Lonnie E. Duncan obituary

Contact: Cheryl Roland
Photo of Dr. Lonnie E. Duncan.

Lonnie Duncan

KALAMAZOO—Dr. Lonnie E. Duncan, associate professor of counselor education and counseling psychology at Western Michigan University, died suddenly Dec. 31. He was 46.

Duncan was co-training director of WMU's counseling psychology doctoral program and served the local community as a member of the Kalamazoo Public Schools Board of Education. He was stricken New Year's Eve while attending church services.

Lonnie Duncan

A faculty member at WMU since 2000, Duncan was licensed as a psychologist in Michigan and, in addition to teaching, worked as a psychological supervisor for professionals in the community. He was nationally recognized for his work in mental health treatment with racial minorities, including on such topics as help-seeking, assessment, treatment, training and supervision.

Duncan was the recipient of a WMU 2013 Excellence in Diversity Award for the work he did to initiate, develop and maintain his department's focus on multiculturalism, and was singled out in particular for his work in recruiting students from historically black colleges and universities to WMU's graduate programs. In addition, he won the 2011 Trailblazer Award from the College of Education and Human Development for his work, with colleague Dr. Susan Piazza, to examine after-school literacy programs for struggling readers and provide additional service to youth who have incarcerated parents. And in 2009, he was awarded the Griselda Daniel Award by WMU's Graduate Students of Color for his commitment to diversity and inclusion.

In August 2013, Duncan was the unanimous selection from among five Kalamazoo candidates interviewed by the Kalamazoo School Board, to fill out a term that was set to expire at the end of 2014.

Prior to coming to Kalamazoo, Duncan was a staff psychologist at Northern Illinois University and with a family service agency in DeKalb, Ill. He also was an instructor in NIU's Black Studies Department and with the Department of Psychology at Kishwaukee College.

Duncan earned his bachelor's degree at Central State University in 1989 and his master's and doctoral degrees from Ball State University in 1992 and 1996, respectively.


Funeral services are set for noon Monday, Jan. 6, with a family hour beginning at 11 a.m. at Galilee Baptist Church, 1216 N. Westnedge Ave., Kalamazoo. Visitation is set for 6 to 8 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 5, at Christ Temple Church 3498 N. 26th St., Kalamazoo. Funeral arrangements are being handled by Whitley Memorial Funeral Home of Kalamazoo, which is accepting guestbook tributes online at whitleymemorialfuneralhome.com.