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Venida Chenault currently serves as Vice President of Academic Affairs at Haskell Indian Nations University, a national center for American Indian education and cultural preservation. As Chief Academic Officer, Ms. Chenault oversees budgets, grant proposals, faculty, and staff within the Department of Academic Affairs. In addition, she supervises deans and directors of the College of Arts and Sciences, professional schools, and two academic support centers. An education professional dedicated to advancing academic opportunities for American Indian students, Venida Chenault has received numerous awards for her service, including the Delta Kappa Gamma Society International Award in 2006 and the Haskell Alumnus of the Year Award in 2009. 

Before assuming an executive role at the university, Venida Chenault served as a longtime faculty member and student advisor for the social work program. During this 13-year period, she developed and delivered curriculums and coursework for American Indian studies, chemical dependency, and introductory classes in social work. In addition to contributing to the student learning process in the classroom, Venida Chenault has been instrumental in grant management for the university, co-directing the Haskell/Kansas University Shifting Borders Ford Foundation Grant during the 2003-2004 academic year. 

Venida Chenault holds a Master of Social Work and a Doctor of Philosophy in Social Work from the University of Kansas. An active scholar, she has published over 14 journal articles, book reviews and technical reports and has presented at numerous conferences. Recently, Carolina Academic Press published her book, Weaving Strength, Weaving Power: Violence and Abuse against Indigenous Women, which builds on prior scholarship while offering a new framework for initiating social change. Venida Chenault belongs to the Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation and the Kickapoo Tribe and participates regularly in local tribal issues.

Work experience

Aug 2004Present

Vice-President for Academic Affairs

Haskell Indian Nations University


Aug 1998Dec 2004


University of Kansas/ School of Social Welfare