Elena Hughes is currently a PhD student in Anthropology at the University of Hawaiʻi Mānoa. She received her MA in Forensic Anthropology in 2018 from the University of Montana and her BS in Anthropology from Central Washington University in 2014. While getting her master’s degree she participated in a field methods course for the recovery of human remains at the University of Tennessee Knoxville’s Forensic Anthropology Research Center as well as assisted in the analysis of forensic remains in both open and cold cases from the Montana State Crime Lab. It was through this forensic casework that she became interested in postmortem alterations and tool mark analysis in bone which would later become the focus of both her master’s and doctoral research. Her current research analyzes the variations in the creation and preservation of saw marks in bone when exposed to differing depositional environments. She anticipates that this data will help to determine a more accurate timeline of postmortem trauma resulting from acts of dismemberment. Her interests include biological anthropology, forensic anthropology, human osteology, skeletal trauma, and taphonomy.
Ashley Atkins is currently a PhD student in Anthropology at the University of Hawai’i at Manoa. She has a MSc in Forensic Anthropology from Liverpool John Moores University (2016) and BA in Anthropology from Lee University (2015). As an undergraduate student she studied abroad in Japan, focusing on Japanese culture, and participated in archaeological fieldwork in Tennessee and osteological training at the University of Tennessee Anthropological Research Facility. During her MSc she excavated a medieval cemetery in England, worked with the forensic experts of the Carabinieri in Italy, and completed her thesis research with the skeletal collections housed at the Museum of London. Her dissertation focuses on the origin of modern Japanese using Neolithic skeletal remains. Her interests are biological anthropology, human origins and migration, human variation, paleopathology, and forensic anthropology.