Texas Tech University

In Memoriam: Nancy J. Bell, Human Development and Family Sciences Colleague

Ashley Brister

December 21, 2020

Nancy J Bell TTU

Human Sciences remembers former faculty member of 43 years

The College of Human Sciences is deeply saddened by the loss of Nancy J. Bell, a professor in Human Development and Family Sciences (HDFS), who died on Dec. 1, 2020 at the age of 79.

Bell obtained her B.A. in 1963, her M.A. in 1971, and her Ph.D. from Northwestern University in 1973 before beginning her role in HDFS at Texas Tech University, a role she held from 1973-2016. Bell also served as department chair for several years during her time at Texas Tech.

Undergraduate Program Director, Stephanie Shine, Ph.D. shares a few fond memories of Bell.

"She mentored graduate students and faculty alike as she was a perceptive listener and an incisive questioner," Shine said. "You could be sure of getting a clear-eyed response if you went to seek her opinion. I think Dr. Bell had a deeply humanistic and empathic perspective that informed her work and her interactions in the department. She also had an appreciation of the absurd and a wonderful uncurrent of humor that permeated the perspectives she shared with students and colleagues."

While at Texas Tech she was committed to principles of academic integrity and was an advocate for qualitative research. She mentored students in the College of Human Sciences and directed student internships in the community.

Some of her many accomplishments during her tenure include the establishment of the Nancy J Bell Faculty Excellence in Mentoring Award and holding a rotating professorship in the department which was designed to promote high-quality research. She also had many research publications and co-edited the book Adolescent Risk-Taking with her husband, Robert Bell.

Bell was beloved and will be greatly missed by her students, colleagues, friends, and family.