Affiliate Faculty


  • Website:
  • Role:

  • Position:

    • Affiliate Faculty
  • Concentration:

    • Cultural Anthropology
  • Department:

    • Anthropology and Geography
  • Education:

    • M.A. in Creative Nonfiction, Colorado State University, 2016
    • M.A. in Cultural Anthropology, Colorado State University, 2006


Susan Devan Harness, M.A., is a member of the Salish-Kootenai Confederated Tribes, a cultural anthropologist, as well as an American Indian transracial adoptee.  Her book, Bitterroot: A Salish Memoir of Transracial Adoption (University of Nebraska Press, 2018) received two High Plains Book Awards in the categories of Indigenous Writer and Creative Nonfiction; Bitterroot was also a finalist in the Colorado Book Awards.  Her book Mixing Cultural Identities Through Transracial Adoption (Edwin Mellen Press, 2009) was based on her cultural anthropology research.

Ms. Harness’s expertise in transracial adoption in general and American Indian transracial child placement specifically extend beyond the academic.  Her TEDxMileHigh Talk “Adopting a Child of a Different Race?  Let’s Talk…” can be viewed at

Because of her activism and unique understanding of child adoption, she has received numerous invitations to keynote and present both nationally and internationally.