Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Education (Ed.D.)


Administrative and Instructional Leadership

First Advisor

James Campbell


This qualitative research examined how styles of leadership can impact the process of philanthropy for higher education. Effective leadership can aid in the successful transformation of organizations, influence donors, and implement change. In recent years, higher education has evolved from being an altruistic source of learning to becoming a source of income to advance an institution. Philanthropic funding for higher education can serve to assist researchers, labs, buildings, theaters, athletic stadiums, and endowments. The organizations included in this study were three community colleges within the State University of New York (SUNY) system. Research data were collected via interviews of the executive directors of the foundations and donors at each respective institution. In addition, subsequent observations as well as artifacts were used to triangulate the research data. Data analysis explored thematic connections linking leadership style and philanthropic success within the organizations. Raising funds to aid a college/university can be historic in its efforts in philanthropy, and those in leadership roles are essential. This study examined which style of leadership can be most effective.