Project Team

Chief Mission Officer Susan C. Ryan

Susan C. Ryan, Ph.D. (University of Arizona), is Crow Canyon Archaeological Center’s Chief Mission Officer. She codirected the Shields Pueblo excavation project from 1998 to 2000 and was project director of the Albert Porter Pueblo excavation project from 2001 to 2004. As Chief Mission Officer, Susan aligns the Center’s mission with ongoing education, research, and American Indian initiatives. Her research interests include the nature and extent of Chaco influence in the northern Southwest, the A.D. 1130–1180 drought, and the built environment.


Kellam ThrogmortonKellam Throgmorton, Ph.D. (Binghamton University), is Crow Canyon’s Supervisory Archaeologist for the Northern Chaco Outliers Project. His research interests include early villages, sociopolitical organization, landscape archaeology, and architecture. Kellam’s dissertation considered Chacoan landscapes as a form of political action, and he conducted fieldwork at two Chacoan outlier communities—Morris 40 (near Farmington, NM), and Padilla Wash (in Chaco Culture National Historical Park). He has assisted in research at numerous outliers, including Chimney Rock, Las Ventanas, and Aztec North.


Rebecca (Becky) HammondRebecca (Becky) Hammond, A.F.A. (Fine Arts, Institute of American Indian Arts), joined Crow Canyon as an Educator in 1997 and is currently the American Indian Initiatives Coordinator. In the years since, she has taught participants of all ages, including school group programs, teen camps, and adult travel programs. As a member of the Ute Mountain Ute Tribe, she brings a cultural perspective to Crow Canyon’s work. Taught by her grandmother in traditional beading techniques, she enjoys drawing on both traditional Ute and ancestral Pueblo designs to create her own style of beaded artwork.


Tyson HughesTyson Hughes, B.A. (Fort Lewis College), is the Education Manager at Crow Canyon. He has been involved with Crow Canyon since he attended programs here as a high school student. As an archaeologist, he has worked in many areas throughout the country, but his passion lies in the archaeology of southwestern Colorado where he grew up. As an educator, he enjoys sharing his knowledge of this region. He is an avid flintknapper and specializes in prehistoric lithic technologies.


Porter SwentzellPorter Swentzell (Santa Clara Pueblo), Ph.D. (Arizona State University). Porter Swentzell is from Santa Clara Pueblo, where he grew up participating in traditional life in his community and developed an interest in language and cultural preservation. He is Chair and Assistant Professor of Indigenous Liberal Studies at the Institute of American Indian Arts, a Regent for Northern New Mexico College, and serves on the board of the Native American Endowment Fund. Porter holds a Ph.D. in Justice Studies from Arizona State University, a M.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies with Concentrations in History and Political Science from Western New Mexico University, and a B.A. in Integrated Studies with an Emphasis in Pueblo Indian Studies from Northern New Mexico College. He lives at Santa Clara Pueblo along with his fiancée and three children.


Lois Ellen FrankTessie Naranjo (Santa Clara Pueblo), Ph.D. (University of New Mexico), is an enrolled member of Santa Clara Pueblo. She has served as consultant to museums, language programs, and various agencies engaged in language and cultural preservation. She was co-Director of the Northern Pueblos Institute from 2005-2010 at the Northern New Mexico College and helped establish the A.A. and B.A. degrees in Pueblo Indian Studies. More recently, she has been working for Pojoaque Pueblo as consultant on the Wia Di Powa or They Came Back Project, bringing back home, on long term loan, one hundred Tewa ancestral pots from the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, D.C.



Josephina Chang-OrderJosie Chang-Order, Ph.D. (University of Colorado), is a former Crow Canyon educator. She received her Ph.D. in Educational Foundations, Policy, and Practice from the University of Colorado Boulder in 2019. She currently manages field trips at the History Colorado Center in Denver, where she also facilitated school programs for several years. Her research interests include the perspectives of young people of color on representations of the past; diversity, equity, accessibility, and inclusion in museums; and connected learning.


Dr. Ben Bellorado, Laboratory Manager Chang-OrderBen Bellorado, Ph.D. (University of Arizona) is Crow Canyon Archaeological Center’s Laboratory Manager who focuses on Indigenous cultures in the northern Southwest. For over 20 years, Ben has studied the material cultures of Native American peoples who lived in the Four Corners area. Ben has studied a diversity of topics over his career ranging from maize agriculture, to ceramic analysis, to experimental archaeology, and ethnography. Ben’s recent research focuses on documenting at-risk archaeological sites in Bears Ears National Monument, using tree-ring dating to date these sites, and revisiting old museum collections of ancient clothing.


Jill_BlumenthalJill Blumenthal, Education Coordinator and Volunteer Program Manager, Mesa Verde National Park