Letter to the Editor: A Good Professor, A Good Man

Attacks against N. Bruce Duthu '80 are unfair and misrepresenting.

by Nathan Empsall | 5/25/17 12:05am

Native American studies professor Bruce Duthu '80 is the best professor I have ever had, among those I have encountered at Dartmouth, Yale Divinity School or the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. He is a good person and a good scholar who has compiled an impressive administrative resume at Dartmouth and Vermont Law School. He would make an outstanding dean of the faculty.

I was heartened by the faculty’s vote asking Duthu to reconsider declining his appointment, and I will support him in any choice that he makes. However, the fact that he faces such a decision at all is a position that he never should have been put in to begin with. His critics, including the perennial digital gadfly Joe Asch ’79, misrepresented his resume and unfairly attacked a good man. They have weakened Dartmouth, and their petty actions disgust and disappoint me. One can’t help but wonder if a white man (like me) would have been treated the same way.

Thank you, Bruce. I am grateful for your career and for the deep and positive influence you had on me as your student. I will always love and support you. I know that countless others in the Dartmouth community will do the same.

– Nathan Empsall ’09

Empsall is a member of the Class of 2009. He was a government and Native American studies double major at the College and is currently enrolled in the joint degree program at the Yale Divinity School and the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. He is also a freelance political consultant who has worked for the Democratic National Committee and the Sierra Club.

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