Meet Our Lecturers

J. M. Adovasio received his undergraduate degree in Anthropology from the University of Arizona in 1965 and Ph.D. in Anthropology from the University of Utah in 1970. Since that time, he has served as a Post Doctoral Fellow at the Smithsonian Institution (1972 - 1973) and as Professor and Chairman of the Department of Anthropology at the University of Pittsburgh (1973 - 1990).  In 1990, Dr. Adovasio moved to Erie, Pennsylvania to assume the positions of Chairman of the Department of Anthropology/Archaeology and Director of Mercyhurst Archaeological Institute, where he served until 2015 and was also appointed Provost, Senior Counselor to the President, and Dean of the Zurn School of Natural Sciences and Mathematics.  He is currently Director of Archaeology at the Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute, Florida Atlantic University

Though probably best known for his state-of-the-art excavations at Meadowcroft Rockshelter, southwestern Pennsylvania, and his attendant contributions to the highly controversial Pre-Clovis/Clovis debate, Adovasio is generally considered to be the world’s leading authority in the arena of perishable artifact analysis. Since 1970, he has published more than 400 books, or book chapters, manuscripts, and technical papers. These notably include The First Americans (with Jake Page) and the Invisible Sex (with Olga Soffer and Jake Page). Most recently he has served as the co-principal investigator of a multi-year NOAA sponsored project to locate and excavate submerged Paleoindian sites on the inundated continental shelf of the Gulf of Mexico.

Professor Mark Aldenderfer is the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation Endowed Chair in Anthropology at the University of California at Merced, and Adjunct Professor with the School of Anthropology at the University of Arizona, Tucson.  He holds his degrees from Pennsylvania State University (Ph.D.) and Wake Forest University, and his areas of specialization include the Tibetan plateau and the Himalayan arc, the archaeology of foraging societies, Archaic/Pre-ceramic Andes, comparative analysis of high altitude cultural and biological adaptations, the archaeology of Buddhism, and the archaeology of religion.  He has conducted fieldwork in Tibet, Nepal, Peru, Argentina, Ethiopia, and at sites throughout the United States. Professor Aldenderfer was the AIA's Norton Lecturer for 2013/2014.

Bettina Arnold obtained her BA in Archaeology from Yale University and her MA and PhD degrees in Anthropology from Harvard University. She is Professor of Anthropology at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, where she served as the Co-Director of the Center for Celtic Studies from 2000-2009 and Coordinator of the Museum Studies Graduate Program from 1996-2012. She is the Editor of the on-line peer-reviewed journal e-Keltoi. Her area of expertise is the pre-Roman European Iron Age, but in the course of her career she has participated in archaeological projects ranging from the Middle Bronze Age through the early medieval period in western Europe. Since 1999 she has co-directed a research project in southwest-Germany focused on the burial record of the early Iron Age Heuneburg hillfort and its environs; two burial mounds associated with this site were excavated by the Landscape of Ancestors project between 1999 and 2002. Finds from those excavations were featured in Die Welt der Kelten: Zentren der Macht - Kostbarkeiten der Kunst, a major exhibition in Stuttgart in 2012-2013. Her research has focused on the archaeological interpretation and analysis of complex societies, particularly as reflected in mortuary contexts; material culture as a symbolic system and a means of communicating social relationships; the archaeological interpretation of prehistoric gender configurations in burial contexts; and the socio-political history of archaeology and museum collecting, especially their involvement in identity construction in 19th and 20th century nationalist and ethnic movements in Europe and the United States. Recent publications include: Bettina Arnold (2012) The lake dwelling diaspora and natural history museums: identity, collecting and ethics, in Francesco Menotti and Aidan O'Sullivan (eds) The Oxford Handbook of Wetland Archaeology and Beyond, pp. 865-881. Oxford: Oxford University Press; Bettina Arnold (2012) The Vix Princess redux: a retrospective on European Iron Age gender and mortuary studies, in Lourdes Prados Torreira (ed.) La Arqueología funeraria desde una perspectiva de género, pp. 215-232. Madrid: UA Ediciones; Derek B. Counts and Bettina Arnold (eds) (2010) The Master of Animals in Old World Iconography (Budapest: Archaeolingua).

Anne Austin is Assistant Professor of Anthropology at the University of Missouri, St. Louis, and a past Mellon Fellow in the Scholars in the Humanities program at Stanford University. She received her B.A. in Anthropology from Harvard University, and her M.A. and Ph.D. in the Archaeology program at UCLA. Her research combines the fields of osteology and Egyptology in order to document medicine and disease in the past. Specifically, she uses data from the human remains and daily life texts of the ancient Egyptian village of Deir el-Medina to reconstruct ancient Egyptian health care networks and identify the diseases and illnesses people experienced in the past.

Erin Walcek Averett is Associate Professor of Archaeology at Creighton University, and also serves as the Adjunct Curator of Antiquities at the Joslyn Art Museum in Omaha; she holds her Ph.D. from the University of Missouri.  Her areas of specialization are the archaeology of Cyprus, Greek art and archaeology, ancient religion, figurine studies, Easten Mediterranean interactions, and the construction of gender in the ancient Mediterranean.  Since 2003 Professor Averett has been the Assistant Director of the Athienou Archaeological Project on Cyprus.

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