David Meltzer joined the SMU Department of Anthropology as an assistant professor in the summer of 1984. He is now the Henderson-Morrison Professor of Prehistory and the executive director of the Quest Archaeological Research Program. In addition, Meltzer holds an extramural appointment as affiliate professor in prehistory, climate and environment at the Centre for GeoGenetics, Natural History Museum, University of Copenhagen, Denmark.
His research centers on the origins, antiquity and adaptations of the first Americans (Paleoindians), who colonized the North American continent at the end of the Pleistocene (ice age). He explores all that, and more, in his latest book, a new edition of First Peoples in a New World(2021). He is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (elected 1998) and a member of the National Academy of Sciences (2009), Texas Academy of Medicine, Engineering, Science and Technology (2009) and American Academy of Arts and Sciences (2013).