Baylor University

Professor Maxey Parrish

The Big Picture: an insight to the ongoing career
of Baylor's Maxey Parrish

By Alekza Latte, Public Relations Major

Maxey in Italy Resized ImageMaxey Parrish has quite the collection of memories, outstanding awards and experience when it comes to his time here at Baylor. Parrish grew up attending Baylor events with his father, Tom, who aided in raising funds for the buildings we use today.

"My Dad would tell me, ‘You can go anywhere you want™ But I'm only paying for Baylor!," Parrish said. He attended Baylor and graduated with a Journalism degree in 1978. While in his undergrad years at Baylor, Parrish ran for the track team and earned a letterman. His passion for journalism and sports led him to exciting opportunities in the public relations field.

AFTER GRADUATION

Parrish spent time working in different parts of Texas and after two years, he returned to Baylor in 1980. Parrish spent 20 years directing media relations in the Baylor Athletic Department.

"It was an exciting time in the football program when I returned to Baylor, we had just won the Cotton Bowl!, he said. Parrish was part of the staff that launched the first website dedicated to collegiate sports here at Baylor

One of Parrish's most memorable moments of his journalistic career was his involvement in the 1992 Summer Olympics in Barcelona, Spain, and the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta, Georgia. He staffed eight events and two Olympic games for the Olympic committee.

THE MOUNTAINTOP

In Barcelona, he was in charge of the U.S. Olympic track team and in Atlanta, he coordinated interviews and aided in setting up the structure for how the interviews were to be conducted after the meets.

"I was doing something for my country on the international stage, in a very unique setting, Barcelona. It was a very memorable experience," Parrish said, "they asked me to do publicity for the U.S. team when they went to meet President Bush. I didn't even go home, I went straight to the White House! That was the mountaintop."

Parrish worked for rivals.com and experienced the Internet boom in the sports industry, learning about the business world and how the for-profit industry works. During his time in the athletic department and working with rivals.com, he taught as an adjunct professor off and on when a course needed to be filled.

Parrish spent some time in the coast as a "hard hat" building condominiums and became aware of an open position as a full time lecturer in the journalism department. Parrish started his full time teaching position in the fall of 2001 and has been at Baylor ever since.

If you haven't had Parrish in a Writing for Media Markets class or advisement, you've probably seen him around the halls of Castellaw. Known for his charismatic style of teaching and gentle spirit, Parrish is more than your average Baylor professor.

STUDENT'S PERSPECTIVE

"Maxey's experience in the sports public relations industry is really inspiring. It shows how passion and a knowledgeable background can take you on a fun ride. He took something he loved and made it his living." said Landen Ellis, Junior public relations major that took Intro to Public Relations with Parrish.

During his time here at Baylor, Parrish has assisted students in the Baylor in Maastricht study abroad program, teamed up with Dr. Clark Baker to put together the Journalism Department's Baylor in Florence program and assisted several student organizations on mission trips. This summer will be Parrish's tenth mission trip with students.

PARRISH'S TAKE ON POST GRAD

"I hope that my students take away more than the theoretical aspects of journalism. I want them to be prepared to go to work and be people that can think. The hallmark of a Baylor graduate is they walk out of here with tangible skills and experience. They're ready for the workforce and able to make a contribution. I've heard countless times from colleagues and those in the industry, ‘Baylor grads are the equivalent of an employee that's had one or two years of experience'," said Parrish, "A Baylor graduate is someone who's a thinker, one that sees the big picture."

This summer, Parrish will be returning to Florence and Spain with his students to further their knowledge in journalism and do missionary work.