Joanna grew up in a rural church, Cameron Presbyterian Church, and grew to appreciate friendship and ministry with those both older and younger and credits this experience as a starting point for her love for the intergenerational character of the church.
While a student at St. Andrews Presbyterian College Joanna had opportunities to work as youth director at two different churches, as camp director at Montreat Camp and Conference Center, and attend the Montreat College Conference. Upon graduation with a BA in Religious Studies (and double minor in English and Women’s Studies), Joanna landed at Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary.
While at LPTS training in hospital chaplaincy at the University of Louisville Hospital in the trauma center much of her learning came through trial by fire. Also, she was privileged to participate with the World Council of Churches on two different occasions, one in Crete, Greece in 2012 and another time in Busan and Seoul Korea leading two sessions of a seminar on the Ecumenical Movement in the 21st Century. These experiences led her to spend a year in Hannover, Germany after graduation from LPTS. While there she worked with World Communion of Reformed Churches in the areas of Justice, Partnership and Communication. Much of her work revolved around social media and confronted the problems of human trafficking and gender based violence.
Joanna was ordained at her home church, Cameron Prebyterian Church, in October 2015. She currently serves as the Associate Pastor of Youth and Missions.