Center Leadership

The INRHE Center will be led by Executive Director, John Lowe, PhD, RN, FAAN, (Cherokee/Creek/Lenape) the College of Nursing McKenzie Professor in Health Disparities Research.  Dr. Lowe is currently one of only 22 doctoral prepared Native American nurses in the United States.

John LoweJohn Lowe, PhD, RN, FAAN

Dr. Lowe is a Fellow into the American Academy of Nursing. He is also an alumnus of the American Nurses Association Ethnic Minority Fellowship pre-doctoral program and now serves as the Vice-Chair of the Advisory Committee. He actively serves in elected, appointed, advisory and consultant positions such as the National Institutes of Health, Intervention Research to Improve Native American Health (IRINAH) National Institutes of Health Coalition, American Colleges of Nursing (AACN) Endowment for Cultural Competencies in Graduate Nursing, American Academy of Nursing Diversity and Inclusivity Committee American Nurses Foundation, Florida Nurses Association, Florida Nurses Foundation, Advisory Council of the State Implementation Program of the Florida Action Coalition on the Future of Nursing, National Coalition of Minority Nurses Associations, National Alaskan Native American Indian Nurses Association, Pathways into Health, United States Department of Health and Human Services, Editorial Board of Nursing Research Journal, United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians Health Department, Cherokee Nation Healthy Nations Programs, University of Southern Queensland Centre for Rural and Remote Area Health Research, Canadian Institute of Health Research, Health Research Board of Ireland Research Scientific Review Committee, Italian Ministry of Health Republic of Italy Ministry of Labour Health and Social Policies Research Scientific Review Committee, Indigenous Wellness Institute, Indigenous HIV/AIDS Research Training Institute, and the Indian Health Service.

Dr. Lowe has represented Native American and Indigenous nurses in many national and international forums and with national leaders such as the U.S. Surgeon General, the former first lady, Mrs. Rosalyn Carter, and Representative Patrick Kennedy. Globally, he has provided health-care services and research consultation to underserved/disadvantaged groups in countries such as Australia, New Zealand, Tanzania, Costa Rica, Jamaica and China. He advocates for the cultural competent health care of Native Americans and Indigenous people globally. Models that have emerged from his funded research are being used to promote the health and well-being of Native Americans and Indigenous people globally. He developed and studies an intervention for the reduction of substance abuse and other risk behaviors among Native American and Indigenous youth. Dr. Lowe developed the Cherokee Self-Reliance, Native Self-Reliance and Native Reliance Models which are being used in several intervention research projects that utilizes the traditional Talking Circle format to reduce substance abuse and other risk behaviors among Native American youth. He is currently the Principal Investigator of several National Institutes of Health funded research projects. The Talking Circle intervention has been noted by the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of Justice Programs as a Promising Evidence-Based Program for the well-being of youth.

Dr. Lowe also co-authored the Native American Nursing Conceptual Framework which is being used to guide nursing curriculums. His work has been acknowledged through his induction as a fellow in the American Academy of Nursing and numerous awards such as the Florida Nurses Association Cultural Diversity Award, Great 100 Centennial Research Award, Nursing Educator of the Year Award, Nurse of the Year Award, Lifetime Achievement In Education & Research Award, and the Researcher of the Year at the Professor Rank Award. Dr. Lowe has presented nationally and internationally and has published several articles and books that report the findings of his research.

Center Staff

John Phillip (JP) Gonzalez
Program Director, Science & Research

Melessa Kelley, RN, PhD
Post-Doctoral Scholar