JoAllyn Archambault was born to a Sioux father and Creek mother. She was raised in Sioux traditions and is a member of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe of North and South Dakota. Dr. Archambault has made a great contribution to anthropology by providing an insider's perspective to her research on Native American people. Dr. Archambault earned a B.A., an M.A., and a Ph.D. in Anthropology from the University of California, Berkeley. She focused her doctorate on the Gallup ceremonial, an annual event held in New Mexico to display the Native American arts of that area of the country.
Dr. Archambault is the Director of the American Indian Program of the National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution. She has taught classes in Native American studies at numerous colleges and universities including Pine Ridge Tribal College, Pine Ridge Reservation, South Dakota, the University of California, Berkeley, the University of New Mexico, and Johns Hopkins University. Dr. Archambault was a Professor at the University of Wisconsin in the Department of Anthropology and as the Director of Ethnic studies at the California College of Arts and Crafts in Oakland, California. She works to preserve and promote Native American art, culture, and political anthropology, acts as an ethnic liaison, supervises Native American fellowship interns, and manages an annual program budget. Dr. Archambault is a member and past officer of the American Association of Anthropology.
Dr. Archambault is known amongst American Indians everywhere as a supportive, informative pillar of the community. She has helped cement the Native American legacy in these times.
St. Mary’s College of Maryland student Victoria Danner (left) with her internship mentor Dr. JoAllyn Archambault, who is director of the North American Indian Program at the Smithsonian.