• Professor
  • MSW Program Director
Liffrig Family School of Education and Behavioral Sciences

About Me

I am a social work professor here at the University of Mary and serve as the Master of Social Work program director. Prior to these positions, I served at the University of North Dakota and, during my social work career, held a range of clinical and administrative positions in healthcare and community-based organizations.

Why I’m At Mary

Throughout my social work career, I have had a passion for working collaboratively with colleagues and students to create learning communities that develop organizations and systems of care that respond to the needs of others. The University of Mary provides me with the environment to live out this passion daily.


My areas of research are focused on the identification of factors that contribute to the successful implementation of evidence-based practices within organizations and communities, creating caring organizations and community-based systems of care for older adults, particularly those with dementia-related conditions in rural communities. My clinical interests are focused on adults with depression, anxiety, trauma, relationship issues, and chronic pain.

Hutton, H., Nedegaard, R. & Flanagan, K. (2021). Application of the Wilbarger Protocol in Reducing Agitated Behavior in Long Term Care Residents with Dementia. Int Journal of Alzheimer’s and Dementia. (1)1,1-5. 

Flanagan, K. M. (2018). Remembering Faith: Rural Faith Communities' Outreach to Members with Dementia. Social Work and Christianity, 45(1), 24-41.

Jayasundara, D., Nedegaard, R., Flanagan, K., Phillips, A., Weeks, A. (2017). Leveraging Faith to Help End Domestic Violence: Perspectives from Five Traditions. Social Work and Christianity, 44(4), 39-66.

Heitkamp, T., Vermillion, L., Flanagan, K., Nedegaard, R. (2015). Lessons Learned: Outreach Education in Collaboration with Tribal Colleges. Journal of American Indian Education, 54(2), 69-84.

Flanagan, K. M. (2014). Moving from Managing Organizations to Creating Social Enterprises: Entrepreneurial Social Work and Advanced Generalist Education. Advanced Generalist Social Work Research Journal, 1(2), 1-18.

Jayasundara, D., Nedegaard, R., Sharma, B., Flanagan, K. (2014). Intimate Partner Violence in Muslim Communities. Arts and Social Sciences Journal.

Flanagan, K., Heitkamp, T., Nedegaard, R., Jayasundara, D. (2014). Black Gold and the Dark Underside of Oil Development on Human Service Delivery. Contemporary Rural Social Work, 6, 86-106.

Flanagan, K. M. (2014). Subsidiarity: A Path for Moving Beyond the Left/Right Divide Regarding Social Programs in the United States. Journal of Sociology and Social Work, 2(1), 181-193.

Flanagan, K., Flanagan, K. M. (2012). Marital Spirituality: A Framework for Integrating Relationship Enhancement with Spiritual Growth in Marital Interventions. Journal of Christian Healing, 28(1), 5-23.

Flanagan, K., Third World Congress on Existential Therapy, “Working Existentially with Older Adults”. Athens, Greece (May 3, 2023). 

Flanagan, K., North Dakota Symposium on Adults and Aging Services, “Hierarchy of Ethical Decision Making”., Bismarck, ND (October 27, 2022).

Flanagan, K., Mountain Plains Mental Health Technology Transfer Center. “Suicide in America’s Heartland”. (September 7, 2022).

Flanagan, K., “Elders and Substance Use”. Indigenous Communities Collaborative, Opioid Response Network, Bismarck, ND (August 16, 2022).

Flanagan, K., Wellness and Well-being in Rural Communities: Strengths, Challenges and Strategies Conference, “Supporting Recovery in Rural Communities: Engaging Faith Supports” National Institute on Social Work and Human Services in Rural Areas, Nacogdoches, TX. (July 12, 2022).

Flanagan, K., Keynote Presenter, Trusted Sister: Redeemed Woman’s Conference 2022, “Who Do You Say I Am? Spiritual and Psychological Perspectives” Diocese of Fargo, Fargo, ND (March 5, 2022). 

McLean, A., Flanagan, K., Mountain Plains Mental Health Technology Transfer Center, “Evidence-Based Treatment for Depression, (March 1, 2022).

Flanagan, K., Mountain Plains Mental Health Technology Transfer Center, “Depression and Collaborative Care”, (December 15, 2021).

Flanagan, K., Organization for American States, Inter-American Drug Abuse Control Commission, “Adverse Childhood Experiences and Trauma”, (November 5, 2021).

Flanagan, K., North Dakota Behavioral Health Conference, “Panel on Suicide” North Dakota Department of Human Services, Bismarck, ND, (October 27, 2021).

Flanagan, K., Mountain Plains Mental Health Technology Transfer Center, “Mental Health Supports in Rural Communities: (October 19, 2021).

Flanagan, K., Mountain Plains Mental Health Technology Transfer Center, “Supporting Rural Aging Populations”, (October 12, 2021).

Flanagan, K., Mountain Plains Mental Health Technology Transfer Center, “Employing Treatment & Environmental Supports to Rural Populations”, (October 5, 2021). 


PhD: The Ohio State University, 1994
MSW: The Ohio State University, 1984
BA: Franciscan University of Steubenville, 1978