Rich Whitney

Faculty and Affiliate

Dr. Rich Whit­ney is an Asso­ciate Pro­fes­sor and Pro­gram Direc­tor in the Orga­ni­za­tion­al Lead­er­ship Doc­tor­al Pro­gram at the Uni­ver­si­ty of La Verne in South­ern Cal­i­for­nia. He teach­es cours­es in the first and third years of the pro­gram course­work. His first-year cours­es focus on per­son­al lead­er­ship through assess­ments, con­scious­ness of self and lead­er­ship the­o­ry. Third year cours­es include pro­gram devel­op­ment and dis­ser­ta­tion prepa­ra­tion. Dr. Whitney’s inter­est and research in when one iden­ti­fies as a leader, the­o­ry and pro­gram devel­op­ment. Dr. Whit­ney also teach­es in the Social Jus­tice in High­er Edu­ca­tion Master’s pro­gram. Pre­vi­ous­ly he was a pro­fes­sor in the coun­sel­ing-col­lege stu­dent devel­op­ment pro­gram at DePaul Uni­ver­si­ty in Chica­go. Pri­or to the pro­fes­so­rate, his high­er edu­ca­tion expe­ri­ence includes the Uni­ver­si­ty of Neva­da, in his home­town of Reno. He worked in Res­i­den­tial Life, Fra­ter­ni­ty and Soror­i­ty advis­ing, lead­er­ship pro­grams, and stu­dent affairs. He served as the Assis­tant Direc­tor for Man­age­ment and Lead­er­ship Pro­grams for the Neva­da Extend­ed Stud­ies program.

He has been train­ing, facil­i­tat­ing, and speak­ing to groups on lead­er­ship for over 25 years. His approach is from the under­stand­ing that the class­room is a con­ver­sa­tion with the stu­dents that respects the com­bined knowl­edge in the room build from the com­bined ener­gy of expe­ri­ence on the top­ic. As a pro­po­nent of expe­ri­en­tial learn­ing the­o­ry, he believes that learn­ing is a func­tion of relearn­ing based on pre­vi­ous expe­ri­ence and actions. Rich con­ducts sem­i­nars at var­i­ous venues includ­ing on-cam­pus, cor­po­ra­tions, and non-prof­it orga­ni­za­tions. His research, writ­ing, speak­ing, and pre­sen­ta­tions include the top­ics of lead­er­ship, lead­er­ship devel­op­ment, lead­er­ship edu­ca­tion, teamwork/collaboration, brain-based learn­ing, and pro­gram devel­op­ment. His research inter­ests include the phe­nom­e­nol­o­gy of lead­er­ship, brain-based learn­ing, and pro­gram development.

Dr. Whit­ney has con­duct­ed research using the method­olo­gies of quan­ti­ta­tive, qual­i­ta­tive, and mixed meth­ods. His mis­sion is to research and the­o­ry into work­ing knowl­edge that influ­ence the way we teach, learn, work, and lead. His ear­ly work exam­in­ing the phe­nom­e­nol­o­gy of leader iden­ti­ty is pre­sent­ed in a vari­ety of for­mats includ­ing, What Neva­da lead­ers say about the lead­er­ship process

Dr. Whitney’s aware­ness of this thing called lead­er­ship began as a leader in the Hon­or Soci­ety for the Boy Scouts of Amer­i­ca in his late teens. Return­ing to the pro­gram of inter­est he began work­ing with the Boy Scouts in 2016. He was the prin­ci­pal lead­er­ship schol­ar to the task force to review and refresh the Nation­al Lead­er­ship Sem­i­nar. He serves as the Nation­al NLS Con­tent Lead Advis­er for the pro­gram. He has pre­sent­ed at inter­na­tion­al lead­er­ship con­fer­ences and is prep­ping mul­ti­ple research arti­cles sur­round­ing this work. As a result of this work Dr. Whit­ney was recruit­ed to work with the adult based Devel­op­ing Youth Lead­ers Conference.

In 2019 Dr. Whit­ney was asked to cre­ate a lead­er­ship pro­gram for the 24th World Scout Jam­boree involv­ing 49,000 Scouts from around the world. The GLOBE was attend­ed by more than 5,500 par­tic­i­pants and lead­er­ship was taught through expe­ri­ence, videos, escape rooms, and guid­ed dis­cus­sions. In 2021 Dr. Whit­ney will devel­op a pro­gram to present lead­er­ship, engage­ment, new mem­ber acti­va­tion, and recruit­ment at the Nation­al Scout Jam­boree for BSA members.