Authentic Leadership 2012 Cohort

About the Program


The Authentic Leadership Program was developed in 2000 by Susan Skjei, MS, MA, PCC, former Vice President of Human Resource Development and Chief Learning Officer at Storage Tek and adjunct faculty member in the Graduate Environmental Leadership Program at Naropa University. In addition to Susan, the original faculty members were Fred Kofman, PhD; Barb Lawton, PhD; Micki McMillan, MA; and Mark Wilding, MA. The program has been offered at Naropa University during the spring semester each year in Boulder since 2001 and once in the fall semester at the Garrison Institute in New York in 2006.

The program, which is updated every year, incorporates theory and practices from business, human development and leadership authors, including Juanita Brown, Pema Chödrön, Jim Collins, Glenda Eyong, Bill George, Mark Gerzon, Daniel Goleman, Joe Jaworski, Adam Kahane, Robert Kegan, Fred Kofman, John Kotter, Lisa Laskow Lahey, Sakyong Mipham, Julio Olalla, Otto Scharmer, Peter Senge, Chögyam Trungpa, Ken Wilber, Meg Wheatley, and Brenda Zimmerman.


The primary teacher/facilitator has been Susan Skjei with assistance from many guest faculty over the years including Zoe Avstreih (Authentic Movement), Juana Bordas (Salsa, Soul and Spirit), Steve Demos (Right Livlihood), Barbara Dilley (Contemplative Movement), Mark Gerzon (Conflict Resolution), Arawana Hayashi (Embodiment Practice), Fred Kofman (Conscious Business), Barb Lawton (Leading Change), Julio Olalla (Authenticity and Emotional Intelligence), Jim Marsden (Theory U), Mikki McMillan (Commitment Conversations), Dan Montgomery (Balanced Scorecard), Laura Simms (Storytelling), Tami Simon (Contemplative Entrepreneurship), Mark Wilding (Transforming Systems), and Bob Wing (Leadership Aikido). See this year's Authentic Leadership Faculty.


More than five hundred people have graduated from the program since it began in 2001. Most courses have had thirty to forty-five attendees. Participants have been leaders or aspiring leaders from small businesses, large corporations, nonprofits, government agencies, as well as some coaches and consultants and university staff and faculty. The age range of former participants has been 21–63.  The program has consistently received high ratings on participant evaluations (average of 4.5 out of 5)