Terre Ware Book Author Lecture Series to Present Rex Nelson on October 26

OCTOBER 11, 2021

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Terre Ware Book Author Lecture Series to Present Rex Nelson on October 26

at Arkansas State University-Mountain Home


The first speaker in the new Terre Ware Book Author Lecture Series at Arkansas State University-Mountain Home (ASUMH) will be Rex Nelson, author of Southern Fried: Going Whole Hog in a State of Wonder. The event will take place in the Ed Coulter Performing Arts Center inside the Vada Sheid Community Development Center at ASUMH. The event begins at 6:00 p.m. on October 26, 2021.  No tickets are required for this free event.


Rex Nelson is the senior editor of the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, where he writes three columns a week along with stories for the newspaper's Sunday Perspective section. Nelson, one of the state's most high-profile writers and speakers, has had a long career in journalism, government and public affairs.


Prior to rejoining the newspaper in June 2017, Nelson served as senior vice president and director of corporate communications for Simmons First National Corp. He was responsible for internal and external communications for the corporation, which now has banking operations in eight states and almost $20 billion in assets.


Nelson has been honored through the years by organizations as varied as the Historic Preservation Alliance of Arkansas, the Arkansas Historical Association, the Arkansas Municipal League, the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation, the Arkansas Governor's Conference on Tourism, the Arkansas Library Association and the Arkansas chapter of the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame. Gov. Asa Hutchinson and the Arkansas Rural Development Commission named Nelson the 2016 Rural Advocate of the Year for the state of Arkansas.


Nelson, the author of three books, is viewed as an expert on Southern history, culture and politics. He is the author of the popular Southern Fried blog at www.rexnelsonsouthernfried.com.


Before joining Simmons, Nelson was the president of Arkansas' Independent Colleges & Universities, an association of the state's 11 private institutions of higher education. He earlier served as the senior vice president for government relations and public outreach at The Communications Group, a Little Rock-based marketing, advertising and public relations firm.


Nelson spent almost 13 years from 1996-2009 working at senior levels of the state and federal governments. He became Gov. Mike Huckabee's director of policy and communications the day Huckabee took office in July 1996 and was at the governor's side for almost a decade as a member of the senior management team. Nelson, who has extensive contacts in Washington, was named by President George W. Bush in 2005 as one of the president's two appointees to the Delta Regional Authority, a regional planning and economic development agency that serves 252 counties and parishes in parts of eight states. He became recognized as one of the country's leading spokesmen on Delta issues.


Nelson was the political editor of the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette during Bill Clinton's 1992 campaign for president and during Clinton's first term. He was a constant presence in those years on radio and television shows nationwide to discuss the Clinton administration. Nelson earlier had served as the Washington bureau chief and the assistant sports editor of the Arkansas Democrat.


Organizations that Nelson has chaired through the years include the Political Animals Club of Little Rock, the Oxford American literary magazine and Connect Arkansas. He served on the boards of the Arkansas Sports Hall of Fame, the Arkansas Natural and Cultural Resources Council, the Arkansas Humanities Council, the National Food and Beverage Foundation and the Pryor Center for Arkansas Oral and Visual History. Nelson helped found the Little Rock Touchdown Club and the Arkansas Food Hall of Fame. He currently serves as the vice president of the board of the Arkansas Travelers professional baseball club. He also serves on the Historic Arkansas Museum Commission and on the board of the Arkansas Cinema Society.


Nelson is an Arkadelphia native and a summa cum laude graduate of Ouachita Baptist University. He received the Alumni Milestone Award from Ouachita in 2012. He has served as the radio voice of the Ouachita football team for almost four decades. The broadcast booth at Cliff Harris Stadium was named for him in 2015. In 2016, Nelson was inducted into the Arkansas Sportscasters & Sportswriters Hall of Fame.


For more information, contact Christy Keirn at 870-508-6109.



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