Kathleen O’Neal Gear (Religious Studies, 1977)
Kathleen is a best-selling author and award-winning archaeologist who has authored 10 novels herself and co-authored another 37 with her husband, W. Michael Gear. Their “People Books” series of historical novels imagine the lives of the First North Americans in the American West. Kathleen also worked for the United States Department of the Interior as the Wyoming State Historian, and later as the Archaeologist for Wyoming, Kansas and Nebraska. She has twice been the recipient of the federal government's "Special Achievement Award" for outstanding management of our nation's cultural heritage. She and Michael currently operate an anthropological research company called Wind River Archaeological Consultants.
Kathleen received her B.A. in Religious Studies from California State University in Bakersfield, and her M.A., summa cum laude, from California State University in Chico. She conducted Ph.D. studies at the University of California in Los Angeles and did post-graduate studies at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in Israel. Kathleen was inducted into the CSUB Alumni Hall of Fame in 2015. She and Michael live on a buffalo ranch in the Owl Creek Mountains of northern Wyoming.