Volume 30, Issue #1 - February 2019


From the SfAA

From the SfAA

President's Message

by Alexander "Sandy" Ervin. Policy and policy alternatives—how are we as applied anthropologists doing on the really big issues such as climate change, environmental destruction, and the economy that bedevil and may even threaten humanity’s survival? Are we registering any influence in the debates about them? Also, what do we have to deal with to make a significant difference? Let me illustrate with some perplexing situations that I have personally become most familiar with in recent years.

SfAA 2019 Election Results

President Alexander (Sandy) Ervin announced today the results of the 2019 Annual Election. Dr. Judith Freidenberg and Dr. Carlos Vélez-Ibáñez have been elected to three-year terms on the Board of Directors. Both Freidenberg and Vélez-Ibáñez will assume office on March 23, 2018, during the Spring Meeting of the Board. They will replace outgoing members, Ruthbeth Finerman and Bryan Tilt.

How You Can Help the SfAA

By Jennifer R. Wies (Treasurer), and Neil Hann (executive Director). Guess what? The way that people access articles from Human Organization and Practicing Anthropology makes a big difference for the Society and its members! Read on for how YOU can help our organization by the “click choices” that you make.

Founders Endowment

Submitted by Susan Andreatta Securing the ability of the Society to fulfill its mission is increasingly challenging in today’s world of social, political, and academic change and financial flux. Specific funds to support the participation of targeted groups, such as students and international scholars, have been developed, but are not sufficient to insure the long-term survival of the Society in the event of an unanticipated event or process beyond the control of the Board and membership.

Annual Meeting

Annual Meeting

From the Program Chair

by Michael Paolisso, 2019 Program Chair, University of Maryland. In less than two months, we will gather in Portland, Oregon, for our Society’s 79th annual meeting. It will be a time for us to discuss how best to engage in research and practice that fits the challenges of our times.


SfAA is pleased to announce tours during the 2019 annual meeting at Portland, OR. We will be taking online tour registrations through March 8.


The SfAA provides workshop opportunities at the annual meetings. At the workshops, participants can meet with other attendees and develop their professional skills. Be sure to check some out!

Hackenberg Prize

The Society for Applied Anthropology (SfAA) is pleased to announce that the 2019 Robert A. and Beverly H. Hackenberg Prize will be presented to Jeremy Spoon (Portland State University associate professor of anthropology and senior fellow at The Mountain Institute), Richard Arnold (Pahrump Paiute Tribe), and their collaborators at the society’s annual meeting in Portland on March 21.

Paredes Memorial Plenary

Native American leaders strive to balance traditional heritage with contemporary cultural influences, while anticipating future impacts on traditional culture.

Michael Kearney Memorial Lecture

Keynote Speaker is Yolanda T. Moses with Commentators Faye V. Harrison and Deborah A. Thomas.

Folly of Frack

Attention extrAction & environment TIG and all people interested in climate disruption! On March 19 at noon, Folly of Frack will be presented in the Hilton's Pavilion East Ballroom.


Peter Guarnaccia organized a Roundtable for the upcoming SfAA Meetings in Portland on his new book on Immigration, Diversity and Student Journeys to Higher Education. The panelists include Yolanda Moses, Jean Schensul, and Alex Stepick.


by Daniel Ginsberg, PhD; Manager, Education, Research and Professional Development; American Anthropological Association. I am excited to announce a panel we have had accepted for SfAA Portland 2019. Our goal is to discuss how pre-college anthropology might be made more widely available.

Performative Discussion by Peter Morin

Peter Morin is a Tahltan First Nation (matrilineal) and French-Canadian (patrilineal) performance artist whose works examine colonization in the Americas, decolonizing methodologies, Indigenous cultural sovereignty, and arts-based research methodologies.

"Let's Get it Done!" Roundtable

Participants in the National Science Foundation (NSF) 2017 Ethnographic Field School and community members and scholars from the Health Equity Alliance of Tallahassee continue their dialogue on race and racism at this year’s SfAA Annual Meetings in Portland, Oregon.

Building International Research Linkages

by Robyn Eversole. A recognised recipe for innovation is knowledge exchange with ‘the other’: whether academics working together across disciplines, practitioners collaborating across sectors, or university, industry and community engaging with each other.

Ethnography and Meaningful Student Engagement

by Kate Sullivan and Kristin Koptiuch. Put your students to work doing ethnographic field research and you will learn as they learn, she advised. So, I built my first class (and many thereafter) around ethnographic field .



Sol Tax Distinguished Service Award

The Sol Tax Distinguished Service Award will be presented to Dr. Robert R. Alvarez, Professor Emeritus, University of California, San Diego.

Pelto Award Applications Due

If you have foreign partners who you would like to bring to the 2020 meetings, and you need to find travel funding to bring them, the deadline for application for the Pertti J. Pelto International Travel Award is February 15, 2019

P.K. New Award

President Alexander M. Ervin has announced that a panel of senior social scientists selected the winners of the 2019 Peter K. New Student Research Competition.

2019 Student Endowed Award

The Society for Applied Anthropology is pleased to announce the results of the Competition for the Student Endowed Award for 2019.

Beatrice Medicine Awards 2019

The Beatrice Medicine Travel Award Scholarship celebrates the life and legacy of Dr. Beatrice Medicine, an internationally prominent anthropologist. This heritage found reflection in her life's work - an impressive record of teaching, research, and service, which focused on understanding and tolerance within the broader human condition and particularly toward Native peoples.

Del Jones Awards 2019

The Society for Applied Anthropology is pleased to announce the results of the Competition for the Del Jones Travel Awards for 2019. The two awardees are Tashelle Wright and Mecca Burris. Each will receive a travel scholarship of $500 to offset the expenses of attending the 79th Annual Meeting of the Society in Portland, OR, March 19-23, 2019.

Involuntary Resettlement Student Travel Award

The Society for Applied Anthropology is pleased to announce the results of the Competition for the Michael M. Cernea Involuntary Resettlement Student Travel Award for 2019. The winner is Emma Banks,a PhD Candidate in the Anthropology Department, Vanderbilt University.

Spicer Travel Awards

The Society for Applied Anthropology is pleased to announce the results of the Competition for the Spicer Travel Awards for 2019. The two awardees are Elena Lesley and Jelena Golubovic.

John Bodley Student Travel Award

The Society for Applied Anthropology is pleased to announce the results of the Competition for the John Bodley Student Travel Award for 2019. The winner is Eric Thomas.

Gil Kushner Memorial Travel Awards

The Society for Applied Anthropology is pleased to announce the results of the Competition for the Gil Kushner Memorial Travel Awards for 2019. The awardees are Erika Finestone and Daniel Bagheri Sarvestani.

Committees & TIGs

Committees & TIGs

Anthropology of Higher Education TIG

by James H. McDonald, Ph.D., University of Montevallo. As we inch ever closer to the SfAAs in Portland, I am happy to report that the Anthropology of Higher Education TIG has 25 sessions and 94 presentations.

ExtrACTION & Environment TIG

by Jeanne Simonelli, Wottsamotta U. Counseling, Anthropology WFU and SUNY-Oneonta. Plays, Sessions, Roundtables and Discussions that Engage Change in Turbulent Times

Gender Based Violence TIG

by Elizabeth Wirtz. In the age of #MeTooand #TimesUp, Gender Based Violence (GBV) has become a hot-button issue. These movements bring to the forefront the prevalence of sexual abuse and demand due attention to the ways in which GBV is embedded in every institution, including anthropology.

Risk & Disaster TIG

by Jennifer Trivedi, Melissa Sedlacik, & Thomas Hanson. The Risk & Disaster TIG offers a space for discussions regarding anthropological and applied work related to risk and disaster issues around the world.

News from Members & Other Associations

News from Members & Other Associations

Kathy M'Closkey Presented with Awards

Kathy M’Closkey, Adjunct Associate Professor at the University of Windsor, ON, was recently given two awards in recognition of her research and activism. The Navajo board of Dine’ Studies granted her the “Excellence in Diné Studies” award during the 21stconference held at Diné College, Tsaile, AZ last October.

NAPA Careers

The National Association for the Practice of Anthropology (NAPA) will hold an exciting new event at the SfAA meeting in Portland in March.

The NAPA-OT Field School

The NAPA-OT Field School in Antigua, Guatemala is now recruiting anthropology, occupational therapy, global health, and students in related disciplines for its four-week summer session: June 17 - July 12, 2019.

Oral History

Oral History

An Interview with J. Thomas May

An Interview of J. Thomas May for the SfAA Oral History Project.



In Memoriam: Wendy Ashmore

Dr. Wendy Ashmore long recognized as one of the foremost theoreticians in Maya archaeological research in the areas of archaeological settlement patterns, landscape studies, household archaeology, spatial studies and critical gender analysis, passed away peacefully on January 8, 2019 in Riverside, California after a long battle with two auto-immune diseases.

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