NAPA Presents: Disciplinary Standards for Professional, Practicing, and Applied Anthropologists

  • 28 Feb 2024
  • 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM
  • Online via Zoom (must register to receive log in information)


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IMPORTANT INFORMATION: This talk will be presented online using Zoom. Registration is required before 3:00 pm on Wednesday, February 28, 2024. Log in information for Zoom will be emailed to those who have registered with their registration confirmation.

YouTube Link: https://youtu.be/zX3snOl5mQo

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The session will be recorded and posted to WAPA's YouTube channel within a few days of the event. 

Date: Wednesday, 28 February 2024 

Location:  Online meeting via Zoom

Time: 7:00 pm EST/4:00 pm PST

The National Association for the Practice of Anthropology (NAPA) Presents: Disciplinary Standards for Professional, Practicing, and Applied Anthropologists


Cathleen Crain, LTG Associates, Inc

Erica Hawvermale, Syracuse University’s D’aniello Institute for Veterans and Military Families

Niel Tashima, LTG Associates, Inc

Riall Nolan, Purdue University

Tanya Rodriguez, Hormel Foods Corporation

Matt Stoffer, Booz Allen Hamilton

About the panel:

Professional, practicing, and applied (PPA) anthropologists represent the rising majority of the discipline. Increasingly, new, young, and transitioning anthropologists are looking beyond the academic world to the development of careers in the government, nonprofit, and private sectors.

For the discipline of anthropology, this movement presents several critical challenges. The first is the quality preparation of new/young anthropologists for working effectively and successfully in the world. The second is supporting those PPA anthropologists who were not prepared but have struck out into the world; for all, ongoing professional development and support is essential.

Good skills training is one important aspect of preparing PPA anthropologists for working in the world. Another, and fundamental issue to be addressed in this growing world of PPA anthropology, is of providing informed standards for professional work.

Frequently, PPA anthropologists do not have peer anthropology groups with which they engage. This often means that individuals are functioning alone in professional settings, using the skills gained in their academic training, to address issues and contexts not foreseen in their preparation. Clearly, this creates a variety of potential perils even as individuals encounter important opportunities for using the skills and tools of anthropology. Critically, they lack a clear set of professional standards to guide their work.

The National Association for the Practice of Anthropology (NAPA), the professional and practicing arm of the American Anthropological Association, has undertaken the development of professional standards. The standards are intended to both guide individuals and to encourage the engagement of PPA anthropologists in ongoing training as well as to stimulate PPA discussions of professional work and practice.

Join us for a presentation and discussion of NAPA’s new Standards for Professional Anthropology. NAPA's Professional Development Committee has developed these guidelines to reflect the work of PPA's across many sectors and industries. Hear from panelists including Cathleen Crain, Erica Hawvermale, Niel Tashima, Riall Nolan, Tanya Rodriguez, and Matthew Stoffer. This webinar will introduce the Professional Standards and welcome Q&A during a 90-minute presentation.

About the Panelists:

Cathleen Crain, M.A. is a Managing Partner of LTG Associates, the oldest anthropologically based consulting firm in the U.S. and a senior professional anthropologist. She has more than forty years of experience in health and human services research, program development, evaluation, policy analysis, and technical assistance. Cathleen has been engaged in scores of projects for international, federal, state, and local governmental organizations, and with for- and non-profit organizations and foundations. In addition to being an active social scientist working on projects, Cathleen is responsible for the development side of the firm. Cathleen is the immediate past president of the National Association for the Practice of Anthropology (NAPA), a past member of the SfAA Nominations and Elections Committee, a past chair of the NAPA committee responsible for the Careers Expo, a founder of the NAPA mentor program, a long-standing and proud member of WAPA, and a current member of the WAPA program committee.

Erica Hawvermale (she/her) is an Evaluation Associate at Syracuse University’s D’aniello Institute for Veterans and Military Families (IVMF). There, she works one-on-one with clients to provide high-quality evaluations of their programs and services.  As a military child who experienced multiple deployments and permanent changes of station, she has a strong commitment to helping organizations better understand how to serve the military community. She also holds a master’s degree in Applied Anthropology with a Geographic Information Systems Graduate Certificate from the University of North Texas (’20).

Dr. Nathaniel (Niel) Tashima is one of the two founding and Managing Partners of LTG Associates, Inc., the oldest anthropologically based consulting firm in North America. For four decades, he has led projects that have helped to shape policy and services that affect the health and welfare of minority and at-risk communities. Clients have ranged from community-based organizations and foundations, to local, state, federal, and international agencies. In addition to being an active social scientist, Niel is responsible for oversight of the administrative functioning of the firm. Niel is a past president of the National Association for the Practice of Anthropology (NAPA), a past member of the American Anthropological Association (AAA) Executive Board, and a current member of the Board of the Society for Applied Anthropology (SfAA). He is a long-standing member of WAPA. He chairs the NAPA Mentor program which matches new/young professionals with seasoned professional anthropologists. He co-chairs the NAPA committee responsible for the annual Careers Expo.

Riall Nolan is an emeritus professor of anthropology at Purdue University. A scholar of international development, cross-cultural adaptation, and applied anthropology, he has conducted research on issues of change and development widely. His work as a researcher and project specialist has included community led development initiatives with national and international agencies, and numerous university and local nongovernmental organization (NGO) partners.

Tanya Rodriguez is a cultural anthropologist with Hormel Foods Corporation’s multidimensional Brand Fuel team. She uses cultural intelligence to drive insights and innovation, showcase diverse consumer voices and solve human problems. An advocate for food equity and sovereignty, Tanya champions efforts to ensure access to high quality, nutritionally dense and culturally relevant food for all. As a South Texas native, she is passionate about her ownTex-Mex culinary diaspora. She holds a B.A. in anthropology and sociology from the University of Notre Dame, an M.S.W. from Our Lady of the Lake University, and a doctorate in cultural anthropology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Matt Stoffer received his M.A. in Socio-Cultural Anthropology, with a focus in medical anthropology, from the SUNY University at Buffalo in June 2014. Mr. Stoffer is a mid-career professional with experience in the banking and government contracting sectors, working primarily in threat and vulnerability analysis, with emphasis on financial, cyber, and biological threats, in the national security field. Combining a diverse skill set, Mr. Stoffer aims to promote a practical, everyday anthropology by providing innovative, anthropologically-driven solutions to challenges in private and public industry.

(c) 2024 Washington Association of Professional Anthropologists
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