Belk College remembers Stephen Jolly

Tuesday, February 8, 2022
Retired accounting faculty member won the 1980 teaching excellence award.

UNC Charlotte’s Belk College of Business is fondly remembering Stephen A. Jolly, an award-winning faculty member who left a lasting impact on thousands of accounting students during his 26-year tenure. 

Jolly, 75, who taught accounting from 1975-2001, passed away on Feb. 2. In 1980, he received the NCNB (now Bank of America) Award for Teaching Excellence, one of the University’s highest honors. 

“Dr. Jolly was one of the Belk College’s accounting legends,” said Jennifer Troyer, dean of the Belk College. “Hired by pioneering accounting faculty member Tom Turner, his work with students helped to elevate the reputation of the Turner School of Accountancy. He will be remembered for his steadfast commitment to helping students succeed.” 

A native of Shelby and Vietnam veteran, Jolly was hired as a visiting assistant professor in 1975 soon after completing his doctorate in accounting from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He primarily taught financial accounting. 

In addition, he served as chair of the University Curriculum Committee for four years and was a member of the Faculty Executive Committee for four years. He also was a partner in the Kohari and Jolly Accounting Firm.

Survivors include his wife, Cheryl C. Jolly, who worked as a nurse in the University’s Student Health Center, and daughter Amy Jolly Kennedy ‘10, UNC Charlotte’s assistant director of alumni affairs. 

He participated in the Living History Project last summer for the Belk College’s 50th anniversary, speaking proudly of the students he taught over the years. 

“Many of our graduates went on to become CFOs and CEOs of even Fortune 100 companies,” Jolly recalled. “We've had quite a few that became head of the practice of offices.” 

A Celebration of Life will take place at UNC Charlotte on May 24.

If you are so moved, the Jolly family asks that, in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the Stephen A. and Cheryl C. Jolly Family Scholarship

Hartsell Funeral Homes is serving the family.