Johanna Wigg, PhD

Social Gerontologist

Johanna Wigg PhDPresident, The Vicarage by the Sea, Inc.
9 Vicarage Lane
Harpswell, Maine 04079
Home: (207) 833-6178
Office: (207) 833-5480
Cell: (207) 671-0847


Brandeis University

Doctor of Philosophy in Sociology. 2007

Dissertation: “A Culture of Dementia: Examining Interpersonal Relationships Between Elders Living with Dementia.”

Committee: Peter Conrad (chair), Sarah Lamb, Stefan Timmermans, Sara Shostak

Areas of Concentration: Social Gerontology, Social Psychology, Gender Studies, Feminist Theory

Brandeis University

M.A. Joint degree in Sociology and Women’s Studies. 2001

Mount Holyoke College

B.A. Cum Laude. 1993

Major: Women’s Studies


Visiting Assistant Professor: Bowdoin College

Spring 2008 – Introduction to Sociology (SOC 101)

Aging and Society (SOC 231)

Adjunct Lecturer: Bowdoin College

Spring 2009 – Introduction to Sociology (SOC 101)

Fall 2007 – Introduction to Sociology (SOC 101)

Spring 2007 – Introduction to Sociology (SOC 101)

Lecturer: Bradford College

Fall 1997 – Social Problems (SOC 181), Gender and Society (Soc 361)

Fall 1996 – Complex Organizations (SOC 345)


“From Demedicalization to Renaturalization: Dementia and Nature in Harmony,” with Peter Whitehouse, Danny George and Brett Joseph, in Mary Marshall and Jane Gilliard, eds., Fresh Air on My Face: Enabling People with Dementia to Reconnect with Nature, Jessica Kingsley Press, 2012.

“Liberating the Wanderers: Redefining Wandering by Using Technology to Unlock Doors for Those Living with Dementia,” in Kelly Joyce and Meika Loe, eds., Technogenarians: Studying Health and Illness Through an Ageing, Science, and Technology Lens, Wiley-Blackwell, 2010.

“Liberating the Wanderers: Redefining Wandering by Using Technology to Unlock Doors for Those Living with Dementia,” Sociology of Health and Illness, 32: 288-303, 2010.

“Intimacy among the Socially Dead: Examining Intimacy among Institutionalized Elders with Mid to Late Stage Dementia,” in Harry Blatterer and Julia Glass, eds., Times of Our Lives: Making Sense of Growing Up and Growing Old, Inter-Disciplinary Press, 2010


The Tom Kitwood Memorial Address: Beyond the myth – imagining the new worlds of dementia, with Peter Whitehouse and Danny George. The 5th UK Dementia Congress, Bournemouth International Centre, Bournemouth, England, November, 2010.

Segregation versus Desegregation among the Demented: Impacts of Transitions on the Social Identities of Elders Living with Dementia. The British Sociological Association Annual Conference, Glasgow Caledonian University, Glasgow, Scotland, April 2010.

Intimacy among the Socially Dead: Examining Intimacy among Elders with Mid to Late Stage Dementia. 1st Global Conference: Times of Our Lives: Growing Up and Growing Old, Mansfield College, Oxford, England, July 2009.


President, Founder: The Vicarage by the Sea, Inc.

Administration, Research, Education/Teaching, Direct Care. 1998 – Present


Alzheimer’s Association of America

American Sociological Association

American Association of University Women

British Sociological Association


Peter J. Whitehouse, MD, PhD, Professor of Neurology, Case Western Reserve University,; tel. 216-844-6448

Susan Bell, A Myrick Freeman Professor of Social Sciences, Bowdoin College,; tel: 207-725-3292

Peter Conrad, Harry Coplan Professor of Social Sciences, Brandeis University,; tel: 781-736-2653

BDN: How this home in Maine is giving normalcy to people living with dementia

Advocating for the whole person living with dementia

Person Centered Approach to Dementia Care

Person Centered Care for those living with Dementia

Understanding Dementia: Q&A with Dr. Wigg

Dementia Doesn't Define a Person