How can you become a more authentic leader? How can you effectively enhance your power and influence? What can design thinking teach you about building strong LGBT and ally networks?

The LGBT Executive Leadership Program gives you the strategic insights, personal leadership skills, and powerful network to accelerate your career. This is the only Executive Education program of its kind offered by a leading business school to address the significant gap in leadership for lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, and transgender people in the C-suite.

Price subject to change. Program tuition includes private accommodations, all meals, and course materials.


Lead with strength. Lead with impact. The LGBT Executive Leadership Program teaches you how to do both. Authentically. Effectively. Confidently. This highly-specialized, one-week program combines personal leadership assessments and insights with design thinking innovation.

Best of all, you’ll share this experience with other LGBT executives and build a powerful and personal network to support you and your career for a lifetime, wherever in the world your career takes you.

Your week will be filled with interactive classroom sessions, hands-on experiential workshops, small group discussions, roundtable forums, and guest speakers. All in a stimulating environment on the Stanford campus, led by world-class Graduate School of Business faculty. It all starts with a pre-program leadership assessment and on-campus debrief to guide your own personal development. Explore the art of influence and decision making. Discover how mindsets can drive innovation. Learn how to transform insights into outcomes. Build new allies as you help shape the direction of your organization. Share best practices and capture your learnings to extend the experience to your organization and support the next generation of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender leaders.

Faculty Directors
Faculty/Guest Speakers
Sarah A. Soule

Sarah A. Soule is the Morgridge Professor of Organizational Behavior at Stanford Graduate School of Business and Professor of Sociology (by courtesy), School of Humanities and Sciences. She has taught courses with the Stanford and is also Faculty Director for the Executive Program on Social Entrepreneurship.

Sarah A. Soule

Thomas S. Wurster is a Lecturer in Management at Stanford Graduate School of Business.  He is a former Senior Partner and Managing Director with The Boston Consulting Group (BCG), a leading global management consulting firm, where he most recently led the West Coast. He has more than thirty-five years of experience consulting to leading companies with a specialization in technology and media. Mr. Wurster is coauthor of the book Blown to Bits (The Harvard Business School Press, 2000) on how digital technologies change business strategy.  Mr. Wurster received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics and Mathematics with distinction from Cornell University, received his Master of Business Administration degree with honors from the University of Chicago, and received his Doctor of Philosophy degree in Economics from Yale University.  He is also an Adjunct Professor of Strategy at the UCLA Anderson School of Management.  

Eugene D. O'Kelly II Senior Lecturer in Leadership, Emeritus

Executive Chairman, L1 Energy

Voted Most Admired CEO by Management Today and knighted in 1998, Lord Browne is author of The Glass Closet, a commentary on the acceptance and inclusion of LGBT people in business.

Professor of Organizational Behavior (by courtesy); Professor of Sociology, School of Humanities and Sciences; Barbara D. Finberg Director, Michelle R. Clayman Institute for Research on Gender

Lecturer in Organizational Behavior

Lecturer in Organizational Behavior

Moghadam Family Professor of Leadership and Organizational Behavior; Codirector of the Executive Program for Women Leaders

Lecturer in Organizational Behavior

Co-Founder, Socos

Having undergone a gender transition, Dr. Ming has the unique experience of engaging in the professional world as both a male and female theoretical neuroscientist, technologist, and entrepreneur. This experience has provided her a valuable perspective on issues of inclusion and human potential.

MBA Class of 1978 Lecturer in Organizational Behavior

Jeff Sheng is an American artist whose photographic work involves the visualization of LGBT communities. His photo series Fearless, about LGBT student athletes, has been seen at over 70 different venues since 2006, and his series, Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell (2009-2011), about closeted United States military service members, was profiled in 2010 by the New York Times, ABC World NewsTonight, and CNN, among other places. Jeff is a currently PhD candidate in the department of sociology at Stanford University.

Sanwa Bank, Limited, Professor of Marketing; Director of the Strategic Marketing Management Executive Program; Director of The Innovative CIO Executive Program

Robert A. and Elizabeth R. Jeffe Professor of Organizational Behavior; Professor of Sociology (by courtesy), School of Humanities and Sciences; Faculty Director, Stanford Institute for Innovation in Developing Economies; Susan Ford Dorsey Faculty Fellow for 2014-2015

Jonathan B. Lovelace Professor of Organizational Behavior; Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs; Director of the Executive Program in Leadership: The Effective Use of Power

Video Introduction
LGBT Executive Leadership Program
“Through an immediate strengthening of their skill sets, particularly around topics like power, authenticity [and], authority, participants will also benefit immediately from a network of peers, and faculty members, and mentors.” – Tom Wurster

Join faculty codirectors Sarah A. Soule and Tom Wurster to hear more about how this unique program is designed to impact participants, and organizations.

The LGBT Executive Leadership Program will help you:

  • Learn how your LGBT identity influences and strengthens your personal leadership style
  • Assess and refine your interpersonal skills to become a more authentic leader
  • Develop new models and mindsets for innovation using design thinking
  • Strengthen non-verbal and verbal communication skills
  • Think, prepare, and act globally
  • Identify best practices for building LGBT employee networks and career paths within your organization
  • Build a strong network of LGBT peers with whom you can share ideas and experiences


This presentation describes an approach to power and influence that involves getting out of your head and into your body. Many people assume that the best way to have impact is to focus on demonstrating intelligence and perfecting the quality of their arguments. Yet research shows that argument quality has little effect on who is most influential in organizations. Instead, people tend to defer to others based largely on non-verbal dynamics and body language. Classroom learning will draw on 20 years of research into the psychology of power, plus insights from acting and the theater, to illuminate the specific physical actions and dynamics that are associated with having power and influence.

Design thinking—a human-centered, prototype-driven process for innovation—can be applied to product, service, and even business and organizational design. We believe that innovation is necessary in every aspect of business, and that it can be taught. You will first have the opportunity to experience how the design thinking process works in a hands-on exercise. Then, small teams will work together to craft solutions to different design challenges around creating and/or strengthening LGBT networks within and across organizations.

Who Should Attend?

LGBT Executive Leadership Program is ideal for LGBT executives preparing to take on more significant leadership roles. It’s specifically designed for:

  • Mid- to senior-level executives with a minimum of 10 years of professional experience and 5 years of management experience
  • Executives with significant levels of managerial responsibility—from any size company, any industry, and any country
The Stanford LGBT Executive Leadership Program provides an opportunity to join a first-of-its-kind, very high quality, global, business-focused LGBT network of leaders. By design, this program will build peer-to-peer connections among these leaders during the weeklong program...and beyond.
Tom Wurster
Faculty Codirector
We know that the first year of the program will be foundational to its development, so first-year attendees will look back with pride in ten years at a unique program and powerful network that they helped to shape and launch.
Tom Wurster
Faculty Codirector
This program will help you understand how your LGBT identity impacts and enhances your leadership style, giving you invaluable insights, both personally and professionally. Additionally, the program will expose you to Design Thinking in a hands-on exercise focused on developing innovations to accelerate your internal and external LGBT networks.
Sarah Soule
Faculty Codirector


Stanford University
The Stanford campus is world renowned for its natural beauty, Spanish mission-style architecture, and temperate climate. With more than 8,180 acres (3,310 hectares), Stanford's campus ranks as one of the largest in the United States. Participants in Stanford's Executive Programs become part of a quintessential university setting, residing together, walking or biking to classes, and enjoying access to Stanford University facilities.
The Knight Management Center
Opened in spring 2011, the Knight Management Center has transformed the Stanford Graduate School of Business into a vibrant and unified indoor-outdoor, living and learning community. Participants will take classes at this new state-of-the-art campus, which features tiered classrooms with extensive floor-to-ceiling glass, the latest in audiovisual technology, numerous breakout and study rooms, outdoor seating areas to encourage informal discussion, and an open collaboration lab that employs hands-on and design thinking techniques.
Schwab Residential Center
Designed by renowned Mexican architect, Ricardo Legorreta, the Schwab Residential Center gives residents ample privacy while promoting collegial interaction through shared lounges, outdoor meeting areas, a library, and an exercise room.


Lisa Blair
Associate Director, Programs and Marketing
Phone: +1.650.736.8473

The Stanford Difference

The Place: Immerse yourself in innovation.
The Experience: Transform your thinking, your career, your company.
The Approach: Challenge yourself with research-based learning and real-world experience.