Dr. Janelle Vanasse is the 13th president of Alaska Pacific University, joining the university on June 1, 2022.
Dr. Vanasse has been a leader in education for more than 30 years, specifically at schools and institutions that prioritize Alaska Native education. Immediately prior to joining APU, Vanasse served as superintendent of Mt. Edgecumbe High School in Sitka. She also held a range of leadership roles in the Bethel area, including director of secondary education for the Lower Kuskokwim School District, principal and site administrator for Bethel Regional High School, and founding director of Yuut Elitnaurviat, a regional training center for the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta. She started her education career in Alaska as a teacher and education specialist at schools in Bethel and Fairbanks.
Throughout her career, Dr. Vanasse has elevated the educational experience for Alaska Native students. She believes that scholarship and leadership are enhanced when influenced by our authentic selves and she delights in recognizing past students in emerging leadership roles around the state.
Dr. Vanasse holds a bachelor’s degree in special education from St. Cloud State University, a master’s degree in educational leadership from University of Alaska Anchorage, and a doctorate in educational leadership from Gonzaga University. Her most recent academic work includes research about the power of cultural self-identity in college persistence.