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In Memoriam: Elaine Salo

Sept. 8 Celebration of Life to remember Elaine Salo

Elaine Rosa Salo, associate professor of political science and international relations and of women and gender studies at the University of Delaware, died Aug. 13, 2016, at Christiana Care Hospital after a battle with cancer. She was 54.

A service celebrating her life will be held at 5 p.m., Thursday, Sept. 8, in Gore Recital Hall of the Roselle Center for the Arts on UD’s Newark campus. The doors will open at 4:15 p.m. A reception will follow.

A service also will be held at 11 a.m., Friday, Sept. 9, at St. Thomas Episcopal Church, 276 S. College Ave., Newark, with the Rev. Deacon Cecily Sawyer Harmon officiating.

Prof. Salo joined the UD faculty in 2014 with a joint appointment and taught classes in water politics in the global South, politics of transitional societies, and gender and politics. Before coming to Delaware, she was director of the Institute for Women’s and Gender Studies at the University of Pretoria in South Africa.

In her relatively short time at UD, colleagues said, Prof. Salo became engaged in the campus and the community, where she was extremely well-liked and highly respected.

“Elaine was an exceptional colleague and friend. Her kindness, brilliance, warmth and humor inspired, as well as her unflinching resistance to injustice and constant bucking of the status quo,” said Pascha Bueno-Hansen, associate professor of women and gender studies. “She had so much life in her, so much seemingly endless capacity to give. During her brief time here at UD, she touched many hearts, mine included, and I will be eternally grateful.”

James M. Jones, professor of psychological and brain sciences and of black American studies and director of UD’s Center for the Study of Diversity, described Prof. Salo as “a wonderful human being, a true champion of the underclass, marginalized and oppressed, and a passionate supporter of academic engagement with communities of color.”

“I was delighted when she accepted our offer to join us at UD as a top candidate of the Center for the Study of Diversity cluster hire,” Jones said. “She worked on behalf of the center until the end, with professionalism and passion for her students, colleagues and the community.”

Prof. Salo was born in Kimberley, South Africa, the third child of the late Rose and Edgar “Pax” Salo.  She received a bachelor’s degree with honors from University of Cape Town, a master’s degree in international development from Clark University and a doctorate in anthropology from Emory University.

Her research focused on gender, gender and identity, violence, social construction of masculinities, feminism, sexualtiy, patriarchy and women’s rights.

She is survived by her husband, Colin Miller, director of the College of Arts and Sciences Global Arts Program at UD, and their children, Miles Miller and Jessica Salo, all of Newark; and brothers Bertram Salo of Cape Town and Kenneth Salo (Faranak Miraftab) of Champaign, Illinois.

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