Meet Our Board & Staff

Our team is dedicated to instilling understanding and respect for the indigenous cultures of the southwest.

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Board of Trustees
Eric Costanios, Cliff Hill, Ron Robinson, Bryan Crossley, Irene Stonecipher, Barb Karkula, Toney Largo, Patti Ezell

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Manuel Lucero IV, Cindy Gresser, Andy Christenson, Julie Rucker, Linda Wolgamott

Board of Trustees

Barb Karkula
Citizen Potawatomi Nation

Ron Robinson
Vice President

Irene Stonecipher

Bryan Crossley

Eric Costanios
Pacific Islander

Patti Ezell

Cliff Hill

Barb Karkula - Vice President, Board of
Ron Robinson - Presdient, Board of Trust
Irene Stonecipher -  Secretary, Board of
Bryan Crossley - Board of Trustees.jpg
Eric Costanios - Board of Trustees.jpg
Patti Ezell -  Treasurer, Board of Trust
Cliff Hill - Board of Trustees.jpg
Meet the Staff 
Cindy Gresser - Executive Director.jpg
Executive Director 
Museum of Indigenous People

Cindy Gresser serves as the Executive Director of the Museum of Indigenous People and has since April 2009.  She has been involved with the Museum since 2002, formerly serving as President of the Board of Trustees for three years (2004-2007).  She was also the President of Prescott Area Arts and Humanities Council, is a Past Sheriff of the Prescott Corral of the Westerners, serves on the Tourism Advisory Committee for the City of Prescott and is President of the Rotary Club of Prescott.  Most recently she became the Chair of the Arts in Public Places Committee for the

City of Prescott.  In her previous career, Cindy Gresser was an Arizona licensed General Contractor.  Her building specialty also was constructing homes “off the grid”Contractor.  Her building specialty also was constructing homes “off the grid” utilizing solar technology in her company, High Country Homes and Cabins.  

Manuel Lucero - Assistant Director.jpg
Assistant Director of the
Museum of Indigenous People

Manuel has lived and worked in the Prescott area for 6 years.  He is currently the Assistant Director of The Museum of Indigenous People. Manuel was born in California and moved to Prescott to facilitate his wife’s education. He chose Prescott over “The Valley” because it reminded him of Bakersfield, and he felt a sense of community—one that was safe for his children. Manuel is a Southern Straight dancer, like his father, brother, and his sons.  He is currently President of the Prescott Powwow Committee, and Vice President of the Granite Mountain Gourd Society.

Manuel believes in the Museum of Indigenous People's mission, and he believes it is never too late to make things right.

Julie Rucker - Administrative Manager MI
Administrative Manager of the
Museum of Indigenous People

Julie has been active at the museum since 2010, when she was studying for her Bachelor of Arts Degree in Archaeology at Prescott College. She began as a volunteer and completed several museum internships related to her studies at Northern Arizona University (Geographic Information Systems) and at the University of Oklahoma (Museum Studies). During that time, Julie was an assistant to Curator Andy Christenson, completing many projects in accession documentation, artifact preservation, exhibit design, grant-writing, and public education.

In 2016, she became the Volunteer Coordinator for the museum, and in 2017, shortly after earning her Museum Science Master’s Degree, she became the Administrative Manager. Her current administrative responsibilities concern daily operations management and include aspects of event, exhibit, and program planning and implementation, volunteer coordination and education, publications editing, and collaborating with the management team. As her managerial role has expanded, Julie continues to promote a positive environment to ensure that the volunteers are confident and happy in their work, while focusing on the advancement of The Museum of Indigenous People as a vibrant educational institution within the community.

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Curator of the
Museum of Indigenous People

Andy Christenson was trained as an anthropological archaeologist at UCLA and received his Ph. D. in 1981. During graduate school, he worked for the Illinois State Museum and was curator of archaeology at the UCLA Museum of Culture History. In the 1980s, he conducted stone tool analysis for the Black Mesa Archaeological Project at Southern Illinois University and was a visiting scholar at the Arizona State Museum. Since 1987, he has been an archaeological consultant working primarily in central Arizona and in 2012 became curator of the Smoki Museum of

American Indian Art & Culture. He is advisor to the Yavapai Chapter of the Arizona Archaeological Society and was recipient of the 2013 Professional Archaeologist of the Year from the AAS. He is one of the few American members of EXARC, the international organization of archaeological open-air museums and experimental archaeology. His research interests are in the prehistory of central Arizona, artifact analysis (stone tools and pottery), and the history of archaeology.

As museum curator, he is responsible for the 3600+ cataloged objects and collections as well as any items on loan to the museum. In addition, he evaluates donations to the museum, organizes an accession committee to evaluate those items, accessions those items deemed to be worthy of permanent acquisition, maintains the computer database that contains the accession records, and finds suitable storage places for the new items. He has been closely involved in preparation of exhibits at the museum, including one on the Rainbow Bridge-Monument Valley Expedition, one on the relationships of amateur and professional archaeologists in central Arizona, developed with an associated book, An Essential Relationship: Amateurs and Professionals in Central Arizona Archaeology, and one on the connections of northwestern Mexico and the southwestern U.S.

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Accountant for the
Museum of Indigenous People