Barbara A. Porter is the director of the American Center of Oriental Research in Amman. She received her A.B. from Bryn Mawr College and her M.A., Ph.D., and M.Phil. from the Department of Art History and Archaeology at Columbia University. Her dissertation dealt with Old Syrian cylinder seals. She served on the curatorial staff of the Metropolitan Museum of Art from 1978 to 1986 in the Department of Egyptian Art and the Department of Ancient Near Eastern Art and was an adjunct instructor in the Department of Fine Arts at New York University in the 1990s. She led many archaeological tours from Algeria to Iran before moving to Jordan in 2006.