Joseph Mead is an Assistant Professor at Cleveland State University, where he holds joint appointments with the Cleveland-Marshall College of Law and the Maxine Goodman Levin College of Urban Affairs. Professor Mead's primary research interests include nonprofit law and policy and the criminalization of poverty. He volunteers as a cooperating attorney with the American Civil Liberties Union of Ohio.

Before joining Cleveland State, Professor Mead served as a Trial Attorney for the United States Department of Justice in Washington DC, where he defended the constitutionality of federal statutes and advised and represented federal agencies in constitutional and other complex litigation across the country. He received his law degree, magna cum laude, from the University of Michigan law school.