Isabel Botero, Sarah Snyder and Jocelyn Deamer of the UofL Family Business Center are among the 2021 Rechter Fellows.
Isabel Botero, Sarah Snyder and Jocelyn Deamer of the UofL Family Business Center are among the 2021 Rechter Fellows.

The second cohort of Sam and Bonnie Rechter Fellows has been selected to conduct research on positive leadership. Five projects that support the development of virtue and excellence in leadership have been awarded funding and fellowship designation as part of the project.

This is the second year the project has provided five grants of up to $5,000 each to be used for research or to develop instructional tools that focus on positive leadership. The grants are funded by a donation from the Sam and Bonnie Rechter Family Trust.

“Positive leadership begins with actions that exhibit virtue with more excellence than a person would have exhibited if she had conformed to convention,” said Ryan Quinn, associate professor of management and academic director of the Project on Positive Leadership. “These projects each address a specific need for better understanding the characteristics and behaviors that result in positive leadership.”

The 2021 Rechter Fellows and their projects:

  • Brad Shuck, associate professor and program director in the Human Resource and Organizational Development Program of the UofL College of Education and Human Development, and Rajashi Ghosh, associate professor of human resource development and chair of the Department of Policy, Organization and Leadership in School of Education at Drexel University: Shuck and Ghosh will develop the Compassionate Coaching Leader Index (CCLI) by assessing how effective leaders avoid compassion fatigue, providing insights about how leader development programs could be framed around the lens of positive leadership through compassion.
  • Isabel C. Botero, director of the UofL Family Business Center in the College of Business and associate professor of entrepreneurship, Jocelyn Deamer, program coordinator for the Family Business Center, and Sarah Snyder, intern in the Family Business Center: The researchers will explore how family businesses engage in positive leadership and inspire family and non-family employees and increase understanding of the role that family business members have in the well-being of the community.
  • Dejun (Tony) Kong, associate professor in management at the University of South Florida’s Muma College of Business: Kong will develop measures for students and practitioners to assess self-awareness, social mindfulness and a virtuous mindset in relation to ethical leadership.
  • Katherine (Kat) K. Bae, PhD candidate at the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan: Bae proposes that engaging in positive leadership can be energizing and beneficial for the leaders themselves. Her project will focus on the responsibility of effective leaders in motivating followers to explore the question: When and why do positive leadership behaviors increase leaders’ own subsequent energy and motivation?
  • Lauren Locklear, PhD candidate at the University of Central Florida: Locklear’sproject will examine the relationship between supervisors’ expressed appreciation and subordinates’ felt appreciation and suggest a feedback intervention to reduce or eliminate the tendency for people to overestimate the extent to which others can discern their internal states, understand their expressions and comprehend their communications.

The grants are awarded for the 2021 calendar year. Instructional tools developed or research conducted through the Rechter Fellowships will be made available for distribution through the Project on Positive Leadership to help advance its mission.

Encouraging virtues in leadership is the fundamental goal of the Project on Positive Leadership, an interdisciplinary unit housed in the University of Louisville College of Business. The project was founded to conduct research and to create and disseminate teaching tools for positive leadership, support research within the field and collaborate with other units within our university and other organizations throughout the region and beyond who embrace similar missions.