Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


School of Education

First Advisor

Educational Leadership

Second Advisor

Copyright © 2014 Dale Ross Fisher

Third Advisor

Doctor of Education (EdD)


The dissertation examines the words and actions district superintendents used to lead an educational system through a culture shift following the occurrence of a scandalous critical incident. This qualitative study deeply investigated the specific words and actions as offered by the superintendents of two educational systems and members of their respective leadership teams. Those actions were then filtered through two lenses. The first lens was John Kotter's eight steps for change, and the second lens was Thomas Sergiovanni's five sources of authority. The study generated five themes of specific actions taken by the superintendents, determined that four of Kotter's eight steps for change were accomplished, and went on to successfully categorize each action taken based on one of Sergiovanni's five sources of authority.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.