Research and Creative InterestsSports Media, Sports Media Effects, Gender and Sports, Media Effects, Media Portrayals,
Lauren Reichart Smith (Ph.D. 2010) is an assistant professor of sports media. She previously served as an associate professor and the associate director for public relations at Auburn University. As a former television producer, she worked in both the Atlanta and Birmingham television markets, and received an Emmy nomination in 2005. She earned her B.A. from Fairfield University, her M.A. from the University of Alabama-Birmingham, and her Ph.D. from the University of Alabama.
Lauren's main research area lies in mediasport - the intersection between sports and mass media. Her research encapsulates both mass media and social media. This focus has enabled her to complete research that focuses on issues of gender, race, and national identity. She primarily analyzes how athletes are portrayed in the media, as well as how new technologies enhance a fan's enjoyment of a game. More recent work has begun to examine the effects of sports media on audiences, primarily focusing on attention. Lauren's work has been presented at conferences such as the International Communication Association (ICA), the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (AEJMC), Broadcast Education Association (BEA), the International Association for Communication and Sport (IACS), and Southern States Communication Association (SSCA). She has won top paper awards at SSCA, BEA, IACS and AEJMC. She is currently the chair of the International Association of Communication and Sport, and the research co-chair for the Sport Communication Interest Group of AEJMC.
Her research has been published in Journalism and Mass Communication Quarterly, the Journal of Broadcasting and Electronic Media, the Howard Journal of Communication, Communication Research Reports, Electronic News, the International Review for the Sociology of Sport, the Sociology of Sport Journal, Sport in Society, the Journal of Sports Media, the International Journal of Sport Communication, Communication & Sport, and the Journal of Intercultural Communication.
Lauren was once an All-American gymnast and a Division I springboard diver. She is still an avid sports fan today, and counts down the days until football season. In her spare time, she enjoys traveling with her husband Kenny Smith. Lauren is currently a member of USA Triathlon and regularly competes in duathlons and triathlons. She's an Ironman finisher, and a two-time qualifier for USA Triathlon Age Group National Championships.