Skip to Content

Senior Scientist Profiles

Senior Scientist Profiles

Dr. Todd Ahlman

Todd M. Ahlman is the Director of Texas State University’s Center for Archaeological Studies (CAS) and serves as the project’s principal investigator. Since becoming CAS director in January 2014, he has supervised over 3,000 hours of undergraduate and graduate student volunteer time with CAS, undergraduate interns, and undergraduate student workers. He has worked to develop CAS’s programs that incorporate undergraduates in archaeological research and publications. Recent intern and student worker research is incorporated in a public archaeology internet project, Exploring Spring Lake: the Archaeology and Culture of One of America's Oldest Communities. In 2015, he directed an archaeological field school on St. Kitts. Ahlman is the Chair of the Council of Texas Archeologists CRM and Academic Archaeology committee and a member of the Society for Historical Archaeology’s Academic and Professional Training Committee. Ahlman’s research in the Caribbean focuses on military, institutional, and plantations sites. He has published in international and regional journals and edited volumes on these topics. Ahlman has taught undergraduate and graduate courses at the University of Montana, University of Tennessee, and Texas State University. He has directed undergraduate archaeological field schools in North America (Tennessee, North Carolina) and the Caribbean (St. Kitts).


Ashley H. McKeown is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Anthropology at Texas State University. Before joining the faculty at Texas State University, she was an Associate Professor in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Montana and included undergraduate and graduate students in her research in bioarchaeology and forensic anthropology. During her tenure at the University of Montana, McKeown supervised several undergraduate honor thesis projects and chaired over 20 MA thesis committees and 2 PhD dissertation committees and was awarded the Helen and Winston Cox Educational Excellence Award. At both Texas State University and the University of Montana, she has taught undergraduate and graduate courses, including courses directly pertinent to the current project such as Human Osteology, Methods in Skeletal Biology, Forensic and Mortuary Archaeology, and a graduate level Seminar in Bioarchaeology and Skeletal Biology. Both as an advisor and as an instructor, she has effectively interacted with students from a wide range of backgrounds and identities. McKeown’s experience includes excavation and analysis of historic burials from Jamestown, VA (early 17th century), Williamsburg, VA (17th or 18th century), Brimstone Hill on St. Kitts, W.I. (19th century), and Delaware (late 17th century-early 18th century) as well as serving as the Lead Project Osteologist for the Belize Valley Archaeological Reconnaissance project, which involves excavation, analysis and curation of ancient Maya burials from numerous sites. She has published and presented research on these sites in various venues including international and regional journals and international conferences.


Dr. Nick Herrmann

Nicholas P. Herrmann is an Associate Professor of Anthropology at Texas State University focused on Biological Anthropology and Archaeology. Dr. Herrmann recently joined the faculty at Texas State from Mississippi State University where he managed the Forensic Anthropology and Bioarcheology Laboratory (FABLab) and the Biological Anthropology Research Laboratory, and in 2014 received the Ralph E. Powe Research Excellence Award from the MSU Office of Research and Economic Development for the top researcher on campus. From 2008 to 2016, he oversaw research by one to three undergraduate students per semester examining various archaeological, archaeological prospection, bioarchaeological, and forensic anthropology projects. These students typically assisted graduate students working in the lab and committed 10 to 15 hours per week. In addition, he directed undergraduate field schools in the US southeast, Greece, and St. Croix. Prior to the Mississippi State University, Dr. Herrmann directed the GIS laboratory within the Archeological Research Laboratory at the University of Tennessee.


Suzanne L. Sanders, M.A. is the Consulting Archaeologist for SECAR and will serve as SECAR’s project manager. Ms. Sanders began her archeological career over 30 years ago working with The College of William and Mary field schools on Statia. Subsequently, she spent 28 years working in cultural resources management, serving as Principal Investigator for a wide variety of projects. Many of these projects focused on the historic and prehistoric period in the Caribbean, including Puerto Rico, The Bahamas, and U.S. Virgin Islands, allowing her to focus on her interest in various aspects of trade and the sugar plantation economy in the region. During her career in CRM, she instituted and then developed and managed a laboratory internship program that brought high school, undergraduate and graduate students into the laboratory, providing valuable exposure to working in archaeology in a non-academic setting. Throughout her career she continued to provide voluntary assistance to the archaeology program on Statia, bringing volunteers through Caribbean Volunteer Expeditions and Road Scholar, and working to mentor and train ECAR students, interns and volunteers. Since November 2015 she has served as Consulting Archaeologist for SECAR.