Lana Martin, Ph.D.

Program + Project Manager | Lecturer | Consultant | Picture-Taker | Wild Plant Enthusiast

Nonprofit Administration

Grant and contract management, compliance reviews, cultural competence assessments, process improvements, case management

Science Communication

Lay-friendly translations, multidiscplinary reconciliations, public engagements, training curricula, abstract and statistical visualizations

Research & Evaluation

Qualitative analyses, summary and correlation statistics, survey design, data management and interpretations, clear and transparent reporting


Professional Roles

2022 onward – Grants & Contracts Manager, Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles
2015 onward – Lecturer, UCLA Anthropology
2015 onward – Lecturer, Santa Monica College Earth Sciences
2020 to 2022 – Grants Associate, Community Partners
2019 to 2020 – Project Manager, USC School of Pharmacy
2018 to 2019 – Programs Manager, UCLA Molecular Biology Institute
2018 – Senior Policy Analyst, UCLA Graduate Division
2016 to 2018 – Project Manager, UCLA Computational Genomics Lab
2015 to 2016 – Writing Consultant, Prostate Cancer Foundation
2008 to 2015 – Research and Teaching Associate, UCLA Anthropology
2007 to 2008 – Field and Lab Technician, SWCA Environmental Consultants


Re: Democratizing access to STEM training.

Programs scaled up and out:
– UCLA BIG Summer
– UCLA Collaboratory
– UCLA Bioinformatics Minor

2017: Addressing the Digital Divide in Contemporary Biology: Lessons from Teaching UNIX. Trends in Biotechnology 35, 901–903: 10.1016/j.tibtech.2017.06.007.

2018: Involving undergraduates in genomics research to narrow the education–research gap. Nature Biotechnology 36, 369–371: 10.1038/nbt.4113.

2019: How bioinformatics and open data can boost basic science in countries and universities with limited resources. Nature Biotechnology 37, 324–326: 10.1038/s41587-019-0053-y.


Re: Elevating Multidisciplinary Research.

Projects supported and streamlined:
– USC Clinical Pharmacy Metagenomics
– UCLA Computational Genomics

2019: Improving the usability and archival stability of bioinformatics software. Genome Biology 20, 47: 10.1186/s13059-019-1649-8.

2019: Challenges and recommendations to improve the installability and archival stability of omics computational tools. PLOS Biology 17, e3000333: 10.1371/journal.pbio.3000333.

2020: Improving the usability and comprehensiveness of microbial databases. BMC Biology 18, 37: 10.1186/s12915-020-0756-z.


Re: the Intensification of Ancient Agriculture.

2014: The Neolithic Demographic Transition in Mesoamerica. Current Anthropology 55, 654–664: 10.1086/678325.

2015: Forests, Gardens, and Fisheries in an Ancient Chiefdom: Paleoethnobotany and Zooarchaeology at Sitio Drago, Bocas del Toro, Panama. PhD Dissertation, UCLA: 5gj2w070.

2021: Sitio Drago, isla Colón, Bocas del Toro: una aldea y centro de intercambio en el Caribe panameño. in Mucho más que un puente terrestre: Avances de la arqueología en Panamá 69–143 SENACYT.


Re: What people ate Way Back When, Americas Edition.

2014: Botanical Evidence of Paleodietary and Environmental Change: Drought on the Channel Islands, California. American Antiquity 79, 227–248: 10.7183/0002-7316.79.2.227.

2016: New World Paleoethnobotany in the New Millennium (2000–2013). Journal of Archaeological Research 24, 125–177: 10.1007/s10814-015-9089-9.

Courses Developed & Taught

Archaeology of Los Angeles
Broad exploration of the origin, development, and demographic transformation of human occupation in the Los Angeles region from 11,000 years ago to present. Students use mixed methods to examine case studies of past and present social, political, economic, cultural, and environmental issues surrounding, among other places, La Brea Tar Pits, Gabrielino-Tongva and coastal Chumash villages, El Pueblo de Los Ángeles, and Chinatown. Thematic emphasis on pre/historic developments that shape modern urban, suburban, and rural life.

Archaeology: Introduction
Historic survey of the people, events, and contexts that shaped modern anthropological archaeology: including field and laboratory methods, theoretical perspectives, and major findings. Students apply concepts to compare societies from different socioeconomic scales, geographical regions, and time periods. Thematic emphasis on (1) history of science as a path to understanding our own perspectives and biases; and (2) the astonishing diversity of human social organization.

Principles of Archaeology
Comprehensive investigation of archaeological method and theory in order to understand what archaeologists do, and how and why they do it. Students work hands-on with field strategies, formation processes, chronological frameworks, statistical analyses, and other crucial principles of archaeological analysis and interpretation. Thematic emphasis on material culture as a multi-scalar reflection of our collective activities, behaviors, and attitudes.