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With a PhD in ancient history from McMaster University, Canada, I came to UTA and became an Assistant professor (1984-89), Assistant chair (1987- 94), Associate professor (1989-98), Department chair (1999-2006), and Full Professor (1998-present).
My teaching honors include the Chancellor's Council Award for Excellence in Teaching at UTA (1990), and membership in the UTA Academy of Distinguished Teachers (1999). I also was twice an invited teaching professor at the International Olympic Academy in Greece.
My strong publication record includes books such as Athletics in Ancient Athens, and Spectacles of Death in Ancient Rome. My award-winning Sport and Spectacle in the Ancient World of 2007 appeared in a second edition in 2015. I also have co-edited volumes including Sport History and Sport Mythology and a Companion to Ancient Sport and Spectacle(2014). I also have written numerous articles and book chapters on topics from Greek athletic prizes to Roman beast spectacles.
As an internationally recognized expert on ancient sport and spectacles, I have delivered numerous invited lectures, e.g. at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts, the Hood Museum at Dartmouth, the University of New Hampshire, the University of Kentucky, the Nicholson Museum in Sydney, Australia, and at Karl-Franzens Universität, Graz, Austria. I also have often been interviewed by the media (e.g. New York Times, Washington Post, BBC Radio), and I have consulted on and appeared in History Channel shows on Roman gladiators and on the Ancient Olympics. I also have served on the editorial boards of three journals of sport history.