ForeverMissed
Celebration of Life
Friday, August 7th, 2020, 1 p.m.
W. E. Lusain Funeral Home 
Chapel #3
249 6th Ave SW
Birmingham, AL 35211

Reflections of Life
Dr. Shirley Ann Williams-Scott was born on September 7, 1948 to the late Sarah Roberta Ellis and James Nolfris Williams in Birmingham, AL. She was the second of five children, the Fab 5, and was lovingly called Dear Dear by her grandchildren. Shirley was a very compassionate and devoted and person who was revered by so many for her wisdom and discernment.  Having accepted Christ at an early age, she was a faithful servant of God and spent her life encouraging others and bringing many to Christ. 

Shirley was known as a brilliant educator, scientific researcher and academic leader. After graduating Salutatorian of her senior class in 1966 from Fairfield Industrial High School, she went on to earn a B.S. in Biology from Miles College, a M.S. in Biology from Brown University, and a Ph.D. in Physiology and Biophysics from The University of Alabama at Birmingham. Throughout her undergraduate and graduate career, Shirley received several honors and awards. 

She began her teaching career at Miles College as a Graduate Laboratory Assistant and went on to teach various life sciences as an Instructor at Miles College and Lawson State Junior College. She later advanced to become an Assistant Professor of Biology at Jackson State University and later a Full Professor of Biology at Stillman College. While at Stillman, she served as Acting Chairperson of the Natural Science Division as well as the Faculty Representative to the 1987 White House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities. 

She became an Associate Professor of Research in the College of Pharmacy and Graduate Faculty at Xavier University in New Orleans, LA, and retired her teaching career after her tenure at Southern University in New Orleans (SUNO) where she was a Professor of Biology and served as the Chairperson of the Biology department. While at SUNO, she was instrumental in developing several partnerships including the Howard Hughes Internship Program in collaboration with the University of New Orleans and was Co-Director of the SUNO/LSUMC Collaborative Research Initiative in Stress Biology Program. She also developed SUNO’s first Marine Biology program and lab. 

Shirley developed a very extensive research career that included studies on Hypertension, Glucose Intolerance and Hyperinsulinemia, B-6 Deficiency, and Glucose Metabolism. Shirley collaborated with several institutions for her research including the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Argonne National Laboratory, National Science Foundation, Tulane University, and the Louisiana State University Medical Center. Shirley is the author or co-author of over 50 scientific publications.

In addition to her teaching and research, Shirley served as a Science Evaluator for the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) for Life Sciences, a grant reviewer for the Minority Research Center of Excellence Program (MRCE) and as chairperson of the Panel of the Research Improvement in Minority Institutions (RIMI) Program. She was also instrumental in starting the Robert Charles Blakes Senior Bible College and Theological Seminary and served as the school’s first Dean. 

She received several awards including the 1st Annual TORCH BEARERS AWARD from the Greater New Orleans Chapter of the Coalition of 100 Black Women, Inc., and a nomination to the Carnegie Foundation’s Advancement of Teaching U.S. Professors of the Year Program Award. 

Though her career was immense, Shirley always put her faith in God and her family first. She loved spending time with her children and especially her grandkids.  She also loved helping others and was a trusted confidant and friend. 

On Wednesday, July 29, 2020, Shirley was called to her heavenly home. Although we are brokenhearted by our loss, we find comfort in knowing she saw “Jesus’ face in peace.”

Shirley is preceded in death by her parents, Sarah Roberta Ellis and James Nolfris Williams; her sister, Portia Britton; her brother, Dwight Williams; and her nephew, David Britton. 

She leaves to cherish in her memories her daughters Portia Williams, Megan Williams and Jasmine Williams-Scott; her sons Jonathan Williams (Michelle) and Nolfris Williams (Charisma); her grandchildren, Jonathan Williams, II, Jason Williams, Isaiah Williams-Scott, Sarah Williams-Scott, Charon Burton, Robert Williams, Joshua Williams, Leah Thomas, Grace Williams, Jordan Williams, Stephen Williams and Keonnie Polion; her brothers, Marvin Williams and William Williams; sister (in-law) Linda Wallace; nieces, Rose Britton, Charmaine Ward, Angela Burns, Sherice Carter and Marvida Williams; nephews, Darryn Britton, William Williams, II, Ashton Williams, Julian Williams, Taylor Williams; life-long friend and her children’s God-Mother, Valorie Blackmon; and a host of other relatives and friends. 

Matthew 25:21 His lord said unto him, Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.







Posted by Kesha Brown on August 7, 2020
Ms. Shirley will be truly missed. She was a God fearing, powerful and faithful servant. I am praying for Megan and the family.
Posted by Lynn Gardner on August 7, 2020
Miss Shirley was such a gracious, humble woman, who carried a quiet authority, calmness and dignity. Such a lovely woman who was not afraid to stand for justice wherever it was lacking. Reading her accomplishments you cannot help but be completely blown away by the depth of her knowledge and abilities. And we already miss that sweet smile!!!  Eternal blessings are yours, my friend.  
Posted by Jennifer Addington on August 6, 2020
I don't know quite what to say except we miss her so much already.  Shirley was a quiet storm spiritually and intellectual, and yet such a breath of sweet air! Christ love was present in her eyes and smile. We are all better because God placed her in our lives..
Praying for comfort and God's peace to the family. 
Posted by Tammie Daugherty on August 6, 2020
Ms. Shirley, I will greatly miss you! You were a strong woman of God. You were always giving me words of encouragement, that I will always remember and live by! I am so thankful to God, that I got to know you.
Posted by Marian Walker on August 6, 2020
An awesome woman of God whose calm demeanor and strong presence will be greatly missed. Rest well Miss Shirley. <3
Posted by Jane Ohlman on August 6, 2020
Miss Shirley, I will miss you, your powerful spirit, and your kind heart. 
Posted by Theresa Pugh on August 6, 2020
It was an honor and privilege to know Miss Shirley. Whenever I was in her presence peace and strength and power exuded from her. She will truly be missed. Rest Well Miss Shirley
Posted by Sarah Neely on August 6, 2020
Ms. Shirley was an absolute GEM, especially in the neighborhood of Fairfield and at Church of the Reconciler. She always had a smile to offer, was an amazing grandmother, and a true servant of the Lord. Her calm demeanor and ready encouragement were a blessing to many and she will be dearly missed.
Posted by Ola M Oden Cogman on August 6, 2020
So sorry to hear of Shirley passing, She was such a loving person and had a sweet sweet spirit,and always a beautiful smile.Shirley will truly be miss,but we will keep her beautiful smile and kind words in our heart. Praying for the family.

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Recent Tributes
Posted by Kesha Brown on August 7, 2020
Ms. Shirley will be truly missed. She was a God fearing, powerful and faithful servant. I am praying for Megan and the family.
Posted by Lynn Gardner on August 7, 2020
Miss Shirley was such a gracious, humble woman, who carried a quiet authority, calmness and dignity. Such a lovely woman who was not afraid to stand for justice wherever it was lacking. Reading her accomplishments you cannot help but be completely blown away by the depth of her knowledge and abilities. And we already miss that sweet smile!!!  Eternal blessings are yours, my friend.  
Posted by Jennifer Addington on August 6, 2020
I don't know quite what to say except we miss her so much already.  Shirley was a quiet storm spiritually and intellectual, and yet such a breath of sweet air! Christ love was present in her eyes and smile. We are all better because God placed her in our lives..
Praying for comfort and God's peace to the family. 
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