Melanie Daniel subject of second Faculty Senate no-confidence vote

April 30 — The Haskell Faculty Senate passed a second unanimous “vote of no confidence” resolution, this time declaring no confidence in Vice President of Academic Affairs (VPAA) Melanie Daniel. The resolution (No. 2021-02) echos many of the same concerns expressed in the previous no-confidence declaration in Univesity President Ronald Graham.

Faculty showed concerns that Daniel has removed faculty from decision-making processes, failed to formally engage with faculty senate, failed to provide basic communication, and has limited academic freedom and free speech through a now rescinded mandate.

University accreditation is also a concern, the resolution stating, “The participation in the Higher Learning Commission’s requirement of shared governance within colleges and universities is thereby compromised.” A spokesperson from the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) commented, “HLC is in regular communication with Haskell and continues to be updated on campus and governance issues.”

The resolution has been sent to Tony Dearman, Director of the Bureau of Indian Education (BIE). Dearman had sent investigators to the university following the previous no-confidence vote. Results from the investigation have not yet been released. Daniel, as the VPAA, would be a candidate for interim president should any action be taken.


  1. As students we are the consumer purchasing a good well run education, hoping to get the best technology and services from educators and administrators. This is an investment in ourselves and our future, which eventually benefits Haskell when a student is successful in the outside world with their tribes or elsewhere. The success of a students labels the school for more future students to want to go there. I work for my tribe and am also going to school full time. I have had the honor of knowing Madam Vice-President Daniel as she has taken the time to provide me with the knowledge I need to best approach a situation in a professional, respectful and ethical manner. She has taken the time to listen to me as a student and my concerns for my future. She understands how tribes operate and what we need to better ourselves. I truly believe she does has Haskell’s best interest at heart for improvement. Not everyone likes it, but there is always room for improvement. Both Faculty and Administrators need to understand that this bickering will hurt all your students. Try to resolve it like adults as our future and the future of Haskell could be at stake. So if that means holding some faculty accountable, so be it, as remember you work for the students and the future of the tribes. We appreciate you all as our professors, but sometimes change has to happen to improve us all. Melanie has been wonderful and hope that you all resolve this matter in a way that will not affect your students.

  2. Calm follows the storm.

    Hope level heads and competent investigators solve this problem quickly and fairly. Haskell has a place for Indian education, lets see it continued. James L Lee, DDS (ret), HS 1945-’49.

    James Lee

  3. These are systemic issues across the BIE, not just Haskell. REMOVE TONY DEARMAN. Our Native children deserve better than this.

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