Graduate Theological Union

Elizabeth S. Peña

Director, Center for the Arts & Religion

At GTU since 2014

PhD, Boston University, 1990
MA, Boston University, 1987
BA, University of Michigan, 1983
Phone: 510/649-2471


Elizabeth S. Peña is an archaeologist, museum professional, and academic and arts administrator. She served as Director of the Art Conservation Department at Buffalo State College, Curator of Anthropology at the Buffalo Museum of Science, and Co-Director of Archaeology at Old Fort Niagara State Historic Site. She has taught numerous courses in museum studies and anthropology, most recently “Museums & Religion.” In addition to serving as Director of the Center for the Arts & Religion and the Doug Adams Gallery, Dr. Peña is involved in several museum consulting projects. 

Current Research and Teaching Interests

  • Material Culture
  • Museum Collections
  • Cultural Heritage

Selected Publications

  • “Leadership at all Levels,” in A Life in Museums: Managing Your Museum Career, eds. G. Stevens and W. Luke, 2012
  • “Wampum Diplomacy: The Historical and Archaeological Evidence for Wampum at Fort Niagara,” Northeast Historical Archaeology, 2007
  • “Desire and Distrust: The Paradox of Women at Old Fort Niagara,” New York History, 2004

Courses Taught

  • Museums and Religion
  • Museums and Social Justice
  • Museum Collections Management I and II
  • Graduate Seminar in Anthropology: Documents and Archaeology
  • Graduate Seminar in Anthropology: Material Culture