Benedictine Leadership: Faculty & Advisory Councils


Michael R. Manning, Ph.D.

Director of Research; Professor of Leadership, Strategy & Change, and Core Faculty, (630) 829-6051

Dr. Michael R. Manning joined the Center’s faculty in 2013 as Professor of Leadership, Strategy & Change. Dr. Manning earned a Ph.D. from Purdue University and has held faculty appointments at New Mexico State University, Case Western Reserve University, Fielding Graduate University, and SUNY-Binghamton. He currently serves as an associate editor of the Journal of Applied Behavioral Science and is active in the Academy of Management, where he is a former Chair of the Organization Development and Change Division.

Dr. Manning has dedicated his professional career to educating and developing executives, designing effective organizations, and creating applied action research processes and intervention techniques. He teaches and consults throughout the U.S. and internationally in Mexico, Europe and the Baltic States, the Middle East, and the Far East.

Research interests: Multiple topics related to the management of change (whole systems change using large group interventions, the role of affect and emotion in change, identifying change moments); leading and collective action; occupational stress and well-being.

marie_divirglio_md-2Marie E. Di Virgilio, Ph.D.

Core Faculty, Organizational Change & Corporate Social Responsibility, (630) 829-2178

Dr. Marie E. Di Virgilio joined the Center in 2008 as Administrative Director. She brings over 30 years of business experience, much of it with Allstate Insurance Company, holding key leadership positions in sales, human resources, accounting, corporate education, and information technology. She earned a Ph.D. in Organization Development from Benedictine University in 2005.

Dr. Di Virgilio is a core faculty member specializing in Organizational Change and Corporate Social Responsibility at the Center and has held faculty appointments with Dominican University, the Lake Forest Graduate School of Management, the International School of Management and the U.S. State Department Middle East Partnership Initiative. She teaches internationally in Poland, the Czech Republic, and France. Consulting and speaking on a variety of topics including change management, teams, and leadership, Di Virgilio uses her scholar-practitioner skills to help organizations improve their effectiveness.

Dr. Di Virgilio is the Prospect Heights (IL) Dollars for Scholars board president. The mission of the organization is to provide local students with financial aid and support to pursue higher levels of academic achievement.

Research interests: Developing values-driven leaders; employee engagement; change leadership; work group transformation; social enterprise and responsibility.

jim_gustafson_md-2James “Gus” Gustafson, Ph.D.

Leadership Scholar-In-Residence; Core Faculty, Leadership Development, (515)577-0198

Dr. Gustafson was a founding Advisory Council member of the Center for Values-Driven Leadership, helped to co-create the Ph.D./D.B.A. Program, and formally joined the Center as the Leadership Scholar-in-Residence in 2009. Prior to joining Benedictine, he was Director of Strategic Leadership Research and Development and Organizational Transformation at U.S. Cellular, where he received many awards for his pioneering work in leadership development and organizational change. Gus also served for five years as Executive Minister, Chief Transformation Officer & Chief Ministry Officer at Lutheran Church of Hope in West Des Moines, Iowa (the largest and fastest growing Lutheran church in the world).

Gus has over thirty years of successful organization development, sales, marketing, operations, leadership development, channel management and executive leadership experience in public, private and non-profit organizations. He consults and speaks globally on a variety of topics and has been an invited Distinguished Visiting Scholar, Keynote Speaker and/or Leadership Consultant on six continents. Gus currently serves on the Editorial Boards of the Journal of Leadership Studies and the International Journal of Servant-Leadership, is a past Chair of the Business Leadership Division of the International Leadership Association, former Editor-in-Chief of the Organization Development Journal, and was the 2010, 2011 & 2012 recipient of the prestigious Global Strategic Leader Award given by the World HRD Congress.

Research interests: Servant leadership; self-transformation; legacy-driven leadership; organizational culture transformation; high-performing teams; human flourishing.

Joanna Beth Tweedy, Ph.D.

Lead Writing Faculty

Dr. Tweedy is the founding editor and host of Quiddity international journal and broadcast (NPR IL).  She serves in a consultant role as the lead writing faculty for the Center for Values-Driven Leadership’s executive doctoral program and also teaches at Western Governors University. She has presented widely throughout the United States and internationally on her research interests, which include flourishing, leadership, publishing, linguistic dialects, and writing. Publications include a novel and two book-length works on creative poiesis and leadership from (respectively) Southeast Missouri University Press, Benedictine University, and the University of Delhi; poems and short stories; as well as chapters and articles in publications related to leadership and creative craft.

With degrees in values-driven leadership (PhD), English (MA), and education (BS), Joanna Beth has served as faculty-in-residence at the University of Illinois, an Associate Professor of Arts & Letters, and a Dean of Academic Affairs at Benedictine University.

An ardent foreign-adventurist with chronic and gravitational home-soil leanings, Dr. Tweedy lives and loves in a foothilled fraction of the Ozarks steeped in the wonders of nature and the blessings of generations.