Staff and Board

Shumla Staff:

Executive Director: Jessica Lee | email
Interim Archaeology Director: Phil Dering, PhD. | email
Science Director:
 Karen Steelman, PhD. | email
Staff Archaeologist: Jerod Roberts | email
Staff Archaeologist: Vicky Roberts | email
Staff Archaeologist: Rich McAuliffe | email
Development and Operations Coordinator:
 Veronica Hackett | email
Librarian and Technical Editor: Missy Harrington | email

Board of Directors:

President:   Kay Watt, San Antonio, TX
Vice President and Head of Research:   Carolyn Boyd, PhD., San Marcos, TX
Secretary:   Pansy Price, Austin, TX
David Graf, Del Rio, TX
Board Members:
Cami Cadena, Del Rio, TX
Robert Clark, Houston, TX
Lacy Finley, Austin, TX
Nancy Kenmotsu, Yakima, WA
Charles Lohrmann, Austin, TX
David Pipes, Boerne, TX
Elton Prewitt, Austin, TX
Emeritus Board Members:
Bill Cauthorn, Del Rio, TX

Jessica Lee

Jessica Lee

Executive Director

In March 2015, Jessica Lee began her tenure as Shumla’s Executive Director. She leads the administration and development efforts of our growing organization. Prior to joining Shumla, Jessica served as a Senior Consultant in the Communications and Change Management Practice at Towers Watson—an international professional services firm. Before Towers Watson, she worked at the Smithsonian Institution and Crow Canyon Archaeological Center. Jessica has a B.A. in Archaeology from Texas A&M University and an M.A. in Human Geography from the University of Texas at Austin.

Along with her expertise and proven leadership, Jessica has a long history with Shumla and a true passion for the work we do. She studied under Dr. Carolyn Boyd while attending Texas A&M, and was the first employee of the organization after it was founded in 1998, acting as Assistant to the Director. She joined the Board of Directors in January, 2013, taking on the roles of Board Secretary and Chair of the Marketing and Development Committee. Now, as Director of the unique organization she helped found, she has truly come full circle.

Karen Steelman, PhD

Karen Steelman, PhD

Science Director

Dr. Karen L. Steelman is the director of Shumla’s new 14C plasma oxidation laboratory and a key member of Shumla’s Research Leadership Team. Trained as an archaeological chemist, Dr. Steelman is a leading international rock art researcher with over 40 peer-reviewed archaeology publications. Prior to joining the staff at Shumla, Dr. Steelman was a Full Professor of Chemistry at the University of Central Arkansas, having taught there for over 12 years. She was a long time friend and collaborator with the Shumla team. We were thrilled to add her to the staff in January 2017.

Karen received a Bachelor of Arts in Chemistry from Hendrix College in Conway, Arkansas and a PhD in Analytical Chemistry from Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas. Under the mentorship of Dr. Marvin W. Rowe (another long-time researcher in the Lower Pecos), Karen had the opportunity to blend her two interests – physical science and archaeology. As a recipient of a Watson Fellowship, Karen also studied art conservation at museums in Costa Rica, Chile, Australia, and Great Britain. Karen uses chemical analyses to identify pigments used by ancient artists and to radiocarbon date ancient rock paintings. Her methods include portable x-ray fluorescence, X-ray diffraction, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, plasma oxidation, and accelerator mass spectrometry.

Carolyn Boyd, PhD

Carolyn Boyd, PhD

Founder, Shumla Endowed Research Professor and (ex officio) Head of Research at Shumla

In 1998, artist-turned-archaeologist Dr. Carolyn Boyd, founded an organization to preserve, study and share the unique and endangered ancient art of the Lower Pecos Canyonlands. Since then, Shumla has been a center of archaeological research, heritage preservation, community outreach and education for students of all ages.

Dr. Boyd received her PhD from Texas A&M University. She serves as the Shumla Endowed Research Professor in the Department of Anthropology at Texas State University and as a member of the Shumla Board of Directors. In this role, she is part of the Shumla Research Leadership Team, acting as ex officio Head of Research. She is the author of Rock Art of the Lower Pecos, published in 2003 by Texas A&M University Press and The White Shaman Mural: An Enduring Creation Narrative, published by the University of Texas Press in the fall of 2016 and winner of the 2017 Society for American Archaeology Scholarly Book Award. She has been published in numerous peer reviewed journals, such as AntiquityAmerican AntiquityLatin American AntiquityRevista Iberoamericana de Lingüística, and Archaeometry and has contributed chapters in several edited volumes. Boyd gives numerous lectures around the country and abroad, serves on graduate committees.