Tuesday, November 9, 2010

To Todd!

This is my first blog contribution—not just to this blog, but to any blog. Even though it is my first, this is not going to be so much about me as it is about Dr. Todd Bostwick. Similarly, the name of this blog entry isn’t simply addressed to Todd so much as it is a toast to him. You see, as many of you may know, Dr. Bostwick is retiring after 21 years as City of Phoenix Archaeologist. This alone would certainly be an achievement for anyone, but it is all the things that Todd has accomplished during that time that has set him apart.


Any list of things about Todd would be incomplete in such a brief space, but I will do my best. First and foremost, Todd created the archaeology program in Phoenix as we know it today. Projects involving the City of Phoenix now routinely get assessed for archaeology. Prior to this, only a dozen or so projects were assessed each year. Now, several hundred projects are assessed each year. He also began the different publications series of Pueblo Grande Museum. The first of these were the volumes documenting all of the archaeological work done in and around the platform mound at Pueblo Grande, which up to that point had not been summarized. Todd chairs the annual Archaeoastronomy Conference and oversees production of its resulting reports. He has cultivated relationships with the various communities in and around Phoenix, especially Indian communities such as the Gila River Indian Community and the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community. Dr. Bostwick is also a history professor at Arizona State University and writes books on the history and prehistory of this area.

I sometimes think that on a good day, I wouldn’t have the time, energy, or the inclination to do half of the things that Todd does in a typical week—and I’m not even on the wrong side of 30 yet! But Todd has had the ability and the drive to do all this and more. I am impressed not only by what he has accomplished, but by the influence he has had on me. He has shown me the importance of standing one’s ground, of remaining unflappable in the most intense of meetings, and of showing respect for all our shared cultural heritage. Todd is going to be missed greatly by everyone in the City of Phoenix and other agencies for his competence, his good response times, and his approachability.


Even though he is not going to be the City Archaeologist any longer, he will still most definitely be around. You can still catch him at archaeological conferences, or at an Arizona Archaeological Society or a PGM Auxiliary meeting—I know I will. Todd is quick with information about archaeology or a fun and interesting story from one of his many travels. I hope if you see Todd, you’ll take a little bit of time to thank him. You can pick any number of the things listed above (again, I don’t think I could mention everything) or something you personally know. Regardless of what you choose, I think you will agree that Todd and his accomplishments are worth celebrating; that they are worth lifting a toast to. So, here’s to Todd!





Posted By April Carroll, Contract Associate Archaeologist - Archaeology Office

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