Karen Brower Rhodes joined the Communications department in September 2022 as Director of Advancement Marketing; in December 2022 she became the Interim Assistant Vice President for Marketing and Communications. After graduating from Gardner-Webb University with a bachelor’s degree in communication studies, she worked briefly as a journalist before making the move to higher education. She later returned to Gardner-Webb to earn her MBA.

Her career experience includes developing and implementing comprehensive marketing and public relations programs, including branding, media relations, communications, advertising, publications, content creation, social media management and capital campaign support. She previously served as Senior Director of Marketing and Communications at Sherman College of Chiropractic. Her work has been recognized by the National Federation of Press Women and the Council for Advancement and Support of Education.

Karen is a 2015 Leadership Spartanburg graduate and serves on the boards of directors for Project R.E.S.T. and the College News Association of the Carolinas (CNAC). Project R.E.S.T. named her Board Member of the Year in 2020, and that same year, CNAC honored her accomplishments in public relations in higher education. Karen’s time outside Converse is spent with her husband, Zach, and their teenage daughter, Laney.


  • Bachelor of Science in Communication Studies. Gardner-Webb University
  • Master of Business Administration, Gardner-Webb University