SAFE Beacon Award Winner Egyptian archaeologist led SAFE Tours a at the Metropolitan Museum and the Brooklyn Museum on her visit to New York.

Join Egyptian archaeologist Dr. Monica Hanna, 2014 SAFE Beacon Award Winner, as she leads us through the Egyptian galleries at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Brooklyn Museum. Right in front of some of the world’s most renowned Egyptian collections, Dr. Hanna will share firsthand accounts of the ongoing looting in Egypt and the damaging effects this has on the country’s cultural heritage. This is a not-to-be-missed opportunity to learn about a critical, international problem from an expert eye witness. Tours last approximately one and a half hours and will allow for more casual discussions at the end.

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Dr. Monica Hanna has dedicated more than half her life to protecting and preserving the cultural heritage of Egypt. She completed her undergraduate degree in Egyptology and Archaeological Chemistry at the American University in Cairo and later completed her doctorate at the University of Pisa, Italy. Her research focuses on space, knowledge, and identity of archaeological sites, with particular interest in the different meanings and reflections of heritage regarding the identity of space and communities. She has been working on a project in al-Qurna, Luxor on the different narratives of the multiple worlds of the Theban Necropolis and its meanings to the various stakeholders.

Dr. Hanna was in the midst of conducting postdoctoral research as a post-doctoral fellow in the Topoi Cluster of Excellence in the Department of Egyptology and North African Studies at Humboldt University in Berlin when she decided to return to Egypt to document the looting situation, which has and continues to become increasingly acute following the 2011 uprising. Using social media tools to their fullest potential, Dr. Hanna created and currently maintains Egypt’s Heritage Task Force, while also contributing to other social media platforms. This work has expedited the recovery of stolen objects, effectively reducing the supply side of the illicit antiquities trade. In addition, she also consults with government officials and recently lobbied for the introduction of new articles in the Constitution specifically created to protect cultural heritage. She was voted one of the seven “People of the Year” by EGYPT TODAY magazine, as well as one of the “Top Arab Women in 2013″ by AsiaN.

Dr. Hanna’s perseverance and emotional investment, combined with her tenacity and expertise, strategically position her as an effective activist and as an expert witness in the fight against looting and the illicit antiquities trade. Currently, Dr. Hanna lives in Heliopolis where she was born. She is working on a book on the social histories of archaeological sites, which is to be published by Humboldt University.