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Anthropology Subcommittee

Members of the OSAC Anthropology Subcommittee
Members of the OSAC Anthropology Subcommittee (July 2019)

The Anthropology Subcommittee focuses on standards and guidelines related to application of anthropological methods and theory, particularly those relating to the recovery and analysis of human remains.

Officers | Members | OSAC Registry Approved Documents | Documents In Process | Research & Development Needs | Discipline-Specific Baseline Documents | Presentations


Thomas Holland, Ph.D., Subcommittee Chair, U.S. Department of Defense Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command

Diane France, Ph.D., Subcommittee Vice Chair, Human Identification Laboratory of Colorado

Todd Fenton, Ph.D., Subcommittee Executive Secretary, Michigan State University


Donna Catherine Boyd, Ph.D., Radford University

Sharon Derrick, Ph.D., Harris County Institute of Forensic Sciences

Paul Emanovsky, Ph.D., DoD JPAC-CIL

Kristen Hartnett, Ph.D., Office of Chief Medical Examiner, New York City

Joseph Hefner, Ph.D., Michigan State University

Jennifer Love, Ph.D., Office Chief Medical Examiner, Washington D.C.

Wendy McQuade, Ph.D., UNT Health Science Center, Center for Human Identification

Nicholas Passalacqua, Ph.D., U.S. Department of Defense Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command

Vincent Sava, U.S. Department of Defense Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command

Richard Thomas, Ph.D., U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation

OSAC Registry Approved Documents 

  • None currently.

Documents in Process

Under Development:

  • Standard for Identifying and Describing Pathological Conditions and Anomalies in Forensic Anthropology.

Work Product Sent to SDO:

  • ASB Best Practice Recommendation 089, Facial Approximation in Forensic Anthropology.
  • ASB 132, Standard for Ancestry Estimation in Forensic Anthropology.
  • ASB 133, Standard for Age Estimation in Forensic Anthropology.
  • ASB 135, Best Practice Recommendations for Anthropology Scene Detection and Processing.
  • Standard for Stature Estimation from Human Remains (ASB).

SDO Published:

Entered OSAC Registry Approval Process: 

  • None currently.

Research & Development Needs

  • See the Research & Development Needs identified by the Anthropology subcommittee.

Discipline-Specific Baseline Documents

The Forensic Science Standards Board (FSSB) has provided the opportunity for OSAC Subcommittees to identify baseline documents and reference materials that best reflect the current state of the practice within their respective disciplines. 

These documents contain practical information regarding these disciplines that can help forensic scientists, judges, lawyers, researchers, other interested parties and the general public, to better understand the nature, scope, and foundations of the individual disciplines as they are currently practiced.

It is important to note that the identification of these documents in this venue does not represent an endorsement by OSAC or NIST.  Only documents that are posted on the OSAC Registries constitute OSAC endorsement. All copyrights for these documents are reserved by their owners. Subcommittee position statements or responses to data collections by the subcommittee represent the consensus opinion of the subcommittee, not necessarily the position of the entire OSAC organization or NIST.

* The documents below originated from the former FBI/DoD sponsored SWGANTH working group. The website as of November 13, 2018 is not affiliated with the former FBI/DoD sponsored group of the same name.

SWGANTH Age Estimation

SWGANTH Ancestry Assessment


SWGANTH Code of Ethics and Conduct

SWGANTH Determination of Medicolegal Significance

SWGANTH Documentation, Reporting and Testimony

SWGANTH Education and Training

SWGANTH Facial Approximation

SWGANTH Identifying and Describing Pathological Conditions

SWGANTH Laboratory Management and Quality Assurance

SWGANTH Personal Identification

SWGANTH Proficiency Testing

SWGANTH Qualifications

SWGANTH Resolving Commingled Human Remains

SWGANTH Scene Detection and Processing

SWGANTH Sex Assessment

SWGANTH Skeletal Sampling and Preparation

SWGANTH Statistical Methods

SWGANTH Stature Estimation

SWGANTH Taphonomic Observations



  • None at this time.

In general, the development of standards and guidelines is transitioning from the Scientific Working Groups (SWGs) to the OSAC. Some SWGs will continue to operate to provide other resources within their discipline. The existing SWG documents will remain in effect until updated documents are disseminated by the OSAC or the SWG. SWGDAM will retain the responsibility for updating the FBI DNA Quality Assurance Standards.

– Forensic Science Standards Board: March 2015

Created July 9, 2014, Updated January 7, 2020