Staff

Our staff includes seasoned principal investigators, project directors, and project managers, as well as fully credentialed field and laboratory technicians. Staff skills cover a wide range of academic and field specialties including osteological, palaeoenvironmental, GIS, and archaeobotanical expertise. All supervisory and senior personnel exceed the U.S. Secretary of the Interior’s minimum qualifications standards for archaeologists and related fields.

Management Staff

Rona Ikehara-Quebral, Ph.D.

General Manager, Principal Investigator, Senior Bioarchaeologist

Rona has worked in Cultural Resources Management in Hawai‘i, Guam, and the Pacific-Asia region for over 35 years. She has directed or participated in over 90 burial projects (conducting positive identifications, burial recovery, inventory, and/or analysis of human skeletal remains) and over 75 archaeology projects in the Pacific Islands, Southeast Asia, and Ecuador. Her research interests include human skeletal biology, indicators of stress, paleopathology, health and social status, biocultural adaptations, cultural dental modification, and heritable variation.

J. Stephen Athens, Ph.D.

Manager, Senior Archaeologist

Steve has over 40 years of archaeological experience. He has been intensively involved in Cultural Resources Management as well as academic research at sites throughout the tropical Pacific and Ecuador. His areas of expertise include paleoenvironmental investigations and archaeological chronologies in Hawaii, Micronesia, and the Amazon, and he has also studied the origin and development of chiefdoms, and the history of maize use and other cultigens in the northern Andes. In 2020, Steve was the recipient of the Society for American Archaeology’s Award for Excellence in Cultural Resource Management.

Christopher W. Filimoehala, Ph.D.

Manager, Project Manager, Principal Investigator, GIS Specialist

Chris has over 16 years of research and field experience working throughout the Pacific region on over 100 projects in Hawai‘i, Rapa Nui, Sāmoa, Tonga, Tokelau, Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, and Okinawa. He has directed field crews on Hawai’i Island, Kauaiʻi, Maui, Molokaʻi Oʻahu, Guam, and Rota for large-scale archaeological inventory surveys, and supervised the laboratory analyses of materials collected during data recovery. In addition, he has research experience in the Great Basin region of North America. He specializes in the development of complex societies, landscape use and settlement patterns, spatial analysis, photogrammetry, and GPS & GIS applications in archaeology.

Darby Filimoehala, M.A.

Manager, Senior Archaeologist, Principal Investigator, Laboratory Manager, Faunal Analyst

Darby has over 13 years of research, field, and lab experience, and has completed projects throughout Hawai‘i, American Sāmoa, Fiji, the Mariana Islands, and Tokelau. She has conducted inventory- and reconnaissance-level surveys, testing, mapping, data recovery, monitoring, and technical laboratory-based projects. Her professional experience also includes collection management, curation, and digital archiving. She specializes in zooarchaeological analysis, particularly fish vertebrate fauna.

Alex E. Morrison, Ph.D.

Manager, Project Manager, Senior Archaeologist, GIS/GPS Specialist

Alex has been Principal Investigator on several large archaeological surveys, and has managed and directed emergency data recovery projects in Hawai‘i. He has extensive research experience in Hawai‘i, Micronesia, Ecuador, Fiji, the Cook Islands, American Sāmoa, and Rapa Nui. He is involved in a variety of academic research activities in paleoenvironmental reconstruction of coastal areas, computer modeling, geospatial analysis, remote sensing and geophysical techniques, and zooarchaeology.

Timothy M. Rieth, M.A.

Manager, Project Manager, Senior Archaeologist, Faunal Analyst

Tim has worked in Cultural Resources Management since 1998, on over 80 archaeology projects involving inventory- and reconnaissance-level surveys, subsurface testing, mapping, data recovery, and monitoring in Hawai‘i, Guam, Tinian, Palau, American Sāmoa, Fiji, Rapa Nui, South Korea, Japan, and the Solomon Islands. He also conducts academic research in Hawai‘i, Guam, and the Pacific-Asia region. His expertise includes vertebrate and invertebrate faunal analysis, artifact analyses, and chronological modeling.

Dane Shores, M.B.A.

Business Manager

Dane has over 30 years of business management experience in a wide range of industries including manufacturing, wholesale distribution, medicine, construction, non-profit, and professional services. He has led teams that managed corporate facilities relocations and teams implementing Enterprise Resource Planning software. He has consulted with start-up entities in the area of advanced technology market creation. He has extensive experience in organizational design, fiscal management and accountability, and employee benefit programs.

Archaeology Staff

H. Kaumakamanōkalanipō Anae, M.A.

Cultural Practitioner, Field Supervisor

Kaumakamanōkalanipō ensures and perpetuates cultural rites and protocols at archaeological sites, especially those that are culturally sensitive.  Her experience includes archaeological and cultural monitoring, data recovery, mapping conditioning assessment survey, research of Hawaiian newspapers and land documents, and report writing. She received her M.A. in Applied Archaeology, B.A. in Anthropology, and B.A. in Hawaiian Studies from the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa.

Matthew J. Bell, B.A., Grad.Cert. (GIS)

Technology Manager, Field Supervisor

Matt has over 15 years of archaeological field and research experience that includes projects in Hawai‘i, Rapa Nui, and American Sāmoa. He specializes in GIS database design and maintenance. He has experience supervising field and office work, as well as planning surveys, extensive field mapping experience, drone operation, and photogrammetry.

Brennan V. Chambers, B.A., M.A. in progress

Field Supervisor

Brennan has over 9 years of experience in field and laboratory research in the Pacific region, the mainland US, and Europe in the federal and private sectors. He holds a B.A. in Anthropology from SUNY Plattsburgh and is working towards an M.A. in Applied Archaeology at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa.

Fiona Fiala, M.A.

Assistant Bioarchaeologist, Archaeological Field Technician

Fiona received her B.A. and M.A. in Anthropology from the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa. Trained in biological anthropology, her research interests lie in human skeletal biology, human variation and adaptation, and forensic anthropology. Fiona has over 5 years of laboratory experience and has participated in archaeological fieldwork on O’ahu and Guam.

Jenna Golnik, B.A.

Archaeologist

Jenna is a recent graduate of University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. She is following her passion for archaeology and is honored to have her first field assignment on Guam. Adding to the knowledge she gained at university, this journey provides more experience in excavating, monitoring, and mapping. She wants to research the use and manufacture of lithics in different cultures in hopes of better understanding how these technologies were used in and around the household and also what role they played in ancient migration and trade.

Megan Gough, M.S.

Archaeological Field Technician

Megan received her M.S. in Forensic Anthropology from Boston University in Boston, Massachusetts.  She has participated in archaeological fieldwork on Guam.  Her research interests include forensic anthropology, human skeletal biology, taphonomy, and paleopathology.

Phirum Kem, B.A.

Field Supervisor

Phirum received a B.A. degree in archaeology from Cambodia’s Royal University of Fine Arts in 2010. He was trained by various national and international organizations (France, Japan, and the U.S.) in archaeological field methods, ceramic classification and restoration, and field ethnography. He has worked as a field technician for monitoring, data recovery, burial recovery, shovel testing, survey, and laboratory work in Hawaiʻi’s cultural resources management settings on over 20 projects on O‘ahu, Hawai’i Island, and Micronesia (Guam) for IARII and IA, and he has over 10 years of experience in Cambodia.

Daniel Knecht

Daniel P. Knecht, M.A.

GIS Director

Dan has over 10 years of archaeological field and laboratory research experience in the Pacific region, including Hawai‘i, Japan, and California. He is trained in Environmental Geography, and has worked on inventory survey, testing, data recovery, and monitoring projects across the state of Hawai‘i. His interests include the application of geospatial technologies such as GPS/GNSS, GIS-based research in Cultural Resources Management and long term data management strategies.

Michael C. Mlyniec, M.Sc

Project Director

Michael is an archaeologist with over 10 years of experience working all over the world. He has worked extensively on field and laboratory research in the Balkans and Central Asia. He specializes in prehistoric mining and metal production with a strong emphasis on experimental archaeology. He is trained in multiple geophysical techniques including GPR, fluxgate magnetometry, magnetic susceptibility, and the field application of pXRF and utilizes these tools to locate production areas within or peripheral to settlement sites.  His research interests include the social organization of production units, resource procurement strategies, and the interactions between different craft industries on technological evolution.

Juan Antonio Montero Nicolau, M.A.

Field Supervisor

Juanan has experience in the Mediterranean and Pacific regions, where he has participated in fieldwork, laboratory work, and monitoring. As an undergrad student, he participated in archaeological projects in Iberian Late Bronze Age, Iberian, and Roman sites, and he is currently working on projects focusing on Guam. He holds a B.A. in History from Castilla-La Mancha University, as well as a Master of International Affairs and a Master of Science in Social and Solidarity Economy/Circular Economy. Although he has been employed in other fields, he has come back to the shovel, trowel, and brushes with great enthusiasm.

Gail M. Murakami, B.A.

Wood Identification Lab Director, Archaeobotanist

Gail has over 35 years of experience in identification of charred and uncharred wood samples found in archaeological contexts. In a field she helped pioneer, she set up the very first Wood Identification Laboratory (WIDL) in the Pacific Basin region, which curates a reference wood collection from several Pacific island groups including the Hawaiian Islands. Her understanding of ecological associations in Hawaiian vegetation has been applied toward environmental reconstruction at Kaho‘olawe and other Pacific islands. In her capacity as the WIDL Manager and Archaeobotanist, Gail is responsible for the analysis of samples and the completion of technical reports for numerous Cultural Resource Management firms operating in Hawai‘i and Micronesia, which resulted in the identification of woods from various Pacific islands, including Guam, Sāmoa, Palau, and the Hawaiian Islands.

Matthew F. Napolitano, Ph.D.

Principal Investigator

Matt has more than 17 years of archaeological fieldwork and research experience working in island regions around the world. He has led or collaborated on projects in western Micronesia (Palau and Yap), the southeastern United States (St. Catherines Island, Georgia, and the Florida Keys), and the Caribbean (Barbados). His professional experience includes directing field projects, museum collections curation, laboratory management, and archival work. His academic research interests include island and coastal archaeology, chronology building, initial human colonization of islands, and ceramic analysis.

Robert A. Pacheco, M.A.

Principal Investigator, Ethnographer, Safety Officer

Rob is an archaeological principal investigator and ethnohistorical researcher who over the last 13 years has worked on more than 60 projects in Hawai‘i, Guam, Japan, and American Sāmoa. His professional experience includes archaeological survey, monitoring, excavation, mapping, GPS recording, photography, cultural interviews, archival research, supervision of work crews, and preparation of technical reports, including archaeological inventory surveys, cultural impact assessments, and NRHP/NHL nomination forms.

Jennifer A. Sasaki, B.A., B.S.

Archaeologist

Jenn has worked on data recovery, conditioning assessment survey, and monitoring projects on O‘ahu, the Big Island, Guam, and Okinawa. In addition to her academic training in anthropology, she also holds a degree in biochemistry.

Lucas S. Simonds, M.A.

Principal Investigator

Luke has more than 5 years’ experience in cultural resources management and historic preservation. He holds a B.A. in Classical Archaeology from Southern Adventist University and an M.A. in Maritime History and Archaeology from East Carolina University. He has worked on a variety of terrestrial and underwater archaeological projects, including survey, monitoring, mapping, and data recovery, in Israel, North Carolina, Albania, and the Mariana Islands. He also has experience in conducting NHPA Section 106 compliance reviews, preparing NRHP nominations, and compiling historic contexts. His research interests include underwater archaeology, historical archaeology, and conflict archaeology.

Lorena Snaer Cruz, B.A.

Guam Office Administrator, Archaeologist

Lorena is the Guam Office Administrator and Archaeologist. She graduated from the University of Guam with a Bachelor’s Degree in Anthropology. She helps manage the Guam office.

Emily van Zanten, B.A.

Field Supervisor, GIS Specialist, Safety Officer

Emily has worked in Cultural Resource Management for four years throughout the southwest contiguous United States including Texas, Oklahoma, and New Mexico, and most recently in Guam. She has acted as field supervisor over the past three years, conducting pedestrian surveys, shovel testing, and data recovery projects. Emily graduated from the University of Austin at Texas with a B.A. in Anthropology, Classical Archaeology, and Classical Languages. Her interests involve geospatial technologies and Greek settlement patterns.

Barbara VanBenthuysen, B.A.

Field Supervisor

Barbara has experience in the Pacific region, the mainland US, and South America in both the federal and private sectors participating in inventory, survey testing, data recovery, monitoring, and laboratory analysis. She holds a B.A. in Anthropology from Pennsylvania State University and hopes to return to school for her masters.

Carly Walker, B.A.

Project Director

Carly has over 5 years of archaeological field and laboratory experience, and has completed over 50 projects in the Pacific region, including Hawai’i and Guam. She has worked on reconnaissance and inventory-level surveys, testing, mapping, data recovery, monitoring, and laboratory-based projects. Carly received her B.A. in Archaeology and Art History from Saint Mary’s College of California. Her research interests include marine subsistence, archaeomalacology, ichthyarchaeology, archaeobotany, historical archaeology, and artifact analyses.

Tiffany Wiley, B.S.

Field Supervisor

Tiffany has over 5 years of archaeological experience in the Pacific and the Western U.S. She has worked on over 30 cultural resource projects in Hawai‘i, Guam, and the U.S. west coast, participating in inventory survey, testing, data recovery, monitoring, and laboratory analysis. Tiffany received her B.S. in Anthropology and Sociology at Eastern Oregon University in La Grande, Oregon.

Affiliate Staff

Michele Toomay Douglas, Ph.D.

Bioarchaeologist

Since 1983 Kell has worked in the field of human skeletal biology in Southeast Asia and the Pacific Islands. Her primary interests are paleopathology and bioarchaeology.

She has experience in single burial analysis, cemetery populations, and large scale investigations of population data, including paleodemography and biodistance studies.

Judith R. McNeill, M.A.

Archaeologist

Judy has over 40 years of active research experience in the Pacific Region, and has served as Project Director and/or GIS Specialist for over 15 projects in Japan and one in Korea. She is a GIS Specialist and her other specialties include faunal analysis and drafting.

M.J. Tomonari-Tuggle, M.A.

Archaeologist

Myra has over 40 years of experience in Hawaiian archaeology and history, and has directed a variety of field projects in Hawai‘i and the Western Pacific. Her professional focus is on historical research, cultural resource management, and interpretive planning. She has prepared management plans and interpretive projects for government, military, and private entities in Hawai‘i, Guam, Tinian, Yap, Korea, Okinawa, and Japan.

H. David Tuggle, Ph.D

Archaeologist

Dave has conducted archaeological research in Pacific islands and the Southwestern U.S. for 56 years.

David J. Welch, Ph.D.

Archaeologist

David has over 40 years of archaeological research experience, and has been Principal Investigator and Manager for over 180 projects in the Pacific, including projects in the Hawaiian Islands, Guam, Tinian, Palau, and Kosrae. In the past 13 years, he has managed and directed 16 projects in Japan and one in Korea on U.S. military lands. His skills include preparation of research designs, field mapping and excavation, analysis of soils and sediments, ceramic analysis, and settlement pattern analysis.

Professional Staff

Dawn Apilando

Senior Administrative Assistant

Dawn assists the Business Office in all areas as needed. This includes managing IARII’s rental properties and coordinating crew travel arrangements.

Lux Beltran

Guam Maintenance Specialist & Administrative Assistant

Lux has over 24 years of work experience and has served in various administrative and management roles. After retiring from the US Army, he enjoyed a short work break to spend more time with his family. He joined the Guam Business Office to provide administrative support and maintenance of its assets. He easily adapts to the ever-changing demands of both the office and field personnel to ensure they are able to perform their work.

Susan M. Goss

Assistant Office Manager

Sue assists the Business Office in all financial matters. She also coordinates staff schedules, crew housing, transportation, and travel arrangements.

Laura McWhorter, M.A.

Senior Editor

Laura has over four years of copyediting experience and assists with other administrative tasks on an as-needed basis. She also manages IA’s annual submission of qualifications to a range of state and county agencies.

Alejandro Meza

Maintenance Specialist

Alejandro served in the US Navy for 11 years, training as a Mess Management Specialist. He cross trained in 3M Maintenance Program & Supply Specialist.  After leaving the service, he worked for Love’s Bakery Engineering Department  for 20 years. As a Parts Supervisor, he gained knowledge in Industrial Maintenance & Bakery Equipment in Mechanical and Electrical Equipment. He enjoys the outdoors and camping at various locations on and around the neighbor islands. He also volunteers as a Scout Leader with Aloha Council BSA.

Cheryl Ann Moses, B.S.B.

Project Manager Assistant

Cheryl provides support to the company’s Project Managers and Principal Investigators over various stages of a project from inception to completion. With a strong background in finance and business management, Cheryl has a track record of being an essential part of the management team and instrumental in providing effective solutions that produce immediate impact and contribute to the establishment’s long-term success. In her free time, Cheryl volunteers at a local non-profit that supports families in need of affordable housing. She is also a member of the Ka’ahumanu Society, a civic club that promotes Hawaiian culture, cares for the elderly, and represents the Hawaiian monarchy at special events.

Heidi Sato, A.S.

Administrative Assistant

Heidi has a background in Architecture/Engineering and Property Management.  She enjoys gardening, crafting, cooking/baking, watching K-dramas, listening to K-pop, watching romantic comedy movies, volunteering at school and various organizations, and rooting for the Seattle Seahawks and Mariners, and is a golf widow hanging out at the 19th hole.