Joy grew up in Australia and graduated from Sydney University Medical School in 1981, having also done a BSc (Med) there. She came to New Zealand in 1983 and did one year at the Bible College of NZ (now Laidlaw College) where she met her husband.
Joy has worked in general practice since 1984, at Massey Medical since 1994. She has three adult children, 1 grandchild, a dog and a cat which all help to keep her busy. Her hobbies are music, dance and reading.