Jo studied Psychology at Leeds Trinity University, achieving a Bachelor of Arts with Honours degree in 1995, later achieving a Master of Science Degree in Forensic Practice (Health Sciences) in 2003 at the University of Northumbria, Newcastle. Jo also completed a Postgraduate diploma in Cognitive Therapy at the Newcastle Cognitive and Behavioural Therapies Centre in 2006.
Jo began working for the Prison Service in 1999, working within the high security estate at HMP Frankland and Wakefield. During her employment she gained extensive experience working with males convicted of high risk violent and sexual offences, and was a therapist and supervisor for the Sex Offender Treatment Programme. She also worked within the Severe Personality Disorder Service at HMP Frankland, responsible for completing criteria assessments for the service, and developing treatment pathways for complex presentations.
In 2012 Jo was trained in the assessment of prisoners convicted under the Counter Terrorism Act.
Jo has completed assessments with female and younger prisoners, both indeterminate and Life sentenced for a number of clients, solicitors, private independent companies and the Parole Board.
Jo has also worked within a private mental health setting as a psychologist, and has experience of developing both Axis I and II treatment formulations. Previously she was employed as a manager for a Supported Housing Complex and a Day Centre, working with those experiencing chronic and enduring mental health needs and personality difficulties.
Jo is trained and experienced in a wide range of forensic risk assessment tools, including the Hare Psychopathy Checklist with a certificate of interrater reliability, and the International Personality Disorder Examination. Jo became self-employed in 2012 and is commissioned by a number of different providers.