Darren Ranco


Penobscot Indian Nation

Darren J. Ranco, PhD, represents the Penobscot Nation. He is an Associate Professor of Anthropology and Chair of Native American Programs and Coordinator of Native American Research at the University of Maine. He has a Masters of Studies in Environmental Law from Vermont Law School and a PhD in Social Anthropology from Harvard University. His research focuses on the ways in which Indigenous communities in the United States resist environmental colonialism by using indigenous science and diplomacies, to protect natural and cultural resources. He teaches classes on indigenous intellectual property rights, research ethics, environmental justice and tribal governance. He has served on a number of Native, Museum, and Academic boards, including the Board of Wabanaki Public Health and Wellness (where currently serves) and at the Abbe Museum (where he was a trustee from 2005-2014 and is one of only two honorary trustees). As a citizen of the Penobscot Nation, he is particularly interested in how better research relationships can be made between universities, museums, Native and non-Native researchers, and indigenous communities. The son of Nelson Newell Ranco and May Ranco, he grew up in Orono and currently resides in Dedham.