Dr. John E. Tapia is known on Western campus for his Hawaiian shirts, a red solo cup in hand and his knowledge on all things rhetoric.
Tapia first came to Western in 1976 after completing his Ph.D. at the University of Arizona located in Tucson in 1975 where he majored in Speech Communication with a focus in American Public Address and Rhetorical Theory and a minor in American History and Statistics.
He is a member of the National Communication Association, Central States Communication, Rhetoric Society of American and the International Rhetoric Society.
Since being at Western he has many upper and lower division courses such as Oral Communication, Road to the White House, Interpersonal Communication and Survey of Rhetorical Theory.
It’s safe to say that Dr. Tapia is wise beyond his years, and has mentored and connected with many of his students, peers and colleagues at Western.
Among everything Dr. Tapia has accomplished he still somehow found time to publish over 30 professional articles and present up to 70 professional presentations in Cleveland, Chicago, St. Louis and more.
“My biggest professional accomplishment are my personal publications because I put so much time and thought into each of them,” Tapia said.
Dr. Hunt who is also retiring this semester with Dr. Tapia has been a colleague of Tapia’s for over 20 years now.
“John Tapia is an exceptional professor, colleague and friend and I wish him the best in his retirement. He deserves it,” Hunt said.
After retirement Tapia plans to focus on his farm right outside of Faucett, MO and his collection of 32 and counting antique cars.
“I have always had a niche for antique cars and now that I am in retirement I can focus on repairing them and attending cars show in the area. I have even thought about starting a car tour,” Tapia said.
Dr. Tapia might be leaving Western, but his charisma and legacy has mad a mark on the communications department that will last for many more years.