M. Jean Russell
Applied Organizational Research

Professional Experience

M. Jean Russell, Ph.D. brings to the University, and the Division of Continuing Education & Professional Studies, a unique blend of education, philanthropy, and human services.

Jean began the artistic part of her career studying with Simon Baruch, a protégé of Pablo Picasso, to gain training as a set designer in the motion picture industry. Becoming a producer, she collaborated with acclaimed filmmakers John Huston, Frank Capra, and Wilson Dalzell on film and television productions.

After finishing her formal education, Dr. Russell’s academic accomplishments include dean-level administration for Saint Louis University and Webster University, and instructional success in the design, implementation, and management of curriculum for globally focused business programs. She has designed and delivered more than 60 graduate, undergraduate and secondary courses, along with certificate classes, in both traditional classrooms and online formats.

As a humanitarian Dr. Russell is the former Vice President for International and Domestic Development for Wings of Hope. She has traveled extensively in South America and Africa, living and working among indigenous tribes to learn and understand the struggles of the human condition at the village level. Her development work was successful because she bridged all stakeholders, country presidents with regional leaders, and tribal chiefs, then identified high impact funders and authored compelling proposals to fund initiatives for healthcare, education, and sustainable community development programs designed to permanently break the cyclical nature of poverty. In part because of her pioneering work with Wings of Hope, the organization received a Nobel Peace Prize nomination in 2012.

In pursuit of educational excellence, and to satisfy her lifelong love of academia, Dr. Russell has turned her talents to the University of Colorado, serving as a faculty member in the Master of Science in Organizational Leadership program. In this position she uses her collaborative style, understanding of curriculum, deep intellectual capacity, and accomplished administrative and teaching skills to engage, strengthen communication, and ultimately better serve students.

Education and Training

  • PhD, Foundations of Education
    Saint Louis University
    Dissertation: The Influence of Experiential Learning on Filmmakers Wilson Dalzell and John Thomas Creecy
  • MA, American Studies
    Saint Louis University
  • BLS, Communication
    Saint Louis University
  • Graduate Certificate, Paralegal Studies
    Webster University

Research, Presentations, and Publications

  • Casaregola, V., Russell, M. J. (Eds.). (2003). Writing program resource manual, English Department, Saint Louis University. Boston: Pearson Education.
  • Russell, M. J., & Bolfeta, T. (Eds.). (2002). Educational philosophy: Foundations and philosophers (1st, 2nd & 3rd eds.). Boston: Pearson Education.
  • Russell, M. J., Catapano, S., & et al. (1994). Fontbonne college research and report guidelines. St. Louis: Fontbonne University Press.


  • University of Colorado Boulder
  • The Catholic University of America
    Key Successes: 2015 Outstanding Professor, Metropolitan School of Professional Studies
  • Washington University