Charles Ellis Jr., Ph.D., has been named chair of the College of Public Health and Health Professions’ department of speech, language, and hearing sciences. He comes to UF in July from East Carolina University, where he is a professor and director of doctoral education in the department of communication sciences and disorders. He also serves as the research core director for the East Carolina University Center for Health Disparities.
As a 2005 graduate of PHHP’s doctoral program in rehabilitation science, Ellis is well-acquainted with UF’s long history of excellence in speech-language pathology and audiology.
“I have benefitted greatly from my training in the UF RSD Ph.D. program,” Ellis said. “I entered the program with 10 years of clinical experience as a speech-language pathologist and the wide range of program experiences prepared me for a successful career in academia. The chair position attracted me because of the opportunity to return to the UF environment, which is stimulating and rewarding.”
In his research, Ellis has focused on understanding outcomes associated with adult neurologically-based disorders of communication, and factors that contribute to the lack of equity in service provision and the outcome disparities that exist among African Americans and other underrepresented minority groups.
A Fellow of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, Ellis was awarded ASHA’s Certificate of Recognition for Special Contribution in Multicultural Affairs in 2011.
The UF department of speech, language, and hearing sciences has a strong cadre of faculty at all career stages, Ellis said, and he plans to build upon the department’s strengths to align with UF’s international reputation in research and teaching.
“The department’s vision will extend well beyond department/programs rankings (which are important) and establish a brand within the disciplines of speech-language pathology and audiology that is known for quality education, development of leaders and great citizens in the field, and world-class research that is integrated across the department’s programs,” Ellis said.
Ellis received bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Georgia and spent 10 years in clinical practice as a licensed and certified speech-language pathologist. After earning his doctoral degree, he received training in health outcomes disparities at the Medical University of South Carolina Center for Health Disparities Research and the Health Services Research & Development, Targeted Research Enhancement Program at the Ralph H. Johnson VA Medical Center in Charleston.
His most recent research has emphasized telepractice and economic issues associated with communication disorders; specifically, the costs and cost-effectiveness of speech-language pathology interventions. He has authored or co-authored more than 125 peer-reviewed journals articles, five book chapters and has over 150 presentations to his credit related to Parkinson’s disease, stroke, traumatic brain injury, and health disparities and minority health issues.