Director of Museum Science & Management, Senior Curator at Gilcrease Museum
Scholar, teacher, forensic anthropologist, archaeologist and children’s book author—those titles don’t begin to sum up the many roles Dr. Pickering has taken on during his more than 20 years in anthropology.
“I’ve really enjoyed a museum career. It has allowed me to pursue many interests, to be a generalist, rather than being confined to a narrow niche,” said Pickering, senior curator at Gilcrease Museum and director of the museum science and management program at The University of Tulsa.
TU and Gilcrease Museum began a historic partnership in 2008 where the institutions use their core strengths to advance the educational goals of each institution. The museum science and management program makes full use of the TU-Gilcrease partnership and emphasizes versatility in managing the many aspects of a museum.
Pickering has conducted archaeological and physical anthropological research in the United States and Mexico. Additionally, he has served as a forensic anthropology consultant to numerous medical examiners and coroners around the country. He has received numerous recognitions for his work, including a Service Award by the Institute of Forensic Medicine in Bangkok, Thailand.
His professional career has included curatorial and education responsibilities in major American museums: the Field Museum of Natural History, The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis, Denver Museum of Nature and Science, and the Buffalo Bill Historical Center. His record is one of continuing research, commitment to public education, success in grant writing and expanded administrative responsibilities.
In 1997, Pickering was presented with the Distinguished Patron Award by the Native American Resource Group of the Denver Museum of Natural History. He served as curator of the “Ancient Mummies” exhibit at Denver Museum of Natural History and won the 1998 Silver Peak Award from the Denver Chapter of the International Television Association for the documentary film, “Mummies.” In 1999, the exhibit won the American Association of Museums’ (AAM) 11th annual exhibit competition in the “exhibit budget under $50,000.00 category.”
Dr. Pickering has authored or co-authored five books, edited three books and two series of non-fiction anthropology books for juvenile audiences, and has written nearly 50 peer-reviewed and popular articles.
Current research interests include the study of bison/human interaction and the continuation of the development of non-destructive techniques for determining authenticity of ancient West Mexican ceramic figurines.