1986 – 2021

Elissa Williams, BS Chemistry ’08, MS Chemistry ’10, PhD Chemistry ’14

June 23, 1986 – September 9, 2021

Dr. Elissa Heather Williams was a brilliant scientist, revered friend and loved one to her community. She graduated from George Mason University with her PhD in Chemistry in 2014, providing her time and knowledge to many chemistry students by tutoring at the Chemistry Department tutoring center and helping classmates figure out their homework assignments.  Because she was so organized and hardworking, she oversaw scheduling for both the tutoring center and the testing center for several years.

An accomplished woman, Elissa worked as electronics engineer at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center supporting the development of detectors. A passionate woman in many fields, Elissa was an avid skier and hiker who drove far and wide to find the best white slopes with her beloved car, the Audi RS3. She is also an active part of the D.C.-area car community who has brightened up car meet events with her infectious laughter. Elissa’s amazing soul, spirit, and laughter will be missed by her friends and family, but we know she is driving off to the great heavens above to be the angel she always was.

Donations in Elissa’s honor can be directed to the Elissa Williams Memorial Scholarship Fund, which was established in 2022 within the College of Science. These gifts provide scholarship assistance to graduate level chemistry students. Students will be awarded this scholarship on the basis of academic merit and can be in-state or out-of-state, as well as part-time or full-time students. Please indicate “In memory of Elissa Williams” in the Additional Comments section of the giving form.

For more information on this fund or additional ways to support it, please contact Lesley Irminger, manager of operations, alumni and constituent engagement, at or 703-993-1467.