Carolee Dodge Francis headshot

Carolee Dodge Francis

Professor, Undergraduate Program Chair, Ecology of Human Well-Being Professor
Civil Society and Community Studies Department; Community and Nonprofit Leadership Major
Office 4151
“There will be a play of differences, inevitably, through which meanings can emerge. There will be, there ought to be, moments of recognition, moments of doubt. But there will also be endless interrogation as diverse persons strive to create themselves in their freedom.”

–Maxine Greene, Releasing the Imagination


I strive to intertwine my community engagement and research scholarship as a reflection of my cultural understandings within a contemporary context that is focused upon the well-being of Indigenous populations. I have over 30 years’ work experience in community and public health, health education, program development, evaluation, curriculum adaptation, and qualitative and community-based participatory research within urban and rural American Indian communities nationwide.

For the last eight years, I have been one of four national Principal Investigators funded under the High School NIH-NIDDK (R25) Short Term Research Experience for Underrepresented Persons (STEP-UP) funding stream. I continue in this capacity, aiming to increase and strengthen the shortage of American Indian/Alaska Natives pursuing the fields of biomedical, behavioral, and clinical research in the areas of diabetes, endocrinology, metabolism, nutrition, and obesity.

I am a member of a global evaluation committee EvalIndigenous. This global committee focuses upon ensuring that policies and evaluation practices for Indigenous peoples are based on equity, fairness, and justice. The United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (2007) frames our work, moving from an evidence-based focus towards a shared global understanding of ethical and cultural practices for Indigenous peoples and our rights within the field of evaluation.

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EdD, Educational Leadership University of St. Thomas (Saint Paul, MN)
MA, University of St. Thomas (Saint Paul, MN)
BS, Communications, University of Minnesota


National Indian Education Association
American Evaluation Association
Canadian Evaluation Society
American Public Health Association

Community Issues and Action Capstone (CSCS600)

Dodge Francis, C., Bareng-Antolin., N., & Tran, K. (2019). Balancing cultural and science identity frameworks for American Indian/Alaska Native high school students: A summer research journey. Charlotte, NC, Informational Age Publishing. 169-187. ISBN: 978- 1-64113-605-1 & 978-1-64113-6075. (Book chapter).

Marquez, E., Dodge Francis, C., Gerstenberger, S. (2019). Where I live: A qualitative analysis of renters living in poor housing. Health & Place, 58 1-7.

Bowman, N., Dodge Francis C., (2018). Culturally responsive Indigenous evaluation and tribal governments: Understanding the relationship. New Directions for Evaluation, 159, pp. 17–31.

Dodge Francis, C., Chino, M. (2012). Type 2 diabetes science and American Indian/Alaska Native culture: creating a national K–12 curriculum prevention strategy for Native youth. Diabetes Spectrum Feb; 25(1): 23-25.