Jim Aimers


Jim Aimers is an associate professor of anthropology at the State University of New York at Geneseo. He got his B.A. and M.A, at Trent University (Ontario, Canada) and completed his PhD in anthropology at Tulane University in New Orleans (2002). Aimers’ dissertation was on the Maya collapse in the Belize River Valley. He edited Ancient Maya Pottery: Classification, Analysis and Interpretation (University Press of Florida 2012) and has authored numerous articles and book chapters. . His other interests include architecture and gender/sexuality.



Jaime AweJaime Awe is an assistant professor in the Department of Anthropology at Northern Arizona University, as well as Emeritus member of the Belize Institute of Archaeology, where he served as Director from 2003 to 2014. Between 1990 and 2000, he taught in the Anthropology Departments of Trent University in Ontario, Canada, then at the Universities of New Hampshire and Montana. He received his Ph.D. from the University of London, England. During his extensive career in archaeology, Awe has conducted important research and conservation work at most of the major sites in Belize (including Altun Ha, Baking Pot, Cahal Pech, Caracol, Cerros, Lamanai, Lubaantun, and Xunantunich, and Actun Tunichil Muknal, Chechem Ha, and Barton Creek Caves). He has also published numerous articles in various books, journals, and magazines, and his research has been featured in several national and international television documentaries.


Timothy Beach 

Tim Beach, Centennial Chair in Geography, UT Austin, directs its Soils and Geoarchaeology Laboratory. He has more than 100 publications on soils, geomorphology, and geoarchaeology of Central America and world-wide.








Jack Biggs

Jack Biggs is a Ph.D. Candidate in the Anthropology at Michigan State University and is affiliated with the Central Belize Archaeological Survey (CBAS). His dissertation research, under the direction of Gabriel Wrobel, focuses on ancient Maya childhood and the growth and development of the human skeleton and how cultural, environmental, biological stressors influence these processes.






Kat Brown


M. Kathryn Brown is an Associate Professor at the University of Texas at San Antonio. She holds the Lutcher Brown Endowed Professor of Anthropology. Her research focuses on the rise of complexity and the role of ritual, religion, and ceremonial architecture in the Preclassic period. She is the director of the Mopan Valley Preclassic Project and the Co-Director of the Mopan Valley Archaeological Project. She has focused her recent research at the sites of Xunantunich, Buenavista del Cayo, and Las Ruinas de Arenal. She is the co-editor of Ancient Mesoamerican Warfare and has several recent publications that have appeared in Mexicon, Advances in Archaeological Practices, and Research Reports in Belizean Archaeology.


Dorie Budet



Dorie Budet is the curator of the ancient Americas collection at the Museum of Fine Arts Boston, and research associate at the Smithsonian Institution working with Ron Bishop on the Maya Ceramics Project.







Melissa Burham Photo


Melissa Burham is a Ph.D. Candidate in the School of Anthropology at the University of Arizona. She has been a member of the Ceibal-Petexbatun Archaeological Project, directed by Takeshi Inomata and Daniela Triadan, since 2010. Her dissertation research focuses on neighborhood organization in outlying areas of the lowland Maya site of Ceibal, Guatemala, and how these groups influenced the larger sociopolitical order.



Ryan Collins


Ryan Collins is a Ph.D. Candidate in the Anthropology Department of Brandeis University. He has been a member of the Proyecto de Interacción Política del Centro de Yucatán (PIPCY), directed by Travis Stanton and Traci Adren, since 2011. Collins’ dissertation research has focused on the Central Plaza, or E-group, Complex of Yaxuná, Yucatan Mexico with the goal of understanding the relationship between interregional interaction and urban development in the Northern Lowlands and its potential contributions to Mesoamerican culture during the Middle (1000 to 400 BCE) and Late (400 BCE to 250 CE) Formative periods. Collins is also an avid public anthropologist and the co-founder of the podcast This Anthro Life.



Liz GrahamElizabeth Graham (PhD, University of Cambridge, 1983) is Professor of Mesoamerican Archaeology at the Institute of Archaeology, University College London (UCL). Prior to her move to London in 1999, she was in the Department of Anthropology at York University in Toronto and a Research Associate at the Royal Ontario Museum. She has carried out archaeological investigations in Belize for over 40 years, and served as Archaeological Commissioner in Belize from 1977 to 1979. She directed excavations at a number of inland and coastal sites in the Stann Creek District, at Tipu on the Macal River, and more recently at Lamanai on the New River Lagoon and Marco Gonzalez on Ambergris Caye. Her present research interests include the Maya at Spanish contact (Maya Christians and Their Churches in Sixteenth-Century Belize, UPF, 2011); commercial networks and water-borne trade; neotropical urbanism as a model for the long-term environmental impact of human activities; the fallacy of the concept of 'human sacrifice'; and warfare and the Maya collapse. She and her team are also working on developing best practices for long-term artefact storage and conservation at Lamanai, as well as ways of facilitating accessibility (see

Stan Guenter


Stanley Guenter studied archaeology at the University of Calgary, La Trobe University in Melbourne, Australia, and Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, before receiving his Ph.D. in Anthropology from the latter in 2014. He has worked with three projects in Guatemala, at the sites of El Peru-Waka, La Corona, and a number in the Mirador Basin, as well as at Cahal Pech in Belize with AFAR, at Lake Minnewanka, in the Rocky Mountains of Alberta, Canada, and at Phnom Kulen in Cambodia. Stan's work involves combining archaeological, epigraphic, and ethnohistoric data to better understand ancient civilizations and their history, and to compare this with paleoenvironmental data to better understand how ancient societies affected and were affected by their changing climates. 



Christophe Helmke

Christophe Helmke is Associate professor of American Indian Languages and Cultures at the University of Copenhagen, Denmark. He teaches undergraduate and graduate courses on the archeology, epigraphy, iconography and languages of Mesoamerica. Since 2000 he has tutored hieroglyphic workshops as part of a series of conferences in Europe as well as North and Central America. Besides Maya archaeology and epigraphy, other research interests include the Pre-Columbian use of caves, Mesoamerican writing systems as well as rock art and comparative Amerindian mythology.


Erland Johnson


Erlend Johnson is a doctoral candidate at Tulane University and is affiliated with the Middle American Research Institute. Erlend’s research, which is directed by Marcello Canuto, focuses on the integrative strategies employed by the rulers of Maya polities as they expanded into and absorbed surrounding populations. Erlend’s doctoral research has taken place in the Cucuyagua and Sensenti valleys of Western Honduras, 25 and 50km southeast of the polity of Copan respectively.



Mary Kate Kelly



Mary Kate Kelly is a PhD Candidate at Tulane University, studying the linguistics of Maya hieroglyphs. Her research looks at the linguistic variation present in the inscriptions, in order to gain better insight as to the distribution of different, but related, linguistic groups among the Maya. Her interests lie at the crossroads of language, literature, and culture, and extend to historical linguistics and the world’s writing systems.






Maxime Lamoureux St Hilaire 

Maxime Lamoureux-St-Hilaire is a Ph.D. Candidate in Anthropology at Tulane University and is affiliated to the Middle American Research Institute. His dissertation research – directed by Marcello Canuto – focuses on the political institution of the Classic Maya royal court. Max investigates this topic by excavating the regal palace of La Corona, Guatemala. Over the years, Max has dug holes looking for old things around Guatemala, Belize, Mexico, Honduras, and Québec.



Simon Martin is an Associate Curator at the University of Pennsylvania Museum. His research interests focus on Classic Maya history, politics and religion, and is perhaps best know for his two co-authored books "Chronicle fo the Maya Kings and Queens" and "Courtly Art of the Ancient Maya". Since 1994 he has conducted epigraphic fieldwork at the site of Calakmul, Campeche, Mexico and has written extensively on the historicala nd political ramifications of the "Snake" dynasty that made this city its Late Classic home.

Matthew RestallMatthew Restall is Edwin Erle Sparks Professor of History and Anthropology, and Director of Latin American Studies, at the Pennsylvania State University.  He was educated at Oxford and UCLA.  He is Chair of the Association of Friends and Fellows and a Governor of the Board of the John Carter Brown Library at Brown University.  He edited Ethnohistory journal for a decade, will be editor of the HAHR for the next five years, is the founding editor of Penn State Press’s Latin American Originals series, and edits Cambridge University Press’s Cambridge Latin American Studies book series.  The recipient of NEH, Guggenheim, and IAS-Princeton fellowships, Restall has over the last two decades published twenty books and sixty articles and essays.  His work focuses on three specializations: colonial Mesoamerica, primarily Yucatan and the Maya (e.g. The Maya World; Maya Conquistador; and 2012 and the End of the World); the Spanish Conquest (e.g. Seven Myths of the Spanish Conquest; Invading Guatemala; and the forthcoming The Meeting); and Africans in Spanish America (e.g. The Black Middle: Africans, Mayas, and Spaniards in Colonial Yucatan).  He is currently writing a book on early Belize.

Scott Simmons


Scott Simmons is a Professor of Archaeology at the University of North Carolina Wilmington.  He received his PhD from the University of Colorado and is interested in ancient Maya technologies and economies.  His recent research has been on archaeometallurgy in Mesoamerica, specifically the Maya area, coastal Maya trade, and craft specialization.  Much of his research has been in Belize, beginning at Tipu and most recently at the large Maya site of Lamanai.  Currently his work is focused on Ambergris Caye, Belize where he is examining coastal trade and economic interactions between island and mainland communities.



Maggie Morgan Smith


Maggie Morgan-Smith is a PhD Candidate in Anthropology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and is affiliated with their Research Labs of Archaeology. Maggie has spent the last several field seasons conducting survey, oral history, archival research, and household excavation for her dissertation with the Bolonchen Regional Archaeological Project in the Puuc Hills. Maggie’s investigations have focused on labor and landownership in the historic community of Rancho Kiuic.



Steph Strauss 

Stephanie M. Strauss is a Harrington Doctoral Fellow in Art History at the University of Texas at Austin. Her dissertation on Epi-Olmec hieroglyphic writing and visual culture (co-supervised by Julia Guernsey and David Stuart) builds on her previous research into signalling practices in the Formative era.




Jason YaegerJason Yaeger is a professor of archaeology at University of Texas, San Antonio who has focused his research on the organization of ancient households and communities, urbanism, landscapes and environments, the relationship between climate change and culture change, material culture and identity, ethnohistory, the politics of archaeological research, and Maya epigraphy and iconography. Much of his research has sought to understand the organization of Classic Maya rural communities and the practices, institutions, and constructs that linked rural householders into extra-community socio-political entities. Jason has surveyed the countryside in Belize’s Mopan River valley, mapped hundreds of houses and agricultural terraces, and excavated several rural houses in detail. His investigations also have taken him to the larger centers like Xunantunich, where he’s excavated monumental temples and palaces. His current research focuses on documenting the changing relationships between Xunantunich and the rival center of Buenavista and understanding how competition between these two polities impacted the people who lived in the intervening countryside.

Marc Zender


Marc Zender received his PhD from the University of Calgary in 2004, and he is presently an Assistant Professor of Anthropology and Linguistics at Tulane University. He has taught linguistics, epigraphy, and Mesoamerican languages at the University of Calgary (2002-2004), Harvard University (2005-2011), and Tulane University (2011-present). Marc’s research interests include anthropological and historical linguistics, comparative writing, and decipherment, with a regional focus on Mesoamerica (particularly Mayan and Nahuatl/Aztec), and he is the author of numerous books and articles exploring these topics. Marc is also the editor of The PARI Journal, and (with Joel Skidmore) maintains, a key internet resource for the study of Mesoamerican cultures.




Meaghan Peuramäki-Brown is an archaeologist who specializes in Maya material culture and settlement studies. She received her MA in Artefact Studies from the Institute of Archaeology at the University College London (2004), and her PhD in Archaeology from the University of Calgary (2013). She is an Assistant Professor of Archaeology at Athabasca University, and an Adjunct Assistant Professor in the Department of Anthropology and Archaeology at the University of Calgary, both in Alberta, Canada. Meaghan is the Principal Investigator of the Stann Creek Regional Archaeology Project in Belize.







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