- Anthropology and Geography
- Ph.D. in Anthropology, Southern Methodist University, Dallas, Texas, 2005 M.A. in Anthropology, Southern Methodist University, Dallas, Texas, 2000 B.A. in Anthropology, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado, 1995
Professor of Anthropology
Director, Center for Mountain and Plains Archaeology
Curator, Archaeological Repository of Colorado State University (AR-CSU)
I am an archaeologist who specializes in the study of foragers, also known as hunter-gatherers. I am interested in different aspects of their organization, including subsistence, mobility, seasonal aggregation, camp layout, and food sharing. My research focuses on the pre- and post-contact Native American cultures of the Intermountain West, primarily within the state of Colorado.
I select field and lab projects that span the various environments of this region, moving from the short grass plains of eastern Colorado to the plains/foothills/mountain interface along the Front Range (South Platte river basin), up into the high alpine ecosystems in our mountain ranges, and finally down to Colorado’s western slope, in the canyon country of the Yampa, White, and Colorado river basins. I enjoy research related to the early peopling of the continent (Clovis to late Paleo), high altitude and mountain archaeology, communal hunting such as game drives, site structure, stone circles (tipi rings), lithic technology, thermal features, the history of archaeology, and public archaeology.
My research lab is titled the Center for Mountain and Plains Archaeology (CMPA), housed in the Clark A building. We are a research-learning lab, grant sponsored from federal agencies such as the National Park Service, the United States Forest Service, the Bureau of Land Management, and the Bureau of Reclamation. The CMPA is proudly supported by the James and Audrey Benedict Fund for Mountain Archaeology, which provides annual funding for student and faculty support, technical lab analyses, travel costs, and lab supplies.
I am always looking for new graduate students (MA and PhD) to join my research lab. I seek students who want to work in a “team” environment, where they can be part of the many field and lab projects sponsored by the CMPA. My goal is to train my graduate students as “project archaeologists”, so that by the time they graduate they will have gained experience in survey and excavation, various lab analyses (lithics, faunal, ceramics, GIS), and report writing. Thesis projects are designed to make an intellectual contribution to Colorado archaeology, while also providing students with the KSAs (knowledge, skills, and abilities) to succeed in their future careers.
I teach classes in a variety of topics, including Introduction to Archaeology, Lithic Technology, Archaeology and the Public (ethics, CRM, outreach), surveys of Colorado and Great Plains archaeology, hunter-gatherer archaeology, and archaeological methods. I also teach the archaeological field school, currently in a two-year rotation (two year on/off) with Dr. Edward Henry, also with our department.
I serve as the curator of the Archaeological Repository at Colorado State University (AR-CSU), which contains extensive collections from Colorado, particularly from the South Platte and Colorado River Basins. Many of these relate to past cultural resource management projects and field schools, led by former CSU archaeologists Cal Jennings, Liz Morris, and Larry Todd. We also house one of the largest alpine archaeological collections in North America, including major survey and excavation projects by Jim Benedict and others. The CMPA also houses a large archaeological library and a comparative lithic collection spanning the region.
I also serve as the NAGPRA co-coordinator for the Department, and since 2005, have worked on inventory, reporting, consultation, and reburial efforts. We are fortunate to have worked with a variety of tribal partners on our past work, and I welcome and look forward to future projects with our partners.
Finally, I value my connections with the greater archaeological community and the general public. For instance, I am the past president of both the Colorado Archaeological Society and the Colorado Council of Professional Archaeologists, and am also a past board member of the Plains Anthropological Society. I hosted the 2013 Plains Anthropological Conference in Loveland, Colorado, and helped organize other regional conferences too. I currently serve as the Book Review editor for Southwestern Lore, the journal of the Colorado Archaeological Society. I try to share the work of the CMPA widely, both professionally and publicly, and give tours and talks throughout the year.
Drop me a line (email above) if you are interested in Colorado archaeology and want to learn more about my own work and that of the CMPA!
Environmental and Landscape Archaeology; Peopling of the Americas; Contact Era; Foragers; Great Plains and Rocky Mountains; Lithic Technology; Public Archaeology
ANTH140, Introduction to World Prehistory
ANTH350, Archaeology of North America
ANTH455, Great Plains Archaeology
ANTH456, Archaeology and the Public
ANTH457, Lithic Technology