M. Kathryn Brown, Ph.D.
The Lutcher Brown Professorship
The Lutcher Brown Professorship was established in 2016 with funds from the Lutcher Brown Endowment for Academic Excellence. This professorship is one of several Lutcher Brown endowed faculty positions at UTSA.

M. Kathryn Brown, Ph.D.

The Lutcher Brown Professorship

Professor, Anthropology

M. Kathryn Brown is a renowned Maya scholar whose principal research focus is on the origins of complex societies. Her primary case study and focus of fieldwork is on the Maya of Central America, specifically in the Belize River Valley and Northern Belize.  

To support her research and provide research and educational opportunities for UTSA students, Brown and Jason Yaeger take a group of students to Belize each summer Each summer, where they spend a month in central Belize exploring Mayan civilization and excavating ancient ruins. This work has led to significant discoveries that help us better understand the lives and political history of Maya civilization. This UTSA Belize Archaeological Field School, which has set up operations at the Maya sites of XunantunichBuenavista del Cayo, Las Ruinas del ArenalCallar Creek, and San Lorenzo, has helped UTSA recruit exceptional graduate students and faculty scholars in this area. 

Brown also has a strong interest in Texas archaeology and has directed more than a dozen seasons of fieldwork on Texas historic and prehistoric sites to help scholars better understand prehistoric mobility patterns and the establishment of pioneer settlements in Texas. 

Her significant and prolific scholarly contributions earned her the 2019 UTSA President’s Distinguished Achievement Award for Research Achievement. 

In addition to her research prowess, Brown has been recognized many times over for her teaching excellence. In 2014, she received the UTSA President’s Distinguished Achievement Award for Excellence in Teaching. In 2015, she earned a prestigious UT System Regents’ Outstanding Teaching Award, which is considered one of the nation’s most competitive awards for undergraduate instruction. In 2020, she was recipient of the Archaeological Institute of America's Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching Award, which is the top prize for teaching excellence in archaeology at the national level. 

“I strive to make the course subject both interesting and relevant to everyday problems and issues. This may seem like a difficult task for an archaeologist, but much of what I teach is relevant to modern society. I teach students about the successes and failures of past societies and how we can learn from these examples and apply this knowledge to better our lives today. Learning about the past provides a mirror for self-reflection for today and allows us to better understand the cultural tensions in the modern world, Brown said. 

As a member of UTSA’s Academy of Distinguished Teaching Scholars, Brown regularly supports her fellow faculty by sharing best teaching practices by participating in ADTS Shared Experience Forums. 

Brown earned her bachelor’s in anthropology from Southwest Texas State University (now Texas State University), a master’s from UTSA and another master’s and Ph.D. from Southern Methodist University.