Greenleaf Scholar Recipients


The Greenleaf Scholars Application Process is now open. Grant selections will be announced in early May 2016. More details about the Greenleaf Scholars program can be found here.

Apply: The deadline for the 2016 program application is Friday, March 18, 2016. All application materials may be downloaded here.

Previous Greenleaf Scholars

The Greenleaf Center for Servant Leadership is pleased to support the following individuals who have been selected as Greenleaf Scholars.

2016 Scholars


Nathan is currently a Lecturer at the Monash Business School in the Department of Management. He completed his Ph.D. in 2014 from Monash University, after previously completing a Bachelor of Business (Honors) in Management and a Bachelor of Arts (Politics/Drama). His Ph.D. dissertation focused on the role that organizational structure and the leader’s decision-making process has over the relationship between servant leadership and follower attitudes; while his Honors dissertation examined servant leadership development in secondary colleges in Australia.

This research draws from the social cognitive and leadership developmental readiness theories to examine the positive and negative personality antecedents of servant leadership and the role that leader developmental readiness plays in moderating this relationship.


Chad is an assistant professor in Managerial Studies at Georgia State University and completed his Ph.D. in May 2012 at the University of Arizona. Dr. Hartnell’s research focuses on leadership and organizational culture, how they interrelate, and the intervening mechanisms through which they influence organizational, unit, and individual effectiveness.

His proposal for this study is to integrate extant models of servant leadership with insights from social identity theory, Chad will develop and test a cross-level model that identifies antecedents to servant leadership behavior and illuminates processes through which servant leaders transform followers into servant leaders themselves.


Richard Iron Cloud is currently employed as the Director of Graduate Studies at Oglala Lakota College. He received his BA from Fort Lewis College in Durango CO and his MA from Oglala Lakota College. He is currently working on his dissertation for a PhD in Psychology from Walden University.   His eclectic career has been mostly in the human services. He is also an Instructor at Oglala Lakota College and a volunteer Peace Maker for the Oglala Sioux Tribal Court System.

His research will establish the relationship between acculturation and leadership style among graduates of the Oglala Lokota Leadership Program. This study is pursued as a direct response to a grievance made by an elder of the community and concern that the college has failed to assure that students and graduates understand the importance traditional culture plays in self-preservation and community leadership.


Jeremy D. Meuser was born and raised in the Detroit suburbs. After completing a bachelors’ in computer engineering at the University of Michigan’s College of Engineering, Ann Arbor, he began a career in information technology (IT), which followed from 3 successful internships at Fortune 500 IT companies. He was the director of IT for the Orchard Lake Schools, taught high school and college level IT industry certification courses, and was a founding partner for an IT limited liability corporation in the State of Michigan. He was exposed to Organizational Behavior (OB) through a class at Wayne State University, and worked on course staff for the 7 subsequent semesters. This experience shifted his focus from machines in the organization to the people who comprise the organization. After completing a certificate in spirituality from Creighton University, Omaha, Nebraska, and a degree in philosophy and 3 years of the program of priestly formation at Sacred Heart Major Seminary, Detroit, MI, he discerned to devote his life to the study of the impact of leadership on individuals in organizations.

Jeremy has been a proactive research contributor in the OB/HR PhD program at UIC. Now a PhD candidate in his final year, Jeremy’s research program focuses on leadership and the impact of leadership upon the individuals who experience it. Servant leadership, differential leader treatment (leader-member exchange and idiosyncratic deals), and employee identification are his primary areas of interest. His work on servant leadership has been published in the Academy of Management JournalThe Leadership Quarterly, and The Oxford Handbook of Leadership in Organizations.


Tyree Mitchell is currently a fifth-year doctoral candidate in the Industrial/Organizational psychology program at DePaul University. Beginning in the fall of 2016, Tyree will be starting a new academic position as an assistant professor at Louisiana State University, specifically within the School of Human Resource Education and Workforce Development (SHREWD). His primary research interests are in organizational leadership and work teams.

This research will examine the effects of several individual differences (core self-evaluation [CSE], emotional intelligence [EL], extraversion and agreeableness) and their interactive effects (EL and agreeableness, CSE and agreeableness) on servant leadership behaviors. Further, need for affiliation is hypothesized to mediate the agreeableness-servant leadership relationship and need for power is hypothesized to mediate the extraversion-servant leadership relationship. Data will be collected from managers and subordinates from two different organizations. This research also attempts to provide additional construct validity evidence for servant leadership behavior by examining the differing effects of these antecedents on related leadership behaviors (transformational and ethical leadership).


Junfeng Wu is a Ph.D. candidate in Organizational Behavior and Human Resources at the Department of Managerial Studies, University of Illinois at Chicago. He received his B.A. in Business Administration and his M.A. in Business Management from the School of Business at Renmin University of China. His current research interests include: servant leadership, employee creativity and multilevel phenomena and interpersonal processes in workgroups.

Perspective taking is a cognitive process in which one considers another’s viewpoint or generally sees the world through another’s vantage point. Drawing upon theory and research on perspective taking, Mr. Wu’s dissertation seeks to understand how and when servant leadership affects group creativity. Specifically, he posits that servant leadership fosters group perspective taking, meaning that within a work group, group members consider or adopt their coworkers’ viewpoints. He seeks to develop and test the idea that group perspective taking is a double-edged sword for group creativity, at the surface level, offering positive impact by improving group coordination; while at the underlying level, engendering group perspective convergence. Theoretical boundary conditions for the aforementioned relationships are examined. Mr. Wu will defend his dissertation in March 2017.

2015 Scholars

Birna is a PhD student in the business department at Reykjavik University in Iceland. For her doctoral thesis she has been researching frameworks for creativity since 2012. She received her masters’ degree in International Business from Griffith University in Australia and her bachelor degree in Business Administration from Reykjavik University. Birna has also studied human resource management, Neuro linguistic programming (NLP) and executive coaching.

Seth Martinez is originally from San Jose, CA. He completed a bachelor’s degree at Brigham Young University-Idaho. In 2010, Martinez earned a master’s degree at Brigham Young University. Currently, he is a fourth-year doctoral student in the Instructional Systems Technology program at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana. As a doctoral student, Seth spent two years as the co-chair for a conference (IST Conference 2012 & 2013) hosted by the Instructional Systems Technology department of the School of Education at IU. Within the IST program, his academic concentration is centered around organizational learning and performance. Martinez is directing his focus toward research activities in leadership development.

2014 Scholars

The title of Xiaoyun Cao’s research project is “Managerial Decisions on Customized Work Arrangements – An Investigation of Who and What Servant Leaders Prioritize.” She will be conducting her research with Dr. Robert C. Liden at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC).

The title of Klein’s research project is “The Positive Impact that Servant-Leaders Have on Employee Engagement: The Mediating Roles of Trust and Fit Perceptions.” He will be conducting his research with Drs. Todd Darnold and Donna Ehrlich at Creighton University.

The title of Michel’s research project is “The Paradox of Servant Leadership and the Work-Family Interface.” He will be conducting his research with Dr. Sandy J. Wayne at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC).

The title of Pircher Verdorfer’s research project is “Mindfulness and Servant Leadership: An Empirical Investigation of Mediating Mechanisms” He will be conducting his research at Technische Universität München (TUM) in Germany.

2013 Scholars

Kaifeng Jiang is a fifth-year doctoral candidate of School of Management and Labor Relations at Rutgers University. His primary research interests focus on the effects of human resource management practices on employee, team, and organizational outcomes. Related interests include leadership, work teams, organizational climate, employee engagement, and employee turnover. Jiang recently became an Assistant Professor of Department of Management of Mendoza College of Business at University of Notre Dame. The title of Jiang’s research project is “Mangers’ Role in Shaping Employees’ Perceptions of Human Resource Management Practices.”

G. James Lemoine, Jr., is a fourth-year doctoral candidate studying organizational behavior at the Georgia Institute of Technology. His research interests include leadership, followership, motivation, citizenship, and individual differences. James holds a Dean’s Fellowship supporting his doctoral studies at Georgia Tech. He was named one of the Faculty of the Year (2012-2013) recipients at Georgia Tech’s Scheller College of Business, as the Teaching PhD Candidate of the Year. The title of Lemoine’s research project is “An Impact Beyond the Team: The Cross-level and Extra-organizational Effects of Servant Leadership.”

Mulyadi Robin is a final year PhD candidate in the Department of Management, Faculty of Business and Economics, Monash University. Robin is currently a recipient of the Monash University Faculty Postgraduate Research Scholarship, and previously was the recipient of Monash University Honours Bursary and Teaching Scholarship, as well as the Monash University Thesis Publication Scholarship. Mulyadi is also currently an experienced Teaching Associate at Monash University, having lectured and tutored undergraduate subjects across three different Monash Campuses (Caulfield, Clayton, and Berwick). The title of Robin’s research project is “Leadership, Engagement, and Workplace Behavior.”

2012 Scholars

Karoline Evans is a Ph.D. student at Washington University in St. Louis where she is completing her degree in organizational behavior. She has particular interest in leadership and team innovation and is currently researching how organizations can use leader and culture development to affect the personal and professional lives of their employees. She also investigates the role of social networks in team and individual innovation. She completed a bachelor’s in chemical engineering from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Before pursuing a doctoral degree, Karoline had a career in research and development at a large consulting firm where she specialized in technology strategy and innovation management. She will be conducting research with Markus Baer of Washington University in St. Louis and Christopher Long of Georgetown University on “The Effects of Employee Training in Servant Leadership on Follower Growth, Empowerment, and Performance.”

Chenwei Liao was born and raised in China. After completing a bachelor’s degree in sociology at Renmin University of China in Beijing, he came to the United States and obtained his master’s degree in industrial and organizational psychology from Illinois Institute of Technology. He is now pursuing a doctoral degree in organizational behavior and human resource management (OB/HRM) at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC). Chenwei has conducted research on the effects of servant leadership, leader-member exchange, and employment relationships on employee and organizational outcomes. His research has been accepted for presentation at academic conferences such as the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology (SIOP) annual conferences and the Industrial-Organizational Psychology and Organizational Behavior conferences. Also, his coauthored research projects has received recognition and funding from organizations such as the Society for Human Resource Management Foundation and the Center for Human Resource Management (CHRM) at the University of Illinois. His research topic is “Towards an Understanding of Servant Leadership Climate.”

2011 Scholars

Ivan Butar Butar’s research project is “The Relationship between Servant Leadership and Organizational Citizenship Behavior: Evidence from Indonesia.” Butar Butar is a PhD candidate at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia, where he is completing his degree in Organization Studies. He is also the recipient of the 2008 Australian Leadership Award Scholarship awarded by the Australian Government for future leaders in the Asia-Pacific region. He is currently a management consultant at Lembaga Management in Jakarta, Indonesia, where he has consulted with many world-renowned organizations.

Jeremy D. Meuser is a PhD candidate at the University of Illinois at Chicago where he is completing his degree in Managerial Studies. The topic of his research “The Combined Effect of Servant Leadership and Follower Servant Leadership Prototype on Employee Engagement and Team Performance.” He has a particular interest in how a leader can be a source of positive experiences that contribute to the well-being of individuals in the workplace. Before pursuing his doctoral degree, he had a career in information technology with internships, teaching experience, and the role of a founding partner for an IT limited liability corporation in Michigan. He has also completed a certificate in spirituality from Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska and a degree in philosophy at Sacred Heart Major Seminary in Detroit, Michigan.

Travis Searle’s research project is “Servant Leadership Characteristics: An Indirect Effect on Employees’ Proactive Work Behavior via Psychological Empowerment.” Searle is a PhD candidate at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln where he is completing his degree in Leadership Studies. He is currently an instructor and graduate research assistant at the University of Nebraska and has also been a visiting instructor in the religion department at Brigham Young University. He has a particular interest in servant leadership, positive behavior, leadership development, and multilevel modeling. Before pursuing his doctoral degree, he taught religion to high school students. Searle received his Masters in Education from Weber State University.

2010 Scholars

Dr. Alexandra Panaccio of the University of Illinois at Chicago, will research “How Do Servant-Leaders Influence Employee Well-Being and Performance? The Mediating Role of Employee Commitment and Motivation.” Alexandra Panaccio was born and raised in Montreal, Canada. She completed a bachelor’s in law at University of Montreal, and obtained in a Masters in Business Administration and a doctorate in human resources and organizational behavior at HEC Montreal. She is currently conducting post-doctoral research at the University of Illinois at Chicago.

Dr. Nicholas Bowman of the University of Notre Dame, whose research topic is “Creating Effective Servant-Leaders: College Experiences and the Development of Values and Accompanying Attributes of Servant Leadership.” Nicholas A. Bowman is a postdoctoral research associate in the Center for Social Concerns at the University of Notre Dame. He graduated summa cum laude with a B.A. in Psychology from UCLA. He attended graduate school at the University of Michigan, where he received two master’s degrees in Education, a graduate certificate in Culture and Cognition, and a Ph.D. in an individually-designed interdepartmental program in Social Psychology and Higher Education.

Kae (Kristen) Reynolds of Gonzaga University, who will research “Servant Leadership and the Ethic of Care: An Exploration of Correlations and Gender.” Kae Reynolds is a Ph.D. student as well as a teaching and graduate assistant in the Department of Leadership Studies. She attended the University of Iowa as a Presidential Scholar. After a year abroad in Moscow from 1988-1989 and completion of her secondary teacher certification, Kae graduated Summa Cum Laude with a B.A. and honors in Russian. She earned her Master’s degree in Organizational Leadership at Saint Ambrose University.

Jia Hu of the University of Illinois at Chicago, who will research “A Team-Level Social Exchange Model of Servant Leadership and Team Effectiveness.” Jia is currently a doctoral candidate in Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management. She received her M.A. in Human Resource Management from the Renmin University of China, and her B.A. in Business Administration from the Central University of Economics and Finance.

2009 Scholars

The title of Mr. Beck’s research project is “Antecedents of Servant Leadership: A Mixed Methods Study.” Curt is currently a Ph.D. Candidate in Human Sciences at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln specializing in Leadership Studies. His background includes extensive experience developing, implementing, and administering educational and training programs to improve personal and organizational effectiveness. Because of his expertise in workforce issues, Curt was appointed by Governor Mike Johanns to serve on the Nebraska Workforce Development Board. He also served as the Deputy Commissioner of the Nebraska Department of Labor, where he was responsible for managing the organizational and strategic initiatives for a state agency with 22 offices and 500 employees. Curt lives in Lincoln, Nebraska with his wife and son.

The title of Dr. Bobbio’s research project is “The Servant Leadership Inventory: Validation in the Italian context and effects of servant leadership on individual and organizational variables.” Dr. Bobbio obtained his Ph.D. in Personality and Social Psychology at the University of Padua in 2005. His research project dealt with the Social Identity Theory of Leadership and leading change. During his Ph.D. program, he spent four months as a visiting researcher at the Rotterdam School of Management in Erasmus University, Rotterdam, The Netherlands. He has a particular interest in innovative theories of leadership, how individuals and small groups behave at work, and the interplay between organizational efficiency and job satisfaction. He has had experience in correlational and experimental studies, in supervising students for graduation theses, and in teaching.

The title of Dr. Reed’s research project is “Emergency (9-1-1) Dispatchers as Servant-Leaders among Us.” Dr. Reed is an Assistant Professor of Management at Eckerd College. She holds a Ph.D. in Organization and Management and a Certificate in Training and Development from Capella University. Her dissertation examined the Big Five personality traits and servant leadership characteristics as factors in retention of 9-1-1 telecommunicators. Her dissertation was published as a monograph, Personality and Leadership as Dispatcher Retention Tools, in December of 2008. Lora has written numerous articles and delivered many presentations on various aspects of servant leadership in organizations. She has successfully written workforce development grants totaling over one million dollars and has worked with Florida Workforce Boards to integrate service-learning as a strategy for workforce, employee, organizational, and community development. She resides in Bradenton, Florida with her husband, Dana.