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Melissa Powell is the Curator of Collections and an Assistant Research Professor at the School for Human Evolution and Social Change (SHESC), where she directs the activities of the Center for Archaeology and Society Repository, including museum collections management and archaeological research projects. Powell serves on the faculty for the archaeology and museum studies programs.
Prior to joining ASU in 2018, Powell was an archaeologist with the Repatriation Office of the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of Natural History, where she worked with tribes from the US Southwest, Northwest, and Alaska Native communities. She was previously Curator of Archaeology at the Museum of Indian Arts and Culture/ Laboratory of Anthropology in New Mexico.
Powell's research interests include the archaeology and prehistory of the North American Southwest, ceramic production and exchange, technological organization and craft specialization, museum anthropology, and consultation and collaboration with tribes and descendant communities. Powell has curated museum exhibitions and prepared publications on Huichol art and culture and on the archaeology of Casas Grandes in northern Mexico.
Archaeology and prehistory of the North American Southwest, museum anthropology, ceramic production and exchange, technological organization and craft specialization, ceramic sourcing studies, consultation and collaboration with tribes and descendant communities, curation of exhibitions and collections
Society for American Archaeology