Former dean to earn $94K despite sexual assault allegations

By Lindsey Salvatelli

DeKALB | Eric Dannenmaier, former College of Law dean, has been granted a nearly $100,000 employment contract with NIU despite recent investigations that concluded it is “more than likely” he sexually harassed two former employees.

The position with the Division of Research and Innovation Partnerships, which Spokesperson Joe King said is set to expire on or before Dec. 31, comes following Dannenmaier’s June 30 resignation amid the sexual harassment allegations.

Terms of the agreement grant Dannenmaier a tenured, non-instructional, temporary faculty position with the division. However, the contract also limits his involvement at the university as well as with the College of Law and ensures he will not attempt to secure long-term employment with NIU, according to the resolution agreement.

Dannenmaier accepted the offer and conditions of the resolution agreement offered to him by university officials July 7. The agreement gives him a salary of $94,500 — a fixed portion of his original $270,000 salary as the College of Law dean — and allows him to continue to work off campus in a non-supervisory or managerial role.

As a faculty member, Dannenmaier will perform research and policy developments related to “water in a changing world, restore ecosystems, aging in community and governmental efficiency,” according to the agreement.

This work is to be performed remotely but will require Dannenmaier to attend certain meetings on campus, according to the agreement. State laws and university policy allow Dannenmaier to recoup travel and accommodation expenses that are ”reasonably related to his work” if he moves away from DeKalb.

The non-disparagement provision, a clause in the contract that restricts persons from taking action that will negatively affect an organization, prohibits Dannenmaier, the College of Law, the Office of the Provost, faculty and staff and officials from “[engaging] in conduct or [making] a statement in any form or media that is calculated or intended to have the effect of undermining, disparaging or otherwise reflecting poorly upon the other,” according to the agreement.

“NIU arranged for a timely resolution demonstrating that NIU holds employees at every level accountable for their behavior,” spokesperson Lisa Miner said in an email. “Our agreement with Mr. Dannenmaier protects the university from the possibility of a protracted and expensive internal hearing process to which all tenured faculty are entities, with an uncertain outcome.”