I am a historical and environmental anthropologist and have held a joint appointment as Research Anthropologist at the Southwest Center and Professor of Anthropology at the School of Anthropology of the University of Arizona since 2003. I have conducted ethnographic and ethnohistoric research in the Southwest and Northern Mexico since 1971. Prior to my current position, I directed the Mexican Heritage Project at the Arizona Historical Society from 1982-1984, and was Curator of Ethnohistory and then Director of the Office of Ethnohistorical Research at ASM from 1984 to 2003. In 2016, I was named a Distinguished Outreach Professor at UA.
I have written or co-edited fourteen books and monographs including Arizona: A History, Revised Edition (UA Press 2012), Landscapes of Fraud: Mission Tumacácori, the Baca Float, and the Betrayal of the O’odham (UA Press 2006), Stitching the West Back Together: Conservation of Working Landscapes(with Susan Charnley and Gary Nabhan: U Chicago, 2014), and Moquis and Kastiilam: Hopis, Spaniards and the Trauma of History, Vol. I (with S. Koyiyumptewa, A. Daughters, D. Brenneman, TJ Ferguson, L. Kuwanwisiwma, and L. Lomayestewa, UA Press, 2015). An volume entitled The Border and Its Bodies: The Embodiment of Risk on the U.S.-México Line, edited by myself and Randall McGuire, will be published by the University of Arizona Press in Fall 2019.
Since 1997, I've been involved in landuse politics in Arizona and the Southwest. I was Chair of the Canoa Heritage Foundation during the fight to prevent the southern half of the San Ignacio de la Canoa Spanish land grant from being developed. That land was purchased by Pima County in 2001, and I now serve as chair of Pima County's Canoa Ranch Conservation Committee.
I have also been heavily involved in Pima County's visionary Sonoran Desert Conservation Plan (SDCP) since 1998, chairing the Ranch Conservation Technical Advisory Team. I am a member of the county's Conservation Acquisition Commission, which advises the county on lands to purchase in order to conserve biodiversity, open space, and working ranches.
I currently serve on the board of the Altar Valley Conservation Alliance (AVCA), a not-for-profit organization of ranchers dedicated to the conservation of open space, biodiversity, and working ranches in the Altar Valley southwest of Tucson. The AVCA was awarded the Quivira Coalition's Clarence Burch Award in 2010.
I was President of the Anthroplogy & Environment Section of the American Anthropological Association from 2003 to 2005. I received the Sonoran Institute’s Faces of Conservation: Sustainable Communities Award in 2007, the Earl Carroll Fellowship from the School of Social and Behavioral Sciences at the University of Arizona in 2009, the Alene Dunlap Smith and Paul Smith Award for Lifetime Achievement from the Tucson Pima County Historical Commission in 2016, and the Byron Cummings Award from the Arizona Archaeological and Historical Society in 2016.