Franklin Ellis headshot

Franklin Ellis

Associate Dean and Director of the Center for Inclusive Communities / Special Assistant to the President for Diversity and Belonging

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Franklin Ellis’ career spans more than 20 years in higher education, beginning in residence life and later transitioning to multicultural services, with diversity and inclusion efforts always at the core of his work.

Ellis, from Florence, South Carolina, earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology and philosophy from Coastal Carolina University and a master’s degree in mental health counseling from Wright State University and licensure as a professional counselor in Dayton, Ohio. He earned his doctorate in marriage and family therapy from the Chicago School of Professional Psychology in Westwood, California.

Ellis is a relationship expert trained to work with singles, couples, families, and teams. He specializes in multicultural counseling with a concentration on demonstrating to non-Black (or non-African American) people how to serve Black or African American people within the mental health system to aid in making the process more familiar and familial and to encourage higher numbers of Black and African American people to utilize mental health services.

Inclusion and belonging work are Ellis’ passions. He advocates for equality and equity for all individuals with institutionally marginalized identities by creating spaces that affirm them while aiding in the education and growth of those with institutionally dominant identities.


  • Psy.D., The Chicago School of Professional Psychology
  • M.S., Wright State University
  • B.A., Coastal Carolina University