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Sala Nanyanzi Senkayi is an African scientist and physicist at the United States Environmental Protection Agency. She was the first Ugandan-born woman to win the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers.

Sala Senkayi
Alma materTexas A&M University
University of Texas at Arlington
AwardsPECASE ('17)
Scientific career
InstitutionsUnited States Environmental Protection Agency

Early life and educationEdit

Senkayi is the daughter of Abu Senkayi and Sunajeh Senkayi. Her family are from Butambala District in Uganda. Her father was an environmental scientist and worked at Texas A&M University as a research scientist from 1977.[1][2] Senkayi studied chemistry at Texas A&M University. She joined the University of Texas at Arlington, earning two more Bachelor's degrees, a Master's degree and PhD in environmental science. Her PhD thesis considered the association between childhood leukaemia and proximity to airports in Texas.[3] She found that benzene emissions were a predictor for childhood leukaemia.[3] During her graduate studies Muwenda Mutebi II of Buganda and Sylvia Nnaginda visited her in Texas.[4]


Senkayi joined the United States Environmental Protection Agency in 2007.[5] She works with local children in schools and colleges talking about the environment.[4] She initiated the EPA Converses with Students webcast, an opportunity for children to speak to scientists who worked on environmental protection on Earth Day.[6][7] Her research focuses on water quality protection and she is the Water Quality Division Quality Assurance Officer.[8] In 2017 Senkayi was awarded the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers for her "transformative" community outreach and research.[8][9]


  1. ^ "Abu Lwanga Senkayi Celebrates 40 Years of Professional Excellence in Environmental Science". 24-7 Press Release Newswire. Retrieved 2018-12-26.
  2. ^ Moderator, Marquis Who's Who (2018-08-14). "Abu Lwanga Senkayi, Ph.D." Marquis Who's Who Top Scientists. Retrieved 2018-12-26.
  3. ^ a b "Investigation of an association between childhood leukemia incidences and airports in Texas". Atmospheric Pollution Research. 5 (2): 189–195. 2014-04-01. doi:10.5094/APR.2014.023. ISSN 1309-1042.
  4. ^ a b "Meet The First Ugandan-American PhD Female Environmental Scientist In Dallas – Dr. Sala Senkayi | Welcome to the Ugandan Diaspora News Online". Retrieved 2018-12-26.
  5. ^ "Employee Profile of Sala Senkayi — General Physical Scientist". Retrieved 2018-12-26.
  6. ^ US EPA, OA (2015-07-30). "EPA Converses with Students Webcasts". US EPA. Retrieved 2018-12-26.
  7. ^ "WEEKLY eNEWS: Events, Grants/Awards, Workshops, Webinars, Volunteer Opportunities, Resources | Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries". Retrieved 2018-12-26.
  8. ^ a b Ph.D, Samuel Muwanguzi. "Youthful Dr. Sala Senkayi smashes glass ceiling, wins top US science award". Retrieved 2018-12-26.
  9. ^ "President Obama Honors Federally-Funded Early-Career Scientists". 2017-01-09. Retrieved 2018-12-26.