President Obama’s March 2013 visit to Jordan culminated with a Saturday midday tour of Petra, organized in collaboration with the American Center of Oriental Research (ACOR). The visit was planned with the assistance of ACOR Associate Director Dr. Christopher Tuttle, an archaeologist and prominent expert on Petra who led Vice President and Dr. Jill Biden’s tour of the site in 2010.
Dr. Tuttle met the President along with the Minister of Tourism and Antiquities, Nayef Al Fayyez, and the Commissioners of the Petra Development and Tourism Regional Authority (PDTRA). During an exchange with the President, Dr. Tuttle discussed ACOR’s work in Petra and the Brown University Great Temple Project. He was also thanked by Ambassador Stuart Jones for his part in the tour.
Suleiman Farajat, a tourism specialist from the University of Jordan, guided the President through the Siq, while Dr. Tuttle led members of the Oval Office and White House staff on a fuller tour through the Siq. ACOR Director Dr. Barbara A. Porter led 60 members of the White House press corps around Petra. White House personnel thanked ACOR for the tours, noting that the experience was greatly enjoyed and appreciated.
ACOR is a member of the Council of American Overseas Research Centers (CAORC), a consortium of 23 centers that receives funding from ECA to facilitate advanced research which helps build the capacity of American experts in world regions, international affairs, and foreign languages by enabling American scholars to carry out vital research contributing to our understanding of and interaction with the world.