James Russell— 2006 Martha and Artemis Joukowsky Distinguished Service Award

Award Citation: 

It is with great pleasure that the Archaeological Institute of America presents the Martha and Artemis Joukowsky Distinguished Service Award for the year 2006 to Professor James Russell.  Professor Russell’s long record of service to the AIA exemplifies the spirit of the Joukowsky Distinguished Service Award to perfection.

For some forty years James Russell has worked tirelessly on behalf of the AIA internationally, nationally here in Canada, and locally in the AIA-Vancouver Society.  He has served on committees at all levels and risen in the ranks to fill some of the highest offices the AIA has to offer. Internationally he served as President, First Vice President, and Academic Trustee of the Institute, and locally in various offices of the AIA-Vancouver Society.  He was the first-ever AIA President from outside the United States, and a founding father and first President of AIA-Canada.  Although the noble experiment that was AIA-Canada ended in 2005, it accomplished the purpose of energizing the members and local societies in Canada and integrating them more fully into the larger Institute.

Jim Russell has been active in the AIA since he first became a member in the early 1960s.  As a very new and junior member of the Classics Department at the University of British Columbia in 1966, Jim was taken aside by the Head of his department and instructed to form a local AIA society in Vancouver.  Within six months it was up and running! Russell was promptly appointed to serve as Secretary, Treasurer and Program Coordinator, all in one, of the new society.  Since then he led the Vancouver Society for 16 of its first 25 years of existence, including two years as Society President. During this time the Vancouver Society grew from an original 30 members to over 100 and provided a full program of seven lectures a year, supplemented by occasional full-day symposia and field trips to local museums.  In addition, Professor Russell curated two visiting exhibitions at the UBC Museum of Anthropology in collaboration with the Vancouver Society. He also initiated a joint venture between the Vancouver Society and the UBC Department of Continuing Studies whereby colleagues presented courses on archaeological and related themes and a share of the profits was paid to the Vancouver Society.  The resulting funds enabled the Vancouver Society to enhance their programs for many years right up to the present.

Jim Russell has served as a speaker on the AIA’s traveling Lecture Program almost every year since 1970 and has visited about 75 percent of the active chapters, acting as a welcome ambassador between the Institute and the grass-roots membership.  He has held some of the most prestigious endowed lectureships including the Charles Eliot Norton Memorial Lectureship in 1995-1996.  His lively and engaging lecture style invariably leads to such reviews as “send him back as soon as possible!” and “The best AIA talk we ever had.”   Professor Russell has also extended his ambassadorial duties to the AIA Tour Program for which he has led successful tours to Turkey, Ireland, Scotland, and Sicily again to enthusiastic reviews by the travelers in his charge.

 Professor Russell attended his first Council Meeting at the AIA/APA Annual Meeting in Toronto in 1968 and since then he has regularly attended annual meetings and the Council.  Since the 1970s Jim has been a member of numerous Institute committees, many of which he chaired.  His duties have included service on the Program for the Annual Meeting Committee, Gold Medal for Distinguished Archaeological Achievement Committee and its predecessor the Committee on the Award; Foreign Honorary Members Committee, Nominating Committee, Governance Committee, and the Archaeology Magazine Committee, the Editorial Advisory Board for the Magazine and the Archives Committee.  Between 1988 and 1991 Jim was co-chair, with Clemency Coggins, of the Professional Responsibilities Committee, during which time the PRC formulated and the Council adopted the general Code of Ethics which articulates the AIA’s core principles with respect to the archaeological record and serves as a model for our members and for other professional organizations to follow.

James Russell has performed all his AIA service while maintaining an active teaching, research and excavation program of his own, in particular directing the Canadian Excavations at the Roman/Byzantine site of Anemurium on the south coast of Turkey for over 30 years. Although Jim is now Professor Emeritus of Greek and Roman Art and Archaeology at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, he has not retired from the AIA but continues to serve as an exemplary “good citizen” on committees, as a lecturer and as a tour leader.  The Archaeological Institute of America is indeed proud to present the 2006 Martha and Artemis Joukowsky Distinguished Service Award to Professor James Russell.

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