Directory & Faculty Profiles

Katherine Downey, PhD

Katherine Downey’s career is characterized by work at the intersections of disciplines. She brought to her second career as scholar and teacher the variety of her experiences from her first career in national sales management of high technology materials; her education in history, organizational management, biblical literature, and cultural studies; and her public and private school teaching, online and f2f, of humanities, literature, philosophy, and social science research. She has taught not just what she knew but what she wanted to learn and at these intersections finds energy for new ideas. As university lecturer and administrator, independent school teacher, scholarly association leader, and mother of a daughter in college, Kathy has served in leadership roles that arose organically from a nexus of organizational need and her propensity to work collaboratively with others to restructure messy situations. She thinks of leadership as service to others, allowing them to contribute and create. Dr Downey has directed more than 30 UOP/SAS doctoral dissertations and served on the committees of dozens more students. She is particularly interested in 21st-century leadership challenges and opportunities in general, and in specific how scholarship and practice might interact most productively. She is currently developing a research project to study the preparation for and value of the "working doctorate." She is also interested in redefining organizational leadership structures for more democratic involvement of the organization's members and more collaborative decision making. Having retired in 2015 from 20 years of full-time classroom teaching and 15 years before that in high technology sales management, Kathy now serves on the Board of Directors of the American Academy of Religion and teaches part time in a Master of Liberal Arts program, where she is experimenting with inquiry-driven learning.

Scholarship & Research

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Associate Faculty
Dissertation Chair
Committee Member
Primary College or School: 
School of Advanced Studies