Lisa Cooper recognized by ASOR for work with Damascus Committee and Syrian people

Dr. Lisa Cooper received the W. F. Albright Award from ASOR at the November 2020 Annual Meeting. This award honors an individual who has shown special support or made outstanding service contributions to one of the overseas centers, ACOR, AIAR, CAARI, or to one of the overseas committees – the Baghdad Committee and the Damascus Committee. This award especially recognizes Lisa’s personal investment in the region or the world where she conducts research, having sponsored and hosted several Syrian families over the past decade.

Below is the text of the statement read out at the ASOR Member’s Meeting on November 20th by the Chair of the ASOR Awards Committee.

Lisa Cooper, Professor of Near Eastern Art & Archaeology, University of British Columbia, has worked tirelessly over the past two decades to advance the role of ASOR’s Damascus Committee. Prior to the beginning of the war in Syria, she was a key member on the committee working towards the establishment of an ASOR center in Damascus, as well as leading or participating in several different field projects in the country, most recently at the site of Tell Acharneh. However, since the start of the war in Syria, she has personally invested in the safety and well-being of the Syrian people with whom she worked, securing refugee visas for many of the hired workers from Acharneh village who were caught in the midst of the brutal conflict in the Orontes Valley. After successfully helping to bring several families to live in Vancouver, she has committed since then to helping them make the complex adjustment to life in Canada. Her commitment to the relationships she developed with friends and colleagues with whom she worked in Syria is moving and admirable, and Lisa deserves recognition as a model of what it means to be a Near Eastern archaeologist in the 21st century.