Thriving in Leadership: Strategies for Making a Difference in Christian Higher Education

Posted: August 16, 2012

 Thriving in Leadership:  Strategies for Making a Difference in Christian Higher Education, edited by Karen A. Longman, is divided into three sections:  “The Interior Life of Thriving Leaders,” followed by “The Social Intelligence of Thriving Leaders” – which focuses on the relational side of leadership, and “How Leaders Can Shape a Thriving Organizational Culture.”  The book is featured on the website of Abilene Christian University Press (see



        About the Book

Thriving in Leadership: Strategies for Making a Difference in Christian Higher Education, edited by Karen A. Longman, includes contributions by 16 other senior leaders in Christ-centered colleges and universities across North America. This compilation represents an engaging introduction to leadership approaches and strategies in Christian higher education, designed to strengthen the leaders of today and inspire the leaders of tomorrow.


What People Are Saying:

 “Here is a book on leadership that is practical and spiritual, grounded and inspiring. These essays by seasoned leaders in the academy shed light on ‘secrets hidden in plain sight’ that all academic leaders should find of lasting value: the importance of ‘showing up’ as a whole person; the centrality of tenacious relationships; the vital role of rich, transformative conversations with all stakeholders; and the courage it takes to lead in ways that do not always conform to our cultural model assumptions about how leaders should act. I hope this book will gain a wide audience in and out of Christian higher education. Its hard-won and well-tested insights can help campus leaders of every sort navigate the tricky terrain that higher education travels today.”

—Parker J. Palmer, author of Healing and the Heart of Democracy, The Courage to Teach, and Let Your Life Speak

“If you are drawn to the topic of leadership, especially in the context of a Christian serving in higher education, this book is a must read. I am challenged by these amazing authors and feel short-changed in not having their insights earlier in my career. I will call upon this deep well of scholarship, theory, practice and stories many times in my work with diverse leaders.”
—Robert C. Andringa, president emeritus of the Council for Christian Colleges & Universities and managing partner of The Andringa Group
Thriving in Leadership is an engaging conversation about the complexities, pressures, and joys of senior leadership in Christian higher education. The authors draw on their vast professional experience and the latest leadership literature to offer insights into the best practices in organizational leadership.”

—Alec Hill, president of InterVarsity Christian Fellowship USA

 “Thriving in Leadership is indispensable for anyone committed to leadership excellence in Christian higher education. If you seek best practices in leadership for yourself and your organization that offer a collegial, collaborative, and empowering approach that foster transformation, start here. Those who have contributed to this remarkable effort are gifted and accomplished leaders in their own right. I respect their wisdom, I seek their advice, and I recommend their scholarship in this book.”
—Jon R. Wallace, president of Azusa Pacific University

“Rooted in lived experience, these leaders have shaped a compelling narrative of what leadership has been, is now, and should be in the future. This volume, which contributes greatly to the field of higher educational leadership, will be an invaluable resource for my own leadership team.”

Kim S. Phipps, president of Messiah College and Chair of the Board of the Council for Christian Colleges & Universities

“This book shows that not only has a new generation arrived, but they also have much wisdom to teach all of us about kingdom leadership!”

Richard J. Mouw, president of Fuller Theological Seminary

“Karen Longman has assembled an impressive group of leaders who have contributed significantly to Christ-centered higher education with this collection of theory-based, research-laced essays loaded with anecdotal stories and practical advice ready for real-life application. This volume should become a well-worn reference book in the libraries of leaders and students of leadership alike.”

Paul Corts, president emeritus of the Council for Christian Colleges & Universities

“The challenges of our country and our world call for gifted individuals to provide insightful and competent leadership. This encouraging yet provocative book draws from the leadership well of such gifted leaders, offering fresh insights that can benefit readers across the non-profit and for-profit spectrum. The role of Christian higher education can and should model the way for exemplary mission-driven leadership. Reading this book will give you practical lessons that will benefit the kingdom in all your spheres of influence.”

— Rick Warren, founding pastor of Saddleback Church 



Thriving in Leadership will be released August 7, 2012 by ACU Press.



Note: This information is current for the 2017-18 academic year; however, all stated academic information is subject to change. Please refer to the current Academic Catalog for more information.