Leading from the Margins: College Leadership from Unexpected Places


Today’s book is: Leading From the Margins: College Leadership from Unexpected Places (Johns Hopkins UP, 2024), by Dr. Mary Dana Hinton, which is a guide to why people from marginalized backgrounds may be uniquely qualified to become effective higher education leaders―and how they can get there. Students and faculty in higher education increasingly reflect more diverse backgrounds, but this diversity remains rare in many leadership roles. In Leading from the Margins, Dr. Hinton celebrates the unique strengths of marginalized individuals, inviting them to embrace their leadership potential and make a difference. Drawing from Dr. Hinton's own journey to becoming a university president, this book challenges conventional leadership theories and highlights the value of diverse voices. This book is a vital resource for people in higher education aspiring to senior leadership positions who feel unheard or unrepresented in traditional leadership roles. Leading from the Margins is an essential read for anyone seeking to foster inclusive and effective leadership, bridging the gap between theory and lived experiences. Whether you're an emerging or established leader, Leading from the Margins will empower you to find your own leadership style and discover strength in unexpected places.

Our guest is: Dr. Mary Dana Hinton, who is the 13th president of Hollins University. An active and respected proponent of the liberal arts and inclusion, her leadership reflects a deep and abiding commitment to educational equity and the education of women. Dr. Hinton was elected to the American Academy of Arts & Sciences, an organization established more than 240 years ago by the nation’s founders to honor exceptionally accomplished individuals and engage them in advancing the public good. Her scholarship focuses on higher education leadership, strategic planning, the role of education in peace building, African American religious history, and inclusion in higher education. She is the author of The Commercial Church: Black Churches and the New Religious Marketplace in America, and of Leading from the Margins: College Leadership from Unexpected Places.

Our host is: Dr. Christina Gessler, the producer of the Academic Life podcast. She holds a PhD in history, which she uses to explore what stories we tell and what happens to those we never tell.

Welcome to Academic Life, the podcast for your academic journey—and beyond! Join us again to learn from more experts inside and outside the academy, and around the world. You can support the show by downloading and sharing episodes.

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Christina Gessler

Dr. Christina Gessler is the creator, show host, and producer of the Academic Life podcast. She holds a PhD in U.S. history.
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