Faculty Profile for Elizabeth June Clark

profile photo for Elizabeth June Clark
Elizabeth June Clark
Lecturer — School of Jrnlism & Mass Comm
OM 236B
phone: (512) 245-2656

Biography Section

Biography and Education

Elizabeth Cernota Clark
(Beth Clark)

Beth Clark joined the Texas State journalism faculty in 2008, bringing to the classroom more than 30 years of experience as a reporter, editor, freelance writer and college professor. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in English literature and composition from Knox College (Galesburg, Ill., 1973) and a 2002 Master of Journalism degree from the Frank W. Mayborn Graduate Institute of Journalism at the University of North Texas.

Her teaching career began in Denton at UNT and Texas Woman’s University, where she taught in-class and online journalism courses while also advising The Lasso, TWU’s campus newspaper. She has taught in-class and online at Winston-Salem State University and was adviser to The News Argus campus newspaper. She has also taught English composition at Texas Lutheran University.

Clark began her journalism career at the Chicago Daily News and the Southtown (Chicago) Economist in the early 1970s, when journalism jobs were opening to more women and minorities, and dramatic changes were taking place within the newspaper industry. As computers began replacing typewriters in the newsroom, she adapted to technologies that ultimately transformed reporting, editing, photography and printing processes.

In the late 1970s and ‘80s she was a reporter/ editor for the Lewisville (Texas) News-Advertiser and the Denton Record-Chronicle. As a horticultural journalism specialist, Clark served seven years as editor of Neil Sperry’s Gardens magazine, a regional Texas publication; and as associate editor of Carolina Gardener magazine in Greensboro, N.C.

Her articles and photos have won regional and national awards from the Texas Nursing Home Association, The Associated Press, United Press International and Garden Writers Association. Clark’s freelance writing has been published in:
Newspapers: Christian Science Monitor, San Antonio Express-News, Houston Chronicle, The Dallas Morning News, Dallas Times Herald Magazines: Horticulture, Texas Gardener, Dallas-Fort Worth Home and Garden, Neil Sperry’s Gardens. Green industry trade publications, 2002-08: Hines Nurseries, Lowes Home Improvement, Target Stores, Conard-Pyle (Servistar Roses), Horticultural Printers Ltd. Online: philanthropyjournal.com, toro.com Book chapters:
• “San Antonio: Our Story of 150 Years in the Alamo City” (Witte Museum entry), published by San Antonio Express-News/Trinity University (2015).
•Encyclopedia of Gardens: History and Design (Chicago Botanic Garden, 2001), the gardens at Milotice, Czech Republic.
• “Growing Fruits and Vegetables Organically” (Rodale Press, 1994), three chapters.

At Texas State she served three years as director of Mass Comm Week and co-chaired an IRE data journalism workshop. She received a 2014 Award for Excellence in Online Teaching. In her time at Texas State, she presented her research at conferences of the American Copy Editors Society and the Garden Writers Association.

She is the 2019 recipient of the Bess Whitehead Scott Scribes Scholarship in support of her WWII research project about Lidice, Czech Republic. Texas State SJMC first supported this project in 2017, paving the way for travel to Czech Republic in October 2017 and June 2018, enabling Clark to research and document the continuing story of Lidice, a Roman Catholic village destroyed in 1942 on orders of Adolf Hitler.

During her travels, she interviewed three elderly survivors who were children at the time of the Lidice atrocity. One of those survivors, Marie Dolezalova Supikova, testified at the Nuremburg Trials in Berlin following WWII. Upon Supikova’s death in March 2021, Clark was instrumental in writing her obituary for The New York Times.

Clark is the author of “Lidice Lives” at https://lidicelives.wp.txstate.edu/, a blog produced in conjunction with a 2017 Non-Tenure Track Faculty Workload Release granted by the Texas State University Faculty Senate. Her personal essay, "Lidice, remembered" was published in the 2018 edition of Ten Spurs, the literary journal of the annual Mayborn Literary Nonfiction Conference sponsored by the Frank W. Mayborn School of Journalism at the University of North Texas.

During 2020 and 2021, Clark presented Zoom programs about Lidice to Rotary Club Prague-International and to Wimberley and San Marcos Rotary Clubs.

Clark is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists, American Copy Editors Society, Investigative Reporters and Editors, Writers League of Texas, international Garden Writers Association, and Czechoslovak Society of Arts and Sciences.

Teaching Interests

Editing, news writing/reporting, feature writing, editorial/opinion writing, journalism history, environmental/science journalism

Research Interests

--Editing/reporting issues related to word choice, bias & stereotypes
--Ethnic studies; in particular, Czech history, immigration, culture and legends
--Female trailblazers in Texas horticulture and other American horticultural regions
--Ecological restoration of native prairies across the U.S.

Selected Scholarly/Creative Work

  • Cernota Clark, E. J. (2019, March 14). Meet the bollards. The Houston Chronicle. Retrieved from https://www.houstonchronicle.com/life/travel/destinations/article/Meet-the-bollards-wood-posts-on-Mustang-Island-13688730.php
  • Cernota Clark, E. J. (2018, August 20). Witte Museum Built By Coins & Bluebonnets. San Antonio Express-News Tricentennial Series:  Culture Category, Print Edition (No Byline), p. A7. Retrieved from https://www.expressnews.com/150years/culture/article/Witte-Museum-is-growing-with-the-city-6367754.php
  • Cernota Clark, E. J. (2018, July). Lidice, Remembered. Ten Spurs. Denton, Texas, United States: University of North Texas, Mayborn School of Journalism. Retrieved from https://www.themayborn.com/ten-spurs
  • Cernota Clark, E. J. (2018). “Lidice, Remembered.” In Ten Spurs.  Copyright 2018. (Vol. 12, pp. 27–33; author notes on pp. 127). Denton, Texas, United States of America: Ten Spurs is the literary nonfiction journal known as “The Best of the Best: Literary Nonfiction of The [2017] Mayborn Conference,” produced by The Frank W. and Sue Mayborn Graduate Institute of Journalism, University of North Texas. Retrieved from http://www.themayborn.com/ten-spurs/2018
  • Clark, E. J. (2017). Lidice lives (http://lidicelives.wp.txstate.edu/). San Marcos, TX, United States: Elizabeth Clark.

Selected Awards

  • Award / Honor Recipient: Scott Scribes Scholarship for Age 40 and Over, Bess Whitehead Scott Scholarship Fund. April 1, 2019 - April 30, 2019
  • Award / Honor Recipient: Personal note of appreciation, Ali Mumbach. 2017
  • Award / Honor Recipient: alumni appreciation letter, Kasandra Garza, KTSW news director. 2017
  • Award / Honor Recipient: Personal note of appreciation, Rey Palacios. December 2017
  • Award / Honor Recipient: Personal note of appreciation, Brianna Watkins, news editor, The University Star. December 2016 - January 2017

Selected Grants

  • Cernota Clark, Elizabeth June (Principal). Lidice, continuation of creative research project in U.S. and Czech Republic, SJMC, Texas State University. (Funded: June 7, 2018 - June 19, 2018). Grant.
  • Cernota Clark, Elizabeth June (Principal). Faculty travel grant to attend UNT’s Mayborn Literary Nonfiction Conference, Grapevine, Texas. (Funded: July 21, 2017 - July 23, 2017). Grant.
  • Cernota Clark, Elizabeth June (Principal). Online News Association (ONA), SJMC, Texas State University. (Funded: September 13, 2018). Grant.
  • Clark, Elizabeth June. Faculty travel grant to attend international Garden Writers Association symposium, including annual board of directors meeting, Pittsburgh. (Funded: 2014). Grant.
  • Clark, Elizabeth June. Faculty travel grants for three conferences: American Copy Editors Society (ACES), St. Louis; Investigative Reporters and Editors (IRE), San Antonio; Garden Writers Association, Quebec City, Canada. (Funded: 2013). Grant.

Selected Service Activities

Hachar Project/ Diversity Committee
September 2018-Present
Screening of "The Wall," a documentary produced by USANetwork about the border wall
September 13, 2018-Present
SJMC & IRE will host a Watchdog Workshop for professional journalists and a limited number of our students. IRE (Investigative Reporters and Editors) is a nonprofit journalism organization dedicated to improving the quality of investigative reporting.
September 2018-February 10, 2019
Mass Comm Week 2018
August 8, 2018-October 17, 2018
2018 media law presentation: narrated Powerpoint lecture for members
GWA: The Association for Garden Communicators
April 10, 2018