DPI Staff

Dr. Franklin Sage

Director of Diné Policy Institute

Dr. Franklin Sage (Diné) is the Director of Diné Policy Institute, Tsaile, AZ. He is a graduate of University of North Dakota, Grand Forks, ND with B. A. and M. A. in Sociology and a Ph.D. in Educational Foundations and Research. The title of his Master’s thesis study is “Comparing the Environmental Attitudes and Behaviors of Native Americans and Non-Native Americans,” and his Doctoral dissertation study is “Indigenous Knowledge System and Decolonizing Methodology Interwoven into Higher Education Experiences: Autoethnography.” He is a co-author for publication in International Review of Qualitative Research and title of the article is “Decolonizing Our Own Stories: A Project of the Student Storytellers Indigenizing the Academy (SSITA) Group.” His most recent co-author publication is in Human Biology: Wayne State University Press and title, “Weaving the Strands of Life (Iiná Bitł’ool): History of Genetic Research Involving Navajo People.” Dr. Sage is a combat veteran of Operation Iraq Freedom and served 12 years with the U. S. Army. He is initially from Counselor, NM.

Michael Parrish

Policy Analyst

Michael Parrish is the Policy Analyst for Diné Policy Institute. He studied Political Science at Arizona State University and graduated with a B.A. in 2015. At DPI he has worked on food sovereignty, Government Reform, the Informal Economy, Navajo Land Tenure System and grants. Currently he is researching the COVID 19 issues on the Navajo Nation. He is a member of Kayenta Chapter.

Travis Teller

Research Assistant

Travis Teller is the Research Assistant of the Diné Policy Institute (DPI). He is a graduate of Diné College, Tsaile, AZ with A.A. in Diné Studies, and received a B.A. in Psychology graduating with the second cohort class of the Psychology program. Under his Psychology program, he conducted a study on how horses heal humans by analyzing Indigenous methodologies that consisted of decolonization and focusing on tribal epistemology and tribal knowledge. The study also involved using Western methodologies that included a mixed-methods approach, which both became a success and was beneficial for Navajo Nation. At DPI he was a co-author to a landscape analysis that was completed with the W.K. Kellogg Foundation of San Juan County. He is currently working with colleagues on research on how COVID-19 has impacted the Navajo Nation. Mr. Teller is also a Diné traditional counselor, a practitioner, medicine man, and a Diné language and culture instructor. He is a local member of Diné College and comes from Black Rock, AZ.




Mail to
Diné Policy Institute (DPI)
Diné College
1 Circle Drive
Tsaile, AZ 86556