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Pauline A. Ellison

July 19, 2022


Pauline Allen Ellison, 98, of Arlington, Virginia died surrounded by loved ones at her home on July 19, 2022. Pauline was a vibrant, productive, and well-loved 98 years young.

She was born in Iron Gate, Virginia in 1924 and attended Watson High School in Covington, Virginia, where she graduated with honors as class valedictorian. She also attended Howard University and American University, graduating with a Master's degree in Public Administration and subsequently receiving several honorary doctorate degrees.

For nearly 50 years, she was married to Dr. Oscar Ellison Jr., a trailblazing physician who helped integrate numerous medical facilities throughout Northern Virginia. Pauline lived her life with grace, elegance, and dignity. Her abiding faith in God and willingness to give of herself to help those in need led her to a lifetime of service in her Arlington community; she also successfully pursued public service on a national and international scale. Pauline was a distinguished woman of many firsts: she was one of the first women of color to serve as Director of Personnel for a federal agency; she chaired and served on the Arlington County Civil Service Commission and as Vice-Chair of the Arlington Community Foundation; she was named one of the most influential African Americans in numerous years and was often selected as the only woman to participate in White House civil rights summits; she served as the Sixth National President of the prestigious Links, Inc., and was a founding and active member of the Arlington Chapter; she also founded the Northern Virginia Chapter of Jack and Jill of America with a focus on nurturing young African American children through leadership development, volunteerism, and philanthropy. Pauline received numerous awards, including Arlington's "Woman of the Year" Award; the NAACP's Hero Award, and a "Living Legend" Award from her own Mount Zion Baptist Church.

Pauline is survived by her three children – Oscar Ellison, III, M.D., Paula Michele Ellison, J.D., and Karla Ellison Hoffman, J.D. – her brother, William Allen, Jr, sisters-in-law, Carolyn Allen and Geraldine Allen, six grandchildren, a host of nieces and nephews, and many lifelong friends.



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Interment at Quantico National Cemetery at a later date

Memorial Services Will Be Held At A Later Date

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