Quick Bio

I’ve been a university professor, dog walker, ditch digger, photographer, Search and Rescue canine unit, social justice activist, video game writer, felony one investigator, and few more things in between.  I have a Ph.D. in anthropology and can wield a machete, have killed poisonous snakes, know how to make a mean betlenut chew, and have bathed in chicken blood before getting a forehead hickey from a West African shaman.

I’m a dual US/Irish citizen.  I’ve driven across the US four times, hiked most national parks in the South West, and lived briefly in Grand Gulch, Utah where I spent my days sketching Anasazi petroglyphs.  I’ve lived in Belize on and off for nine years, much of that time in a tent with no electricity or running water.  While there, I excavated ancient Maya temples and sought lost ruins in the jungle.

I’ve traveled across Senegal studying drum ceremonies.  Lived among the mangroves of Micronesia where I helped village elders document their history.  Lived in London where I spent my time in stuffy archives reading about the wars of the Yucatan.

I’ve eaten sushi in the fish market of Tokyo, mole in Merida, curry in Bangkok, taro in Yap, thiéboudienne in Senegal, goulash in Budapest, baguettes in Paris, and, sadly, I have also eaten in London.

Now I am incredibly happy to be home with my kick ass family in the Bay Area where I spend my time trying to write cool stuff when I’m not playing with my kid.

4 thoughts on “Quick Bio

  1. Wandering on the web has brought me here… maybe you are on to something about the existence of God! Thought I’d leave a hello, you drift across my mind every now and then and I wonder what you are up to. And I see here you are writing (very cool)… are you still teaching? And living in Austin? I almost signed up for the Society for Anthropology in Community Colleges meeting this April in Austin just to come look you up.

    Drop me a line if you get a chance, it would be great to reconnect! My email is nkilburn@shaw.ca. Nicky

  2. And if I had read to the bottom of your bio I would see you now live in CA…. Obviously lots to catch up on. I can also provide corroborating evidence about your machete skills and ability to fell deadly snakes!

  3. Dr. Dornan-Fish!

    First of all, I would like to say that I love your blog that you’ve got going on here. Very cool. It is always great to see professors, friends, humans, etc. from your past are doing well. I am a previous student of yours and your class and teaching style changed the way that I look at teaching. I am teaching theatre and play translation in Chicago, IL now, and I am working on a performing arts project with middle school girls from across Chicagoland about womanhood. Anyways, my partner and I are in the process of research and grant writing for said project, and I remembered so many amazing articles and things that you brought up in your class about women and the importance of the education of women. I would love to able to pick your brain about said research, as well as discuss my project with you to see what you might think.
    Please email me if you get a chance! I would love to be able to use you and your repertoire as a resource.


    Meredith Montgomery
    (St. Edward’s University, Class of 2012.)

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