Date of Conferral



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


Business Administration


Jamie A. Patterson


Surveys of nonprofit organizations conducted between 2004 and 2014 showed that 74% of the 6,923 leaders surveyed did not have a succession plan. In this qualitative single case study, the human capital theory was used as a guide to explore strategies used to implement a succession plan by 3 nonprofit leaders in a single nonprofit organization in a large metropolitan city in Southeastern Georgia. The participants were selected based on their implementation of succession plan strategies and geographical location. Semistructured interviews and document review were used to collect the data, which were analyzed using Yin's 5-step approach. Three themes emerged: investments in human capital, evaluation metrics, and organizational structure. The findings of this study related to succession planning in nonprofit organizations is expected to contribute to positive social change in nonprofit organizations by creating organizational continuity and sustainability, which extends to the communities and individuals served.