Dr. Lisa Edwards named director of the Institute for Women’s Leadership 

Dr. Lisa Edwards, professor of counselor education and counseling psychology in the College of Education, has been named director of the Institute for Women’s Leadership. She succeeds Dr. Jennica Webster, professor of management in the College of Business Administration, who stepped down at the end of 2023. 

“We are thrilled to welcome Dr. Edwards as the director of the Institute for Women’s Leadership,” said Dr. Jeanne Hossenlopp, vice president for research and innovation. “She has been a valued member of the IWL research community, as well as a highly respected campus leader, which gives her a great appreciation for and commitment to the institute’s mission of research, community and opportunity. We are excited for the fresh perspective she will bring to the IWL through her leadership and vision.”  

Webster had served on the IWL’s leadership team since its inception, first as co-director. She was named director in September 2022. 

“I am incredibly appreciative of Dr. Webster’s contributions to the IWL since it began,” Hossenlopp said. “She has been instrumental in its foundation, growth and the successes it has seen. While she is no longer serving in an official capacity, I am grateful to her continued support as an engaged member of the IWL community.” 

Edwards directs the Culture and Well-Being Research Lab in the Department of Counselor Education and Counseling Psychology. Her research focuses on multicultural counseling, the intersection of strengths and culture, and perinatal mental health among Latinas. Edwards launched Proyecto Mamá, a grant-funded resource and needs assessment of perinatal mental health among Latinas in the Milwaukee area, and she currently co-directs the Multicultural Perinatal Mental Health Collaborative. The overall goal of this work is to better understand how to support Latina mothers and families during pregnancy and postpartum, and how to address barriers to mental health care and well-being during these critical life periods.   

The Institute for Women’s Leadership builds upon Marquette University’s historic role as the first coeducational Catholic university in the world beginning in 1909. The mission of the IWL is to support and conduct cutting-edge gender research and build transformational experiences and relationships that empower women and advance women’s leadership.