Date of Award

Winter 1-12-2022

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Business Administration (DBA)

First Advisor

Grace Lemmon

Second Advisor

William Martin

Third Advisor

Alyssa Westring


Black, racialized minorities and Indigenous leaders (“BrmI”, Henry et al., 2017) in higher education are part of an elite group of educators. Less than 5% of full professors are Black and Hispanic (Taylor et al., 2020), and it is typically from this pool that academic leaders (e.g., Provost, Department Chair) are selected. Given this finite population, this research aims to understand one potential reason for lack of ascension into positions of power for academic leaders of color: the cost of that success. Through the lens of stigma and discrimination, I hypothesize that academic BrmI leaders consider the interpersonal and intrapersonal time-based cost of their career success to be greater than their White counterparts. That said, I also anticipate that the support that BrmI academic leaders accumulate – specifically, social, capital, and institutional support – may be perceived to lessen that overall cost. To test these hypotheses, over 100 tenured (or tenure-track) BrmI leaders in higher education were surveyed to evaluate their perception of the cost of success in comparison to their White counterparts, and 26 fully completed the survey. Important results include: BrmI leaders report that their work had greater costs to their family, friendships, community involvement, health, stress, self-care, and leisure than their White counterparts, and sponsor/coach/mentor support only partially stemmed this cost. The results can be used to assist in encouraging interventions to these costs to in turn increase the number of BrmI leadership roles in higher education.