In Memoriam: Ella Lee Kelley, 1948-2015

ELLAkelleyElla Kelley, a long-time faculty member and administrator at Southern University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, died on July 9 in Baton Rouge. She was 66 years old.

Dr. Kelley joined the faculty at Southern University in 1983. She served as chair of the chemistry department at the university and most recently was associate vice chancellor for academic affairs and dean of the Dolores Margaret Richard Spikes Honors College. Dr. Kelley and her husband Diola Bagayoko, chair of the department of physics at Southern University, co-founded the Timbuktu Academy in 1990. The academy seeks to interest middle and high school students in STEM disciplines.

Dr. Kelley was a native of Monroe, Louisiana. She was valedictorian of her high school class and went on to earn a bachelor’s degree in chemistry at Northeast Louisiana University, now known as the University of Louisiana, Monroe. Dr. Kelley earned a master’s degree in chemistry at Southern University and a Ph.D. in biochemistry at Louisiana State University.


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  1. She was a helpful and caring soul, a credit to our race!!!!!!!


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