Fisk University Business Department Welcomes Three New Faculty Members

From Left to Right: Ngozi Nnaji, MS, Dr. Sufyan Baksh, and Dr. Duncan Pelly

NASHVILLE, Tenn., Sept. 14, 2022— Fisk University is excited to welcome three new faculty members to its business department: Dr. Duncan Pelly, Dr. Sufyan Baksh, and Ngozi Nnaji, MS.

In recent years, the University’s business department has grown significantly as many students are coveting a career in the corporate world upon graduation. These three professors will add tremendous expertise to the business department, spanning a broad range of topics including entrepreneurship, management, fintech, marketing, risk management and insurance. With the additions of these outstanding faculty, Fisk will be positioned to develop new programs/concentrations and to pursue Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) accreditation in the coming years. The University looks forward to each of these individuals becoming an integral part of the Fisk Family as well as the Nashville business community.

Dr. Duncan Pelly will assume the Cal Turner Endowed Chair of Business. Dr. Pelly joins Fisk from McMurry University where he was the Department Chair and the Director for Center for Free Enterprise and Entrepreneurship and the International Business Programs. Prior to his tenure at McMurry, Dr. Pelly taught at California State University in Los Angeles and the EM Lyon Business School. Dr. Pelly has his undergraduate degrees from the University of Pennsylvania and his PhD from EM Lyon Business School in France. Dr. Pelly has an extensive publication record, which includes several awards and nominations such as the Best Book Award by the National Communication Association’s Ethnography Division (2021), and the Distinguished Book Award by Association for Business Communication (2021). Dr. Pelly’s areas of expertise include Corporate Strategy, Healthcare, Public Health, International Business and Corporate Business Transformation. Dr. Pelly has presented at top business conferences globally and is a recipient of a bronze star medal for his service in the United States Army.

Dr. Sufyan Baksh will join Fisk as the Executive Director of Innovation and Distinguished Professor of Business. Most recently, Dr. Baksh was a professor at The University of Scranton where he served as the program director for three separate programs (social media strategies, business communication, and CAS accelerated MBA programs). Dr. Baksh received his PhD in integrated marketing communication & advanced research methods from Texas Tech University. He has completed the post-doctoral bridge program in marketing and management from the Warrington College of Business at the University of Florida. Dr. Baksh has an MBA in entrepreneurship and international business from RIT and an MBA/MMS in marketing from RIMSR, and a BA in Economics & Commerce from Jai Hind College (Mumbai, India). He is a board member of Wahed Invest Inc. and has worked for LINOpinion PR (Mumbai, India) for four years, in addition to spending more than a decade in international Marketing and Finance. Dr. Baksh’s research in marketing, communication, and digital transformation business has been published in several internationally renowned peer-reviewed journals.

Ngozi Nnaji joins Fisk after a 20-year career in the insurance industry including at CNA Insurance Company and at Willis (currently Willis Towers Watson). Nnaji earned her Master of Science degree in Risk Management and Insurance from Florida State University. Nnaji is a Licensed Certified Insurance Consultant in addition to being a Licensed Insurance Producer (CT, FL, MA, ME, and NY, pending RI, NH, and GA). ​In 2019, Nnaji was awarded the Leadership Award by the State of Connecticut Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr Holiday Commission for her leadership and work in the insurance industry in the Greater Hartford area. In 2020, she received the Leading the Change and Hot 100 Awards for her work to help build a more diverse and equitable industry and for her overall impact. In 2021 and 2022, Nnaji received the Elite Woman of the Year recognition for her advocacy for women– particularly women of color– in a male-dominated field. In 2022 she was honored with the Global 100 award for being one of the most influential persons across the global insurance industry.





Fisk University is a highly ranked historically Black university, according to U.S. News and World Report, and is the oldest institution of higher learning in Nashville, Tennessee. Fisk’s outstanding faculty and students continue to enhance the University’s international reputation for academic excellence. Our scholars continue to make strides in all areas of the industry from Social Justice to the sciences. A Fisk education prepares our students to become beacons in servicing the community and well-rounded leaders and scholars in their respective fields. Fisk offers more than 20+ undergraduate and graduate programs in Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Clinical Psychology with a bridge Masters to Ph.D. programs through a partnership with Vanderbilt University. For more information, visit


Maya Brown
Executive Director of Marketing and Communications