Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


Executive Leadership


The purpose of this explanatory sequential mixed methods study was to examine correlations between the competencies of nonprofit CEOs in New York State and the financial sustainability of the organizations they lead. Nonprofit organizations face increasing demands for service (Norris-Tirrell, 2014) and fail to meet objectives because they fail to recruit and retain CEOs with the skills, education, and experience needed (Ahmed, 2005). The study examined what relationship, if any, exists between self-reported nonprofit CEO competencies and the financial sustainability of the organizations they lead. Nonprofit CEO competencies were measured using the identified Korn Ferry 4-D assessment (2015). Financial sustainability was measured using financial scoring matrixes (Cregin, 2015). The quantitative results of this study showed no relationship between the CEO competency scores and the financial sustainability of the studied organizations. However, four CEOs were also interviewed to extend understanding of the relationship between CEO skills and financial endurance. The qualitative results identified four themes: financial leadership and accountability, gaps in needed skills, motives to become a nonprofit CEO, and all about the board of directors. Recommendations from the study included examining the relationship between the board of directors and financial sustainability; and considering financial competence, and private sector experience when recruiting and preparing nonprofit CEOs.

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