Ellen DeGeneres has come under fire from a man in her Louisiana hometown, who has accused the star of bullying him as a pre-teen.

Ben Gravolet has come forward with allegations of harassment against DeGeneres, amid an investigation into workplace practices at The Ellen DeGeneres Show following complaints about the toxic environment behind the scenes.

Gravolet has alleged he was a target of DeGeneres' torment when she worked at his mother's recruitment agency in the late 1970s.

"I would dread going to (my mum's) office to see her after school or on a day if I was sick and Ellen was there," the 52-year-old father of three and New Orleans marketing agency vice president told DailyMailTV.

"She would criticise my weight. I would try to do homework in the office, she'd call me stupid, she'd call me fat. She would criticise my clothes," he recalled.

Gravolet admitted he is still scarred by one alleged insult he received from DeGeneres.

"One incident stands out in my mind," he added, "I was sitting beside her desk. I was drawing, and she criticised the drawings. She said, 'I guess that would look nice if you could draw.'"

Gravolet said watching DeGeneres' rise to fame perplexed him: "All I could think was, 'She must be an incredible actor because she was one of the most vile people I've ever met in my life'"

Meanwhile, Gravolet's mother, Tana Robinson, told the outlet she thought DeGeneres was 'extremely rude', but had no idea she had allegedly tormented her son.

"I think I probably fired her," Tana said, "Had I known that was going on, I'd have punched her and then fired her. A horrible person does that to an 11-year-old boy."