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Board of Trustees

Darrell Mike, (Twenty-Nine Palms Band of Mission Indians), Chair

Chairman Darrell Mike was born in Palm Springs, California and has been a long-time resident of the Coachella Valley.  He grew up attending desert valley schools during his youth and later attended Palm Desert High School.  At the age of eighteen, he became an adult voting member of the Tribal Council in 1990. After many years of service on the Tribal Council and recognition for his efforts in building a brighter future for the Tribe, Chairman Mike was elected to his first tenure as Tribal Chairman on January 1, 2007, serving consecutive terms.

As Tribal Chairman, Darrell Mike has assumed the duties of presiding over official tribal meetings, serving as the tribal spokesman, preserving tribal heritage, overseeing the day-to-day government operations and maintaining government-to-government relationships.  He has developed various relationships with outside government officials from the Coachella Valley to Washington, D.C.  He also participates in outreach efforts with the local community and organizes charitable events through affiliated entities such as the Four Winds Coalition, Native American Land Conservancy and Theresa A. Mike Scholarship Foundation.

Recent successes of Chairman Mike have been revamping the tribal government structure, implementing new ordinances (tribal laws), updating government policies, incorporating efficiency measures within the government, expanding the tribal enterprise, including the Spotlight 29 Casino and Tortoise Rock Casino.  Chairman Mike envisions the Tribe focusing on higher education, maintaining a healthy business plan, diversification and tribal self-sufficiency.

Starley Dullien, Ph.D., Vice Chair

Under the direction of Dr. Dullien, National University Language Institute (NULI), Spectrum Center, San Diego, provides language acquisition and communication, pathway and bridge, discipline-specific, developmental (remedial), and entry-level career upskilling programs for international and domestic students—onsite and online.

Dr. Dullien earned her Ph.D. in Education from Northcentral University, Scottsdale, Arizona, a master’s degree in Educational Technology, and a master’s degree in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages, as well as a Professional Clear Designated Subjects Adult Education Teaching Credential for German, Italian, General Educational Development (GED) subject areas, Elementary and Secondary Basic Skills, and Instructional Technology from California State University, San Bernardino (CSUSB).  She has facilitated graduate courses at CSUSB and CSU Palm Desert, School of Education, specializing in teacher training and development, as well as undergraduate courses for Southwestern College and Palomar College (San Diego), DQ University-Soboba Band of Luiseño Indians, and College of the Desert (Palm Desert).  

She is a founding member of the Inland Empire Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) Chapter, served on the California TESOL (CATESOL) Conference Committee, and California Teachers of English Learners (CTEL) Governance Board.  Honors were awarded by CSUSB, the Kappa Delta Pi Honor Society, the Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society, and the Golden Key National Honor Society as recognition for academic achievements.

As a Professional Development Practitioner (PDP), Dr. Dullien presented workshops for the California Adult Literacy Professional Development Project (CALPRO) on a variety of topics relevant to adult education. She has native proficiency in German and Italian, is a novice learner of Arabic & Chinese, and has advanced proficiency in French and Spanish.  

On a personal note, as Chairperson of the Youth College Network (YCN), a division of USA Dance, she contributed to the development of high school dance clubs and fostered collegiate competitions across the United States. 

Robert Paull, (Lummi), Treasurer

Robert Paull is an enrolled tribal member of the Lummi Nation from the Pacific Northwest of Washington State and is a Persian Gulf War combat veteran. He received his BS in Business from California State University, Channel Islands and has worked and volunteered for tribal non-profit organizations for over five years. Robert is a founding member of CINC and has a keen understanding of the challenges many Native American students face as they seek acceptance among their peers reaching for their educational dreams. Through his own challenges, Robert appreciates the mission of CINC and is dedicated to seeing it succeed and thrive for generations to come in the Native Community. As president of the CINC Foundation, Robert provides resource support to California Indian Nation College  ranging from monetary donations to community partnerships that advance both the College and its students.

Dineen Mike, (Twenty-Nine Palms Band of Mission Indians), Secretary

Dineen Mike is a Trustee Member and Secretary for the California Indian Nations College Board of Trustees.  Mike is a member of the Twenty-Nine Palms Band of Mission Indians.   Mike’s outlook on her life when she was young did not include higher education.  Through conversations with numerous people and seeing her loved ones completing their higher education, Mike realized the importance of higher education for others and for herself.  Getting through high school was difficult for her, but she later realized that it was difficult, because she made it difficult on herself.  Developing better study habits and a better work ethic has helped her focus on realigning the focus for life.  These adjustments has led her to participate in a more positive active role in education. Placing college possibilities in front of her was very intimidating at first, but jumping in with both of her feet was the best decision she has ever made.  Having this new outlook on life and the educational tools that she has learned has made her college journey fulfilling, and it has shown her that she is a self taught, self disciplined woman who is ready to accomplish her goals in life.

Gerald Clarke, (Cahuilla Band of Indians) MFA., Trustee

Trustee Gerald Clarke Jr. was born in Hemet, California in 1967 to Carol and Gerald Clarke, Sr., his father being born Cahuilla. At the age of 3 his parents divorced and he moved with his siblings and mother to Orange County, and on the weekends he would return to the reservation to spend time with his father. At age 16, he moved to Arkansas with his mother and sister. He attended Ozarka College, where he majored in welding, electrical maintenance, and hydraulics; three necessary components to the artworks Clarke would create as a full time artist. 

After graduation from vocational school, Clarke worked as a welder, and eventually met Stacy Brown, whom he would eventually marry. Ready for change, Clarke was accepted to University of Central Arkansas where in 1991 he obtained a Bachelors of Arts in painting and sculpture. Clarke then went on to obtain his Masters of Arts in 1992 from Stephen F. Austin State University. After graduation he became an adjunct professor of art at Lon Morris College all the while working on his Masters thesis. With his thesis, which looked at the use of traditional American Indian themes and images in contemporary art, accepted Clarke received his Masters of Fine Arts from Stephen F. Austin in 1994.

With his Masters in hand, Clarke headed the art department at Northeast Texas Community College in 1996, eventually moving on to East Central University to serve as assistant professor of art in 1998. Gerald taught in the Visual Arts Department at Idyllwild Arts Academy from 2004-2012 and served as department chair from 2013-2015. In the fall of 2016, Gerald accepted the position as Assistant Professor in the Ethnic Studies Department at the University of California, Riverside.

With the death of Gerald Clarke, Sr. in 2003, Clarke and his family returned to the Cahuilla Band of Indians reservation. When not creating his own work, Clarke runs a storage business with wife Stacy, assists in running the Clarke family cattle ranch, and remains heavily involved in Cahuilla culture. He is also is a frequent lecturer, speaking regionally/nationally about Native art, culture and issues. In 2008 and 2018, he was elected to the Cahuilla tribal government. When not working, Clarke participates in Bird Singing, a traditional form of singing that tells the cosmology of the Cahuilla people. 

Patricia A. Dixon, (Pauma Band of Luiseño Indians) MA., Trustee

Trustee Patricia A. Dixon is a member of the Pauma Band of Luiseño Indians.  She resides on the Pauma Indian reservation and was the primary caretaker of her mother Mrs. Lorena Dixon- a feisty woman with a frail body until February 2012.  The death of her youngest brother 18 years ago provided her with what she stated was the “duty and privilege to share, in an intimate manner, with his widow the upbringing of his young sons” who were 11, 7 and 4 at the time of his death. Patti’s commitment to her family, tribe and culture has served her well but more importantly, she has been a role model to all of us who not only work in the field of academia or tribal communities but to all American Indians who meet her.

She is the first known American Indian to graduate from the University of San Diego earning a B.A. in American History with minors in religious studies and sociology, and an M.A. in American history.  She has also done graduate work at St. Thomas Seminary, Denver, Colorado, graduate work in history at University of California, Riverside, graduate work in religious studies at the University of San Francisco, participated in the Pre-law school program for American Indians at the University of New Mexico, and took courses in the UCLA Tribal Learning Community & Educational Exchange (TLCEE) an innovative legal and general education program housed at the UCLA School of Law

Trustee Dixon’s extensive community/tribal involvement leaves little time for publications but she has supported or co-authored several papers:  a book review on The Indian School on Magnolia Avenue for the UCLA American Indian Culture and Research Journal, 2013,Chapter 10, “The place of American Indian Boarding Schools in Contemporary Society,” in Cliff Trafzer, et al. Boarding School Blues: Revisiting American Indian Educational Experiences. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 2006.  Susan H. Mitchell, The Legacy of the Luiseno: An Indigenous Tribe of San Diego County, San Diego: San Diego County School District, 1996. Henry Rodriguez and Patricia Dixon, editors.  Co-wrote with Patricia Nelson a work for the San Diego City Schools, American Indian Significance in United States History, 1970.   A book review for the Southern California Quarterly on El Capitan in 2015, and worked with the Rincon Storytelling Youth Project for the bilingual publication (Luiseno/English) Why the Stinkbug is Black.

Research in Progress: a book project, “Luiseno Knowledge: Historical, Cultural and Political Ways of the Luiseno People,” with Professor Edward D. Castillo, CSU Sonoma, and Professor Joely Proudfit, CSU San Marcos.

For more than fourteen years she served on the tribal council for Pauma, with four of those years as tribal chair. Served as Acting Tribal Administrator for Pauma Band of Mission Indians; for ten years she sat on the Sherman Indian High School Board, with six of those years as School Board President. Patricia acted as the main faculty advisor to the Indian students at Palomar College; organized and presented an in-service workshop to elementary school teachers of the San Jacinto school district on “Indian History, Values, and Philosophy”; was a member of the United Indian Women’s Club, which was a part of the National Federation of Women’s Clubs; assisted in the establishment of a counseling program for American Indian Marines confined at the Camp Pendleton Correctional Facility; Served on the Luiseno/Cupeno intertribal NAGPRA coalition; appointed by the Assembly Speaker for the State of California to the State’s Curriculum Commission for four years; was a reader for Indian Health Services scholarships in Rockville, Maryland 2009; served on the advisory board for the American Indian Diabetic Teleophthalmology Grant Program for two years 2002-2003; guest lecturer on three different occasions for the Department of Defense American Indian Cultural Course at Camp Pendleton and Oakland (2002-2008); was one of the original members of the Institutional Review Board for the Indian Health Consortium; functioned as a member of the California Indian Legal Services Board both as its vice-chair and chair.

Trustee Dixon has been a professor of American Indian Studies for 40 plus years at Palomar College. Patricia also taught at Alliant University and for about twenty years at San Diego State University, all the while, actively serving on numerous academic and community boards.  She has been integral to the development and sustainability of one of the oldest American Indian Studies programs, at a two-year college, in the country.  Patricia has been a professor of American Indian Studies for 40 plus years at Palomar College. 

She does not limit her efforts to her own campus; she has offered her guidance and support to a variety of American Indian Studies programs throughout the region. She was instrumental in the development and/or hire of American Indian faculty at both USD and CSUSM.  In sum, her work has contributed to taking Palomar College courses to rural reservations, establishing tribal libraries, educating a range of generations and sharing with her colleagues the running of a Palomar-JOM summer program for eight to ten years at the Pala Mission School which Professor Dixon described as “integrating a curriculum of native cultures and western academics.” 

Professor Dixon now chairs her department, American Indian Studies and American Studies, while also serving as chair for the Pauma Band of Luiseno Indians Education, Repatriation, Library, and Policies Committee; sits on the Board for the Rincon Indian Health Center; Past Chair, Native American Advisory Council (NAC) at CSUSM but still maintains a seat on NAC at CSUSM.  

In the Fall of 2012 Professor Dixon was acknowledged and honored by the University of San Diego’s School of Leadership and Education Sciences as one of five recipients for “Remarkable Leaders in Education”; and also by KPBS and the Union Bank of California, along with Leroy Elliott of Manzanita, as local heroes for Native American Heritage month for their contributions to San Diego and their efforts to strengthen their communities and making San Diego a better place to live.

The above is only a partial list of the numerous committees and boards in which Patricia participated or currently works on. Her willingness to take on leadership roles impacts the lives of individuals and communities in San Diego and beyond. I can only tell you how respected she is in so many different circles because of her commitment to serve and commitment to lead. Although her service on formal boards is commendable and inspiring, it is her work in tribal communities that I am most inspired and impressed by.  Her family are singers of the traditional songs, practitioners of the sweat lodge, and deeply respectful of the culture and practices of the Pauma Luiseno people.  She makes herself available to serve in her cultural responsibilities regardless of time constraints and her busy work schedule.

Ultimately, Trustee Dixon credits her late mother, Lorena Majel Dixon for her philosophy, “to take joy in what you do, to serve humbly, but to fight courageously for those whose voices are not heard.”

Thomas Dullien, Ph.D., Trustee

Dr. Thomas Dullien is the Vice President for Human Relations and Talent Development. Convinced that developing and working with Relations of Humans in the workplace will be more effective than the traditional focus on ‘Humans as Resources’ he collaborates with the senior leadership team at Pechanga Resort & Casino and their operational leadership teams. The work of his tenure continues to demonstrate strong consultative, relationship building, interpersonal and effective leadership skills in dealing with all staff and management levels to establish trustworthiness, credibility and positive working relations in a timely and successful manner.

Performing jointly with cross-functional teams to plan, deploy, embed and sustain organizational initiatives based on strategic and tactical considerations, his leadership functions include, but are not limited, to identify and apply beneficial interventions relative to organization development, strengths based leadership development, performance management, compensation and benefit improvements, employee engagement through balanced work-life satisfaction experiences, and talent development.

Prior to this appointment he was Executive Director for the Barona Institute and Executive Director for the HR functions at Barona Resort & Casino from 2006 to 2019. Thomas assessed the organization development opportunities and the design of human performance solutions that achieved uncommon business outcomes. Barona Resort & Casino was voted ‘Best Casino’ in San Diego County for nine (9) consecutive years and voted ‘Best Place to Work’ for the last five (5) consecutive years.

Dr. Dullien started his career in Indian Gaming in 1996 after successful career in the food7beverage and country club industries. He served as Director for Human Resources, Training & Development at Spotlight 29 Casino and as General Manager at Soboba Casino. During these years he also designed, developed, and implemented the first Associates Degree program for Gaming in Indian Nations at DQ University and the College of the Desert and the first and only online bachelor degree for Indian Gaming at National University.

With a seasoned background in various hospitality industries, Dr. Dullien’s parallel teaching career now spans 40 years with appointments at eight Universities. Over the years he has taught graduate and post-graduate courses in the fields of Hospitality, Management & Leadership, Organization Development, Human Resource Management, and Economics. He holds an MBA degree from Justus Liebig University in Germany and an M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Utah. In the last twenty-five years he was privileged to consult and work with over 30 Indian Nations from the Cree Nations in Canada to the Navajo and Yaqui Tribes in the South and from the Confederate Tribes of Grande Ronde to the Choctaw and Cherokee Nations just to name a few.

During his professional career Dr. Dullien also achieved professional designations as a Certified Professional Catering Executive (CPCE), Certified Association Executive (CAE), Certified Country Club Manager (CCM) and Certified Hospitality Executive (CHE).

Sandra Kewanhaptewa-Dixon, (Hopi) Ph.D., Trustee

Dr. Sandy Kewanhaptewa-Dixon is Hopi and she received her doctorate in Educational Leadership and Change from Fielding Graduate University in 2006. She is currently chair of the Department of Ethnic & Women’s Studies at California Polytechnic University, Pomona in the College of Education and Integrative Studies. Before teaching in higher education, Sandy taught special education in Los Angeles Unified School District. She also worked at the Bureau of Indian Affairs for sixteen years and Sherman Indian High School in Riverside County. At Sherman, she served as the Special Education Coordinator and Curriculum & Instruction Coordinator and was a former Principal at Noli Indian High School in San Jacinto, California. She has served on many educational school boards and commissions. She is the mother of two children.

2019-20 Board Meetings

Next Teleconference Session Meeting: Special Meeting called to order by Chair D. Mike, April 10, 2020.

Next Open Session Meeting: April 30, 2020

March 19, 2020 Agenda (pending approval during next meeting)

January 23, 2020 Official Minutes (pending approval during next meeting)

January 23, 2020 Agenda

October 24, 2019 Official Minutes

October 24, 2019 Agenda

July 25, 2019 Official Minutes

July 25, 2019 Agenda

2020-21 Board Meetings

July 23, 2020 Official Minutes

July 23, 2020 Agenda

TBD