M. Lindell Joseph, PhD, RN, FAAN, FAONL

Professor (Clinical) & Distinguished Scholar in Nursing
Director, DNP & MSN Health Systems: Administration/Executive Leadership programs

Dr. M. Lindell Joseph is a health care leader, innovator, and professor. She teaches leadership, innovation, health systems improvement, and project development within the College of Nursing MSN-CNL and DNP programs.

In 2019, Dr. Joseph was elected to the AONE Foundation, Board of Directors and appointed to the Forum for Shared Governance Advisory Group. She currently chairs the Healthy Habits Interdisciplinary Advisory Group, a population health initiative to promote health and well-being at St. Patrick's Church in Iowa City. In 2018, she was inducted into the American Academy of Nursing.

From 2016-2018, Dr. Joseph served on the American Organization for Nurse Executives’ (AONE) Board of Directors and was an Ex Officio Member on the American Hospital Association, Regional Policy Board for Region 6 (Iowa, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Kansas, North Dakota, and South Dakota). In 2014- 2016, she served on the Board of Directors for CGEAN and was the Vice President for Programs and Professional Development. While in that role, she served as the Chair for the International Nursing Administration Research Conference (INARC) in 2014 and 2016. 

Dr. Joseph’s program of research centers on shared governance and innovation. Through mixed methods studies, Dr. Joseph co-developed the General Effectiveness Multilevel Theory for Shared Governance (GEMS Theory). GEMS is a systematic, evidence-based approach that prepares nursing leadership to gain higher productivity from the nursing workforce and that enables Nursing Practice Councils (NPCs) to become increasingly effective through three phases of shared governance. She serves as a consultant for GEMS, the only program theory for shared governance in nursing practice.

Prior to joining the University of Iowa, she was the co-developer and Lead Research Scientist over an eight hospital health care system nursing research and innovation program for the Adventist System in the Southern United States. In that role, she managed the knowledge enterprise for evidence-based nursing and leadership practice. Dr. Joseph used research and evaluation methods to enable leadership effectiveness and nursing practice council effectiveness. She also evaluated workplace cultures and social systems to redesign leadership practices, nursing practice, and patient care. Early in her career, she co-developed and directed the Center for Continuing Education. In that role, she directed corporate level interdisciplinary continuing education using creative teaching strategies, multiple levels of evaluations, and industry partnerships.

Currently, Dr. Joseph leads the Innovation Scholarly Interest Group (SIG) in the College of Nursing. Within this SIG, knowledge is generated for innovativeness within practice and academia. Dr. Joseph is also engaged in research on GEMS Shared Governance and the Clinical Nurse Leader (CNL) Practice of Interdependency.

Curriculum Vitae


Research areas
  • Innovativeness
  • GEMS shared governance
  • Leadership
  • Work place culture
  • CNL interdependency
Maria (Lindell) Joseph
PhD, Capella University
MS, Andrews University
BSN, Southern Adventist University
AA, University of the Virgin Islands