Laurie Johnson, Ph.D

Director, Evaluation Services

I grew up on a farm in Kansas and spent a great amount of time at my grandparents’ house as a kid. My interest in understanding human behavior can be traced back to conversations I had with my emotionally intelligent grandmother. She was always helping me consider other peoples’ viewpoints and I think this led me to want to be a school counselor as my initial undergraduate path. While I never quite made it to a counseling position, I am still very interested in understanding human behavior and the underlying mechanisms that guide it.  I have worked as a paraprofessional, taught third grade, and taught undergraduate psychology courses but it was not until I began my graduate work that I understood my true passion. I love turning messy data into usable information. The messier, the better!

To help me hone my data and research skills, I earned a master’s degree in Educational Psychology and a Ph.D. in Human Factors Psychology, both from Wichita State University in Kansas. Prior to joining NAF, I was employed by the largest school district in Kansas, Wichita Public Schools, where I spent 15 years conducting research, analyzing data, and engaging in evaluation and performance management at the district level.