Date of Conferral



Doctor of Business Administration (D.B.A.)


Business Administration


Julia East


Formal succession planning strategies for retiring Baby Boomer generation of leaders in nonprofit organizations (NPOs) are nonexistent in many NPOs, including faith-based NPOs. Top NPO leaders possess vital organizational knowledge and experience. The lack of strategic succession planning adversely affects organizational sustainability and mission fulfillment. Guided by the conceptual framework of knowledge transfer, the current study supplies a description of succession planning strategies used in faith-based organizations that have Boomer leaders. This multiple case study included 3 faith-based NPOs in Miami-Dade and Broward Counties in Florida and their top-level leaders. They supplied descriptions of formal succession planning strategies through semistructured interviews and through related organizational documents. An inductive analysis of the data revealed that (a) key leaders were the initiators for developing a strategic plan for succession, (b) boards of directors were critical to the process, and (c) leadership transition, planned or unplanned, required preparation and documented policies that must be reviewed at regular intervals. Leadership development is a valuable practice, which contributes to succession planning strategy. Influential leaders and board members of NPOs may receive inspiration to engage in succession planning strategies to maintain capable and prepared leaders at the top levels of the organizations as a means to ensure organizational sustainability and mission fulfillment. Positive social change happens in communities by encouraging a positive societal culture and identity through uninterrupted NPO services and programs. Improving the lives of community members enhances the communities in which they live.