Dr. Mark Alan Wright was born and raised in Long Beach, California. He earned his BA in Anthropology from UCLA and received his MA and PhD degrees in Anthropology from UC Riverside, all with an emphasis on Mesoamerican Archaeology. He regularly conducts fieldwork in Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, and Belize. His research interests include Classic period Maya ritual and religion, Mesoamerican writing systems, and the historicity of the Book of Mormon. Dr. Wright has been teaching in the Ancient Scripture department at Brigham Young University since 2007. He has spoken at academic conferences at Oxford, Harvard, Yale, Duke, UCLA, and many other institutions. He is on the board of trustees at the Book of Mormon Archaeological Forum. His published articles include “The Cultural Context of Nephite Apostasy” (in Interpreter: A Journal of Mormon Scripture, 2012) and “According to Their Language, Unto their Understanding: Hierophanies and Theophanies in LDS Canon” (in Studies in the Bible and Antiquity, 2011). He is married to the former Traci Turner, who is currently an adjunct professor of History at Utah Valley University. Mark and Traci just welcomed their first child – a perfect little girl named Annika – in April of 2013.