Master of Leadership Development, Leadership in Action Series

Leadership Awakenings: Is there a leader in you?

Presenter Bios

Neil Bryant
, MLD, is currently the vice president of sales development for Carestream Health Inc., a $2.6b global company providing imaging and information management technologies and services that aid health care providers in the treatment of their patients. Neil has spent nearly 30 years assisting hospitals and healthcare systems in achieving their strategic, business and patient care objectives through effective use of technology and related services. In his current role, Neil leads the effort to develop the performance of the company’s sales force in the US and Canada to reach both customer and internal goals. He has lectured on leadership and communications in business at MIT, Penn State's Graduate School, the Hult International MBA Program, and The University of Pittsburgh. Neil earned his bachelor of arts (BA) in business administration from Gettysburg College, and his Master of Leadership Development (MLD) from Penns State. Near home, he is member of the board of directors of The United Way of Chester County, a member of the advisory committee for the Department of Leadership Studies at Immaculata University, and a past board president of The Friends Association for Care and Protection of Children (West Chester, Pa.). In service to Gettysburg College, Neil is a member of the advisory council for The Garthwait Leadership Center, and has served as the chair of The Orange & Blue Athletic Advisory Council.

William A. (Bill) Gentry, Ph.D., is currently an enterprise associate/research scientist at the Center for Creative Leadership (CCL) , coordinator of internships and postdocs at CCL, and also an adjunct assistant professor in the Leadership Studies doctoral program at North Carolina A&T State University, the Psychology department at Guilford College, the Organizational Sciences doctoral program at the University of North Carolina, Charlotte, and in the Business School at Wake Forest University. Bill graduated summa cum laude from Emory University, received his M.S. and his Ph.D. in Industrial-Organizational Psychology from the University of Georgia, and was also a postdoctoral fellow at CCL. Before coming to CCL, Bill was an organizational effectiveness specialist at United Parcel Service. Bill's research interests are in multisource (360) research, survey development and analysis, leadership and leadership development across cultures, mentoring, managerial derailment, multilevel measurement, and in the area of organizational politics and political skill in the workplace. He also studies nonverbal behavior and its application to effective leadership and communication, particularly in political debates. He has published in such journals as the Journal of Applied Psychology, Journal of Organizational Behavior, Journal of Vocational Behavior, Personnel Psychology, Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, Leadership Quarterly, Journal of Leadership Studies, and the European Journal of Work and Organizational Psychology. He serves on the editorial review boards of the Journal of Business and Psychology, the Journal of Organizational Behavior and The Leadership Quarterly. Bill has been a contributor to on the nonverbal behaviors of candidates in the 2008 presidential and vice presidential debates and of President Obama's inaugural address. In addition, his research on political skill and derailment in the workplace has been featured in more than 40 internet and newspaper outlets. Aside from his research, Bill also trains CCL's Assessment Certification Workshop and Maximizing Your Leadership Potential. Bill has also been honored as part of the inaugural class of the University of Georgia's 40 under 40, as one of 40 graduates of the University of Georgia under the age of 40 to have made an impact in business, leadership, community, educational and/or philanthropic endeavors, demonstrating dedication to the University of Georgia and its mission of teaching, research and service; and representing the very best of UGA graduates.

Wallace E. Jones Jr., MLD, is the Maintenance of Certification (MOC) Part IV coordinator for the American Board of Ophthalmology (ABO) in which he leads continuous process improvement among ophthalmologists through the use of the ABO Part IV Practice Improvement platform he helped develop. His diverse background includes a mix of training and development, information technology, and leadership development experience. His interests in employee engagement and diversity leadership have allowed him to conduct 360 degree evaluations of top executives and co-develop an on-boarding curriculum that led to the successful placement of over 400 employees. Wallace received his Master of Leadership Development degree from Penn State in 2007.

Leslie Smurthwaite, MLD, SPHR, is employed by Iron Mountain as a senior human resource business partner responsible for the Eastern United States and Canada regions. Leslie's career spans 20 years in the pharmaceutical, technology, and insurance industries and has included roles such as director of college relations and assistant vice president, staffing. Leslie earned her Master of Leadership Development degree from Penn State in 2012 and holds the Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) certification from HRCI. She is also a member of Beta Gamma Sigma and the Society of Human Resources Management.  

John J. Sosik, Ph.D., is professor of management and organization, research fellow in the Consortium for Sustainable Business Development, and professor-in-charge of the Master of Leadership Development program at Penn State Great Valley School of Graduate Professional Studies. He earned his Ph.D. in management specializing in organizational behavior and human resource management from the State University of New York at Binghamton. He teaches organizational behavior, leadership, research methods, and managerial accounting courses. He received the 2009 Group & Organization Management Award for Best Paper, the Center for Creative Leadership/Leadership Quarterly Award for best 2007 contribution, the 1999 Penn State Great Valley Award for Teaching Excellence, and the 1998 and 2006 Arthur L. Glenn Award for Faculty Innovation, and the 1997 and 2001 Penn State Great Valley Awards for Excellence in Research and Scholarship. John's research interests focus on effects of transformational and charismatic leadership on individuals, groups, and organizations, 360-degree feedback, group/team dynamics, and mentoring. He is an internationally recognized expert on charismatic/transformational leadership, having published 97 articles, proceedings, books, and book chapters, presented about 77 papers at academic conferences since 1995, conducted numerous training and organizational development programs, and serves on the editorial boards of The Leadership Quarterly, Group & Organization Management, and The Journal of Behavioral and Applied Management. His publications have appeared in management and social science journals including the Academy of Management Journal, Journal of Applied Psychology, Personnel Psychology, Decision Sciences, The Leadership Quarterly, Journal of Organizational Behavior, Journal of Vocational Behavior, Journal of Business Ethics, Management Communication Quarterly, Creativity Research Journal, Journal of Creative Behavior, Group & Organization Management, Group Dynamics, Small Group Research, Journal of Computer Information Systems, Computers in Human Behavior, Psychological Reports, Consulting Psychology Journal, Journal of Business & Psychology, Organizational Dynamics, Mentoring and Tutoring, Journal of Management Systems, Journal of Organizational and Leadership Studies, Leadership, Journal of Behavioral and Applied Management, and Journal of Economics and Business. His second book, Leading With Character: Stories of Valor and Virtue and the Principles They Teach (2006, Information Age Publishing), was named one of the 30 best business books of 2007 by Soundview Executive Book Summaries. John was awarded a grant from the National Science Foundation to study e-leadership of virtual teams at Unisys Corporation. He also is a certified public accountant in Pennsylvania and a certified management accountant.