” said AAF Board of Directors member, Cyndee Galindo Julien. “She’s been very involved with her students serving as Ad Club advisor and National Student Advertising Competition sponsor. She has mentored UTPA/UTRGV students to win over 150 American Advertising Awards.”

 Today many of her students are successfully working in advertising agencies or marketing departments at major companies across the country. Among them, Santa Hernandez, associate creative director for Dell Technologies.

“Everything that I learned from Dr. Selber, throughout the years, has been instrumental in shaping me into the Art Director and Creative Director that I am today,” said Hernandez. “Had I not taken Introduction to Advertising with her, my whole life would have taken a different route. I am extremely excited for all the students that will continue to be inspired by her and I’m sure there are many past students that feel fortunate to have had her as an advertising professor.”

Another former student, Franco Caballero, director of Strategy & Insights at VMLY&R, a prestigious ad agency with headquarters in New York City, said this award is well-deserved.  

“Dr. Selber’s dedication to my educational journey as well as her ongoing mentorship was more than life-inspiring,” said Caballero. “From working at pioneering multicultural marketing agencies, to historic Madison Avenue in New York and getting a chance to work at iconoclast Wieden + Kennedy; my professional reality is nothing short of a dream come true.” 

Selber has served seven years as the AAF-RGV education chair, three years as the American Advertising Awards (ADDY) chair, from 2019-20 as the vice president and currently holds the position of chapter president.

AAF’s District 10 is made up of chapters in a four-state region – Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma and Texas. 

Established in 1905, the AAF strives to be the “unifying voice for advertising.” Its membership consists of a national network of 30,000 advertising professionals and 4,000 student members.  

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