Who Should Attend

Foundations of Christian Leadership benefits those who care about the church in the world and want to build skills to lead Christian institutions with joy and creativity.

Over the years, we have had lay and clergy leaders from a variety of faith-based organizations participate. Ideal applicants are those who have been in a leadership position in a Christian institution for fewer than five years. Participants in Foundations typically work in one of the following environments:

  • A faith-based nonprofit
  • A denomination
  • A Christian seminary or college
  • Community-oriented ministry in a church

If leaders with more than five years’ experience apply, they should be working on new projects or have an expanded scope of responsibility and be seeking ways to sustain key activities over time.

Applicants should express a desire to:

  • Hone their leadership voice
  • Engage in “balcony time,” a time to disconnect and reflect
  • Examine current systems and structures of their work
  • Collaborate and recognize others’ gifts, strengths and resources
  • Imagine alternative models that embrace innovation
  • Build community in different spaces and hear different voices

Applicants’ ministry context must be based in the United States. We are unable to accept applicants based outside of the United States.

All individuals, regardless of their educational background, are welcome to apply; however, applicants should not be enrolled in an academic program at the time of applying.

If applications are not yet open, please sign up for our mailing list to receive a notification when the application is live.


Know someone who would benefit from Foundations of Christian Leadership? Let us know by filling out the form below.



The idea of traditioned innovation — one of the core concepts of Leadership Education at Duke Divinity — particularly resonated with Sushama Austin-Connor, who took part in Foundations of Christian Leadership in 2013.

Questions We Answer

We know that you grapple with many difficult questions as a Christian leader. We want to help. Complex concerns about ministry can’t be fully addressed here, of course, but we provide a starting point for engaging the deep issues.

Learn More »