About Me

Bruce dePyssler is a professor of communications at NC Central University. Trained in cultural anthropology, he now teaches advanced reporting, communication theory, photojournalism and desktop publishing/graphic design.

He earned his MA in communication and development, examining the economics of global tourism. His PhD was earned in cultural anthropology with research that examined nationalist discourse at three moments in Indian history: khadi cloth and the nationalist movement; radio for agricultural development in the 1950s; and a scooter advertising campaign in the liberalized economy of the 1980s that plays on nationalist sentiment.

The student newspaper he advises has won over 260 state, regional and national awards under his guidance. In 2005 he received the NCCU Chancellor's Award for this outstanding contributions to the University. In 2009 the National Conference of Editorial Writers awarded him the Barry Bingham Award for "an educator’s outstanding efforts to encourage minority students in the field of journalism." In 2010 dePyssler was awarded the top teaching award in the UNC University System, the Board of Governor's Award.

Working with students under the umbrella of the Bull City Doc Squad, dePyssler is the director/producer of numerous documentaries, including "Upbuilding Whitted," a documentary about the building that served as Durham's first high school serving African Americans and which later became Whitted Juniior High, and "In the House," a documentary about the Durham Divas, a group of senior African American cheerleaders, "Nothing but Love in God's Water," a documentary about Durham's historic White Rock Baptist Church, "Judge Joe - A Life of Calm Purpose," a documentary profiling the life of the Honorable Joe L. Webster, Magistrate Judge for the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina.

"Nothing but Love in God's Water" was bronze winner at WorldFest Houston, a selection at the 2018 Hayti Heritage Film Festival, the 2019 Longleaf Film Festival, and the 2019 Northeast Mountain Film Festival, where it was also a finalist. "Judge Joe - A Life of Calm Purpose" was also selected and a finalist at the 2019 Northeast Mountain Film Festival.

His most recent work (with colleague Michael Pearce) "A Song for Fallen Memories" tells the story of a musician's work at a retirement community playing music to individuals with memory loss. The film is an official selection at the following film festivals: Wake Forest FF, Longleaf FF, NC FF, Tryon International FF, Northeast Mountain FF. It has been awarded The Neuse River Award at the Wake Forest, the Most Inspirational Documentary at the Triangle NC FF, and Best Music Score, at the Triangle NC FF.

Other video/documentary work includes a tribute to former Durham mayor Bill Bell for the Howard Alumni Association. A specialty of his work is documenting live music and recording sessions.

He is currently working on a documentary about T-Bone Slim (1880-1842), an early  columnist and songwriter for the Industrial Workers of the World (aka Wobblies), and a drone photography project documenting all 110 miles of North Carolina's Haw River from its source to Mermaid Point (where the Haw merges with the Deep River to become the Cape Fear River).

brucedepyssler@gmail.com / 919.951.4088