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Submitted by admin on Wed, 04/20/2016 - 8:33am

Geoffrey McCafferty

Geoffrey McCafferty (PhD SUNY Binghamton, 1993) is a Professor in the Department of Anthropology and Archaeology. His specialization is the archaeology of Mesoamerica and Central America, with ongoing research in Pacific Nicaragua. Other research projects include urbanism and complexity at the pre-Columbian religious center of Cholula (Mexico), and issues of social identity (especially gender) in ancient Mesoamerica. He is on the Executive Board of the Canadian Latin American Archaeology Society, and is past editor of the Cambridge University Press journal Ancient Mesoamerica. Since coming to the University of Calgary in 1999, Dr. McCafferty has directed a series of excavation projects along the shore of Lake Cocibolca in Nicaragua to investigate ethnohistorical accounts of migration and colonization by ethnic groups from central Mexico. Results challenge the entrenched cultural identity of 'mexicanized' Nicaragua in the final centuries before European contact. Instead, the material culture indicates a broad interaction sphere including parts of Honduras, El Salvador, and Costa Rica. In the process of conducting these investigations, more than 100 undergraduate students have been introduced to Nicaraguan archaeology, and numerous graduate students have produced MA and PhD theses. Another ongoing research project is done in collaboration with Sharisse McCafferty, focusing on pre-Columbian textile production and its relationship to engendered practice. This has been the topic of more than a dozen publications using data from both Mesoamerica and Central America. Gender research integrates archaeological evidence with ethnohistory and art history, especially imagery from Mixtec pictorial manuscripts. Cholula is widely regarded as the site of the largest pyramid in ancient Mesoamerica, with an occupation history of over 3000 years. Dr. McCafferty's long research interest has included questions of ethnic change and settlement sustainability, architectural history, household organization, native resistance to the Spanish colonial occupation, and the Cholula religious system. In addition to his scholarly research, he is also actively involved with community groups seeking to preserve the archaeological site from destructive development projects.


Greg Purdy

Mr. Purdy holds an Honors B.A from Dalhousie University and an M.A. in International Relations from the University of Toronto.   He joined XPERA Corp. as their International Risk Advisor in 2009 after 33 years with the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) and Royal Canadian Mounted Police Security Service.   Having worked in the Service’s foreign liaison, counter-terrorism, and counter-intelligence departments, he has extensive experience in Latin America and the Caribbean, specifically Mexico, Guatemala, Colombia, Venezuela and Cuba.  He holds a fellowship with the Latin America Research Center (LARC) at the University of Calgary and is a member of the Canadian Council for the Americas (CCA) and the Canadian International Council (CIC).   He has presented to various academic, business and government audiences on a variety of current Latin America security issues.

Harrie Vredenburg

Dr. Vredenburg is a leading scholar in the areas of competitive strategy, innovation, sustainable development and corporate governance in the global energy and natural resource industries and serves as the Suncor Energy Chair in Competitive Strategy and Sustainable Development. He was one of the visionaries who founded Haskayne’s Global Energy Executive MBA and has served as its Academic Director since its inception. He has authored or coauthored more than 50 frequently cited articles in leading international publications including Strategic Management Journal,Organization ScienceMIT Sloan Management Review and Harvard Business Review. He has also coauthored government reports on industry regulation, innovation and competitiveness and on nuclear energy and he consults to industry. He has served on the Alberta Environmental Appeals Board, a quasi-judicial appeals board, and has testified before the Federal Senate Finance Committee and the Federal Senate Energy, Environment and Natural Resources Committee on energy matters. He was the founding director from 1994 to 2007 of Haskayne's International Resource Industries and Sustainability Centre (now part of the Centre for Corporate Sustainability), co-founder and academic director of the Master of Science Program in Sustainable Energy Development from 1994 to 2006, and inspired the launch of Haskayne’s MBA concentration in Global Energy Management and Sustainable Development. Harrie holds an appointment as an International Research Fellow at Oxford University’s Saïd Business School in the UK. He previously taught at McGill University and was a visiting professor at the Rotterdam School of Management at Erasmus University and at the University of British Columbia. He holds a PhD in strategic management from the University of Western Ontario.

Hendrik Kraay

Hendrik Kraay is professor of history at the University of Calgary. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Texas at Austin (1995) and subsequently held a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of British Columbia. Since 1997, he has taught at the University of Calgary. He is the author of Race, State, and Armed Forces in Independence-Era Brazil: Bahia, 1790s-1840s (Stanford University Press, 2001) and Days of National Festivity in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 1823-1889 (Stanford University Press, 2013); the latter won the Conference on Latin American History’s 2014 Warren Dean Memorial Prize for the best book on Brazilian history. In addition to numerous articles and book chapters published in both English and Portuguese, Kraay has edited or coedited the following books: Afro-Brazilian Culture and Politics: Bahia, 1790s-1990s (M.E. Sharpe, 1998); Nova História Militar Brasileira (with Celso Castro and Vitor Izecksohn, Editora da Fundação Getúlio Vargas, 2004); I Die with My Country: Perspectives on the Paraguayan War, 1864-1870 (with Thomas L. Whigham, University of Nebraska Press, 2004); and Negotiating Identities in Modern Latin America (University of Calgary Press, 2007). In 2004, Kraay was visiting professor at the Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro. His research has been supported by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council’s Standard Research Grant and Insight Grant programs. In 2014-15, Kraay served as acting director of the Latin American Research Centre. His current research projects are focused on the Dois de Julho festival in Bahia and the change in pre-Lenten celebrations from entrudo to carnaval. Fellow interview with Dr. Kraay. 


José Gordillo

Professor Gordillo has a PhD and a MA in the field of Latin American History granted by the State University of New York at Stony Brook (USA), and a BA in Economics from the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (Spain) and the Universidad Mayor de San Simon (Bolivia). Since 2009, he has been teaching Latin American History and Culture courses at Mount Royal University, Saint Mary’s University and the University of Calgary.

Kathryn Reese-Taylor

Dr. Kathryn Reese-Taylor is an Associate Professor in the Department of Anthropology and Archaeology at the University of Calgary.  She has directed several projects in the Maya region at important sites, such as Naachtun in Peten, Guatemala, and is currently the director of the Yaxnohcah Archaeological Project in the southern Campeche, Mexico. The project focuses on landscape archaeology, political economy and ideology of the lowland Maya during the Preclassic periods (900 BCE to AD 150).  Dr. Reese-Taylor has written numerous articles, chapters and edited one volume, Landscape and Power in Ancient Mesoamerica, which highlights her research into this early period.  In addition, she has published articles and chapters, as well as presented lectures, on the role of women in Prehispanic Maya society and is currently completing her book, Maya Noblewomen, to be published by the University of Texas Press. Fellow interview with Dr. Reese-Taylor. 

Luis Torres

School of Languages, Linguistics, Literatures & Cultures

Meaghan M. Peuramäki-Brown

I am an anthropological archaeologist who maintains an active, cross-cultural, theory-based research program, incorporating significant collaborative and cross-disciplinary pursuits. My interests to date have focused on the built environment and exchange-consumption studies of material culture: investigating how individuals, households, and communities negotiate their integration in locally and regionally defined socio-political and economic institutions, and the impact of such negotiation on overall processes of urbanization. While my past research has focused heavily on the archaeology of households and communities, my more recent work considers larger issues related to landscape and urbanism among the ancient Maya. My current fieldwork is focused on rapid resource-based urbanism (rapid growth communities) at Alabama, Belize, and on multiple nuclei urbanism at Yaxnohcah, Mexico. Although I address questions of urbanism through “ancient” lenses, I also engage with modern urban issues, theories, and methods in conjunction with the past; for example, I am currently exploring, with colleagues, my interest in sustainable urban planning through the application of agent-simulation programs to develop testable models of pedestrian movement/crowd control in ancient and modern urban centres around the world. Fellow interview with Dr. Peuramäki-Brown. 

Nina Hrycak

Fellow Emerita Dr. Hrycak continues to be involved in activities related to community development, refugees and immigrants, and international health and development.  She has served on numerous committees and projects related to these research interests.  In recent years, she has focused on issues of social justice and community engagement.  She has presented at national and international conferences on issues impacting refugees and immigrants, specifically Central American refugees.  She has served on the board of the Canadian Association for Participatory Development, a project activity mainly in Colombia South America.  Her international interests have taken her to sites in many countries of the world with NGO and faith-based organizations where she has conducted community health workshops, team building activities, assisted in orphanages and even visited a prison in Ukraine.  Dr. Hrycak is a recent recipient of the Long Service award by the College and Association of Registered Nurses of Alberta (CARNA) in recognition of more than 40 years in the profession of registered nursing.

Pablo Policzer, Director

LARC Director Pablo Policzer is an Associate Professor of Political Science at the University of Calgary. A specialist in comparative politics, his research focuses on the evolution of violent conflict - especially among armed actors such as militaries, police forces, and non-state armed groups - in authoritarian and democratic regimes. He held the Canada Research Chair in Latin American Politics (2005-2015), and is a Fellow at the Centre for Military and Strategic Studies, He was also an active Fellow at the Latin American Research Centre before being appointed Director in 2015. His book The Rise and Fall of Repression in Chile (Notre Dame University Press, 2009) was named a Choice Magazine "Outstanding Academic Title", and won the 2010 award for best book in Comparative Politics from the Canadian Political Science Association. He obtained his PhD in political science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and his BA (Honours, First Class) in political science from the University of British Columbia.