She attended the University of California, Berkeley for her entire education, earning her Bachelor of Arts in 1970, her Master of Arts in 1974, and her anthropology Doctor of Philosophy in 1984.
She is the director of the Smithsonian Institution"s American Indian Program. The research for her doctorate focused on the Gallup ceremonial, an annual tourist event held in Gallup, New Mexico to display the Native American arts of that region. While working on her Doctor of Philosophy, Archambault worked as the Director of Ethnic studies at the California College of Arts and Crafts in Oakland, California from 1978 to 1983.
That year, she became a professor at the University of Wisconsin.
In 1986, she moved to the Smithsonian Institution, where she has spent the bulk of her career. As of 2015, she is the Director of the American Indian program at the National Museum of Natural History in Washington, District of Columbia. She has taught classes in Native American studies at numerous colleges and universities including Pine Ridge Tribal College, Pine Ridge Reservation, South Dakota.
University of California, Berkeley. The University of New Mexico.
And Johns Hopkins University.
American Ethnological Society
Commission on Native American Reburial of the American Anthropological Association
University of California Joint Academic Senate-Administration Committee on Human Skeletal Remains
Archambault was responsible for the redesign of the North American Indian Ethnology Halls for the “Changing Culture in a Changing World” exhibit. She has also curated four major exhibits: “Plains Indian Arts: Change and Continuity” (1987), “100 Years of Plains Indian Painting” (1989), “Indian Basketry and Their Makers” (1990), and “Seminole!” (1990). She also contributed to the Los Angeles Southwest Museum’s quincentennial exhibit “Grand-father, Heart our voices” in 1992.
Member of Plains Anthropol. Society, Studies in American Indian Literature, Society for Applied Anthropology, Native American Art Studies Association, Council for Museum Anthropology, Anthropol. Society of Washington, American Ethnological Society, American Anthropol.
Association (member commission on Native American reburial).