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April 8, 2013

April 8, 2013

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Contact: Amanda Shell
Moxley Carmichael
(865) 255-0661


Some lucky anthropologists will take home a replica of a prehistoric hominid while others discuss development of the human race at the Knoxville Convention Center this week.

More than 1,000 of the nation’s top anthropologists will discuss our species at the 82nd annual meeting of the American Association of Physical Anthropologists (AAPA) hosted by the University of Tennessee’s Department of Anthropology on Tuesday, April 9, through Saturday, April 13.

Highlights of the conference include a luncheon with forensic anthropologist Dr. William Bass about the exhumation of a rock and roll legend and an auction of the reconstructed skeleton of an early hominid.

“The University of Tennessee has a widely-respected, talented anthropology department, and we are so glad that UT and Dr. Andrew Kramer helped bring this great group to Knoxville once again,” said Mary Bogert, general manager at the Knoxville Convention Center. “The AAPA last held its annual meeting in Knoxville in 1985. Scientific conferences have become a great market for us here in Knoxville because of the great resources we have in this community through the university, Oak Ridge and other local organizations.”

AAPA will meet in conjunction with three other anthropological associations, the Paleopathology Association (PPA), the Human Biology Association (HBA) and the American Association of Anthropological Genetics (AAAG).

On Thursday night, a full standing skeletal reconstruction of a nearly two-million-year-old hominid fossil (Australopithecus sediba) will be auctioned off at 6 p.m. during an educational session and reception with refreshments and live music.

On Friday at 11:30 a.m., Dr. William Bass, UT professor emeritus, forensic anthropologist and crime novelist, will speak at a sold-out luncheon about his role in investigating the death of rock and roll legend J.P. “The Big Bopper” Richardson. Bass exhumed the body of the musician in 2007, nearly 50 years after the plane crash that also claimed the lives of Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, and the pilot, Roger Peterson, and inspired the song “American Pie.”

Seminars, job interviews, networking events and presentations of scholarly papers will be held during the week in conference rooms throughout the Knoxville Convention Center.

About the Knoxville Convention Center

The Knoxville Convention Center, managed by SMG, is located in downtown Knoxville adjacent to the Sunsphere. It boasts a 120,000 square-foot exhibit hall, a 27,000 square-foot divisible ballroom and up to 25 meeting rooms. For more information, visit