Ellen DeGeneres and Portia de Rossi in Rwanda where conservation campus is dedicated in Ellen’s name


Ellen DeGeneres and Portia de Rossi in Rwanda where conservation campus is dedicated in Ellen’s name … as it’s revealed talk show host had huge ratings in series finale

Ellen DeGeneres is living her best life after moving on from her talk show.

DeGeneres, 64, and wife Portia de Rossi, 49, were seen in the African country of Rwanda on Tuesday for the dedication of the Ellen DeGeneres Campus, a $15 million project for The Ellen Fund in conjunction with the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund and the MASS Design Group.

At the dedication ceremony, DeGeneres described the campus as ‘incredible,’ detailing her longtime passion toward the area and conservation causes.

The latest: Ellen DeGeneres, 64, and wife Portia de Rossi, 49, were seen Tuesday in the African country of Rwanda for the dedication of the Ellen DeGeneres Campus of the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund

The latest: Ellen DeGeneres, 64, and wife Portia de Rossi, 49, were seen Tuesday in the African country of Rwanda for the dedication of the Ellen DeGeneres Campus of the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund

‘When I was a kid, I used to dream of coming here,’ DeGeneres said, adding that late conservationist Dian Fossey was a hero to her, ‘and her dedication to gorillas changed the world.

‘The Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund has been here for over 50 years,’ she said. ‘Thanks to their work, the commitment of the Rwandan government and the efforts of many conservation groups here today, the mountain gorilla population has gone from 300 in the entire world to over 1000.’

DeGeneres noted the multiple objectives of the campus, which is located over 12 acres in Volcanoes National Park: ‘This campus is so important for gorillas, but it’s also more than that.

‘It’s teaching school children about conservation. It’s educating a future generation of scientists. It’s a model for others to follow, from the sustainable architecture to the community’s involvement.’

de Rossi spoke at the dedication of a the $15 million project The Ellen Fund worked on in conjunction with the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund and the MASS Design Group

de Rossi spoke at the dedication of a the $15 million project The Ellen Fund worked on in conjunction with the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund and the MASS Design Group

(L-R) Dr. Tara Stoinski, Prime Minister of Rwanda Édouard Ngirente, DeGeneres and de Rossi posed at the dedication of the campus

(L-R) Dr. Tara Stoinski, Prime Minister of Rwanda Édouard Ngirente, DeGeneres and de Rossi posed at the dedication of the campus 

Visitors examined exhibits at the facility, which first opened its doors in February

Visitors examined exhibits at the facility, which first opened its doors in February 

Leonardo DiCaprio was among the donors who helped fund the conservation center, namely a computer lab and 360-degree theater, The Fossey Fund said

Leonardo DiCaprio was among the donors who helped fund the conservation center, namely a computer lab and 360-degree theater, The Fossey Fund said 

The Fossey Fund’s CEO, Dr. Tara Stoinski, said that the campus named in honor of the talk show host is the realization of ‘a 20-year dream to create a purpose-built facility to accelerate scientific research and on-the-ground conservation work,’ as well as ‘a place for students, researchers, tourists and community members to learn and become inspired to a lifetime of conservation.’

MASS Design founder Michael Murphy said that the ‘campus is not just an investment in architecture but is a testament to the need for new infrastructures and institutions that change the way we operate in the world,’ adding that ‘conservation will change because of this campus.’

Other notable names present for the dedication ceremony included Rwanda Prime Minister Rt. Hon. Edouard Ngirente and Rwanda Development Board CEO Clare Akamanzi.

According to The Fossey Fund, construction commenced on the campus in 2019 and the center was opened in February, and has welcomed more than 5,000 visitors in the months since.

DeGeneres finished her talk show Ellen with a well-rated 1.8 rating among adults 18-49 in her May 26 series finale, according to Nielsen statistics

DeGeneres finished her talk show Ellen with a well-rated 1.8 rating among adults 18-49 in her May 26 series finale, according to Nielsen statistics

DeGeneres welled up with tears on the finale of her talk show

DeGeneres welled up with tears on the finale of her talk show 

The talk show host received a standing ovation as she wrapped up her series, which first hit the air in 2003

The talk show host received a standing ovation as she wrapped up her series, which first hit the air in 2003 

Leonardo DiCaprio was among the donors who helped fund the conservation center, namely a computer lab and 360-degree theater, The Fossey Fund said.

The news came amid reports that DeGeneres finished her talk show Ellen with a well-rated 1.8 rating among adults 18-49 in her May 26 series finale, Variety reported after reviewing Nielsen statistics. 

The total, which marked the highest-rated episode of the season, was 30 percent higher than the previous year’s rating, and 64 percent higher than the previous week’s total, according to the outlet.

The show had a ratings surge in the two weeks toward its final broadcast, as it had a 44 percent rise in viewership with a daily growth average of 568,000 viewers, the outlet reported.

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