The Project

General facts about the Spears Center.

The Larry C. Spears Center for Servant-Leadership, is an exciting new venture of the longtime President & CEO (1990-2007) of The Robert K. Greenleaf Center for Servant-Leadership, Larry Spears. In addition, Larry Spears also teaches graduate courses in Servant-Leadership for Gonzaga University (Spokane, Washington).

Larry Spears - Spears Center for Servant Leadership

Goodness! You've accomplished a lot. Thank you, Larry, for continuing and enhancing the ideas of my old friend, Bob Greenleaf. You're a gentleman and scholar. And, thank you for your contributions to our society.

Warren Bennis, friend and author, On Leadership

Good friend and partner! Keep leaving a legacy. When we were born, our work was born with us. You're doing it well. You are a servant-leader trim tab. With love and adoration, and deep appreciation.

Stephen Covey, friend and author, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People

Find Out What Others are Saying


Speaking and Travel Schedule

Listed below is my past speaking and travel schedule. While speaking engagements are often closed to the general public, I am always happy to connect with supporters wherever I travel. I invite you to be in touch with me.

Travel Schedule and Presentations

Feb. 22, 2008 New Holland, Pennsylvania; Servant-Leadership Workshop
Feb. 29-March 1, 2008 Atlanta, Georgia; Policy Governance Workshop
April 2, 2008 Indianapolis, Indiana; IUPUI Servant-Leadership Presentation

May 5-6, 2008 Detroit, Michigan; Scanlon Leadership Conference
May 7, 2008 Detroit, Michigan; Scanlon Foundation Board Meeting

May 16-17, 2008 Virginia Beach, Virginia; Servant-Leadership Research Roundtable
June 5-7, 2008 Indianapolis, Indiana; Greenleaf Center Conference
July 4-8, 2008 Scotland, Travel/Research
July 9-12, 2008 Rotterdam, The Netherlands; Presentation, Servant-Leader Research Roundtable
July 24-25, 2008 Cincinnati, Ohio; Union Institute Board Meeting
October 30-31, 2008 Cincinnati, Ohio; Union Institute Board Meeting


Speaking of Servant Leadership

Larry is a frequent speaker on servant-leadership. He also leads group retreats and is available for special Reading-and-Dialogue sessions.

The titles of some of his addresses include "Servant-Leadership and the Honoring of Excellence," “Servant-Leadership and Business,” and "Robert K. Greenleaf's Influence on Trusteeship."

Among his recent keynote presentations are addresses to the Servant-Leadership Research Roundtable, the Louisiana Office of Mental Health, Gonzaga University, the Greenleaf Center, and Indiana Campus Compact.

Larry has been called today’s foremost authority on servant-leadership. Since 1990, Larry has given two hundred keynote addresses on servant-leadership on four continents, a dozen countries, and forty states.

Among his recent keynote presentations are the following:
  • Gonzaga University (Spokane, WA). Presentations. Taught class. Meetings. 03.24-28.15.
  • University of Wisconsin-Madison (Madison, WI). Presentation. 03.06.15.

  • Greenleaf Center Conference (Atlanta, GA). 09.23-25.14.
  • Servant-Leadership Research Roundtable (Virginia Beach, VA). Keynote address. 05.8-9.14.
  • Gonzaga University (Spokane, WA). Presentations. Taught class. 03.20-22.14.
  • University of Wisconsin-Madison (Madison, WI). Presentations. 03.6-7.14.
  • Servant-Leadership Winter Conference (San Diego, CA). Conference. 02.2-5.14.

  • Greenleaf Centre-UK Conference (London, England). Conference presentation. 11.7-8.13.
  • Minneapolis, MN Meetings. 10.23-24.13
  • Greenleaf Center Conference (Indianapolis, IN). Conference. 06.13-14.13
  • Servant-Leadership Roundtable (Virginia Beach, VA). Presentation. 05.11-12.13.
  • Servant-Leadership Winter Conference (San Diego, CA). Conference. 02.5-7.12
  • Gustavus Adolphus College (St. Peter, MN). Meetings. 01.03-31.13.
  • January Term at Gustavus Adolphus College (St. Peter, MN). Taught January Term 01.03-31.13.


  • Greenleaf Center-United Kingdom (London, England). Conference. 11.6-7.12.
  • East Carolina University (Greenville, NC). Keynote address. 10.25.12.
  • Georgia Institute of Technology (Atlanta, GA). Presentation. 10.3.12.
  • Minneapolis, MN. Presentation. 09.04-07.12.
  • Lewiston, ID. Presentation. 08.20.12.
  • Gonzaga University (Spokane, WA). Presentation. 08.15-18.12.
  • Trinity Western University (Vancouver, British Columbia). Presentation. 08.13.12.
  • Quaker Leadership Conference/Earlham School of Religion (Richmond, IN). Presentation. 08.10-11.12.
  • Trinity Western University (Vancouver, British Columbia). Presentation. 07.16.12.
  • Greenleaf Center Conference (Indianapolis, IN). 06.21-22.12.
  • Catholic Business Education Conference (Dayton, OH). Presentation. 06.18-19.12.
  • Presbyterian Church Pension Board (Philadelphia, PA). Workshop. 05.22.12.
  • Servant-Leadership Research Roundtable (Virginia Beach, VA). Presentation. 05.12-13.12.
  • University of Wisconsin-Madison (Madison, WI). Presentation. 04.19.12
  • Rasmussen College (Blaine, MN). Two presentations. 04.18.12
  • Project Management Institute-MN (Plymouth, MN). Workshop and Keynote Address. 04.17.12.
  • Bloomington, MN Meetings. 04.12-13.1
  • Des Moines, IA Meetings. 02.23-24.12.
  • Portland Center (Portland, OR). Keynote Address. 01.27.12.
  • George Fox College (Portland, OR). Presentation. 01.27.12.
  • Gustavus Adolphus College (St. Peter, MN). 01.9-10.12.
  • Greenleaf Centre-United Kingdom Conference (London, England). 11.09-10.11.
  • George Williams Retreat Center (Lake Geneva, WI). Presentation. 10.5.11
  • College of St. Elizabeth (Morristown, NJ). Presentations. 07.11-13.11
  • Greenleaf Center Conference (Dallas, TX). 06.09-10.11
  • Servant-Leadership Research Roundtable (Virginia Beach, VA). Presentation. 05.14-15.11.
  • Gustavus Adolphus College (St. Peter, MN). Presentation. 04.10.11
  • Gustavus Adolphus College (St. Peter, MN). Presentation with Richard Leider, “Savoring Your Life Through Servant-Leadership.” 04.09.11
  • Gonzaga University (Spokane, WA). 6 hour intensive graduate course. 04.01.11
  • Spokane Leadership Connection (Spokane, WA). 1 hour presentation.03.31.11
  • Booksigning (Spokane, WA). 03.30.11
  • Marylhurst College (Portland, OR). Conference presentation. 03.22-23.11.
  • Leadership Institute For Education (LIFE) (Indianapolis, IN). Participation in two-day Greenleaf Center program. 03.3-4.11
  • University of Wisconsin-Madison (Madison, WI). 6 hour workshop presentation; and, 2 hour presentation to Servant-Leadership Book Group. 02.08.11
  • Gustavus Adolphus College (St. Peter, MN). 01.06.11
  • Greenleaf Centre-United Kingdom Conference (London, England). 11.09-10.10.
  • Servant-Leadership Conference (Portland, OR). Keynote presentation. 10.21.10.
  • Gonzaga University (Spokane, WA). Taught class + presentations. 10.18-19.10.
  • Gustavus Adolphus College (St. Peter, MN). 06.13-14.10
  • Scanlon Conference (Kalamazoo, MI). Presentation and meeting. 05.25.10.
  • Gustavus Adolphus College (St. Peter, MN). 04.18-20.10
  • Butler University (Indianapolis, IN), 1 hour presentation on, “The Meaning and Practice of Servant-Leadership,” 08.16.10.
  • Friends Association for Higher Education Conference (Oskaloosa, IA), 90-minute keynote presentation on, “Servant-Leadership, Quakers, and Higher Education,” 06.19.10.
  • Greenleaf Center Conference (Atlanta, GA), 90-min. presentation on “The Council of Equals,” with George SanFacon, 06.18.10.
  • Servant-Leadership Roundtable, Regent University (Virginia Beach, VA), presentation on “Present and Future Projects,” 05.15.10.
  • Servant-Leadership Learning Community (Indianapolis, IN), 1 hr. presentation on “Savoring Servant-Leadership,” 02.05.10
  • Vail Leadership Institute (Vail, CO), 1 hr. telephonic presentation, “Servant-Leadership,” 07.21.09.
  • Servant-Leadership Roundtable (Virginia Beach, VA), 30 minute talk: A Selected Review of Servant-Leadership Literature, 05.18.09
  • Scanlon Leadership Conference (Kalamazoo, MI), presentation: On The Human Treatment of Human Beings, 05.12.09
  • Service and Learning Conference, Geneva College (Pittsburgh, PA), panel program and keynote presentation: Robert K. Greenleaf and Servant-Leadership, 04.14.09
  • Hope College (Holland, MI), presentation: Servant-Leadership, 03.31.09
  • Association for Manufacturing Excellence/Champions Club Meeting (Orlando, FL), keynote presentation: Introduction to Servant-Leadership: Concept, Characteristics, and Practices, 03.12.09
  • Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges of Technology (Arlington, VA), 1 day retreat: Understanding and Practicing Servant-Leadership, 12.17.08
  • Catholic Charities (Peoria, IL), 3 hour program: Personal Practices of Servant-Leadership, 11.05.08
  • Luther Seminary (St. Paul, MN), 30 minute talk: Robert K. Greenleaf and Servant-Leadership, 10.06.08
  • 3M Company Seminar (St. Paul, MN), 1 hour presentation: The Meaning and Practice of Servant-Leadership, 10.07.08
  • 20th Annual David W. Preuss Leadership Award Program (St. Paul, MN), 30 minute talk: Shannon, Greenleaf, and Servant-Leadership, 10.07.08
  • Servant-Leader Writer’s Retreat (Brooklyn, MI), 3 day facilitated retreat, 09.26-28.08
  • Servant-Leadership Learning Community (Indianapolis, IN), 2 hour presentation: Servant-Leadership: Past, Present, and Future, 08.08.08
  • Servant-Leadership Global Research Roundtable (Rotterdam, The Netherlands), 1 hour presentation: Review of Servant-Leadership Literature, 07.09-11.08
  • DePauw University Alumni Weekend (Greencastle, Indiana), acceptance remarks made upon receiving their Community Leader Award, 06.14.08
  • Federal Aviation Administration (Grapevine, TX), 2 hour presentation: Understanding Servant-Leadership, 05.14.08
  • IUPUI Emerging Leaders (Indianapolis, IN), 1.5 hour presentation: Servant-Leadership and Service-Learning, 04.02.08
  • Mennonite Central Committee Gathering (New Holland, PA),1 day workshop: The Spirit of Servant-Leadership, 02.22.08
  • Louisiana Office of Mental Health Conference, New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Indiana Author’s Bookstore Conference, Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Virginia Tech University, Blacksburg, Virginia
  • Servant-Leadership Research Roundtable, Virginia Beach, Virginia
  • Alpha Kappa Psi Annual Conference, Washington, D.C.
  • International Policy Governance Association Conference, Alexandria, Virginia
  • Arizona Organizational Development Network Conference, Phoenix, Arizona
  • Faculty Enrichment Presentation, Alma College, Alma, Michigan
  • Gonzaga University, Spokane, Washington
  • Indiana State University, Terre Haute, Indiana
  • College Leadership Boot Camp, Disney World, Florida
  • Greenleaf Center International Conference, Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Scanlon Leadership Network Conference, Kalamazoo, Michigan
  • Indiana Campus Compact Conference, Purdue University, W. Lafayette, Indiana
  • CEO Netweavers, Dallas, Texas
  • St. Mary’s University, San Antonio, Texas
  • Clinton School of Public Service, Little Rock, Arizona
  • Fetzer Institute Program, Kalamazoo, Michigan
  • Servant-Leadership Seminar, Gonzaga University, Spokane, Washington
  • Greenleaf Center-United Kingdom Conference, London, England
  • Servant-Leadership Program, Noble Prize Museum, Stockholm, Sweden
  • Servant-Leadership Program, Latin School, Stockholm, Sweden
  • Servant-Leadership Program, Friends Meeting, Stockholm, Sweden
  • Servant-Leadership Research Roundtable, Virginia Beach, Virginia
  • Servant-Leadership Program, Minneapolis, Minnesota
  • Baldwin-Wallace College, Ohio
  • Indiana State University, Terre Haute, Indiana
  • Avista Company Program, Seattle, Washington
  • Servant-Leadership Program, Seattle, Washington
  • Servant-Leadership Presentation, Atlanta, Georgia

Larry C. Spears and Robert K. Greenleaf

For two decades, Larry has encouraged a deepening understanding of Robert Greenleaf’s original writings on servant-leadership while also significantly enlarging upon our understanding of its applications. Larry has sought to serve Robert Greenleaf’s message, and spirit, in many ways—Larry Spears and Robert Greenleaf

• In the 1980’s Larry was on the staff of Friends Journal, a Philadelphia-based Quaker magazine, when he first encountered Robert Greenleaf’s ideas in several articles published by Friends Journal.

• In March 1990, Larry was named CEO of The Greenleaf Center and marshaled its relocation from Massachusetts to Indianapolis.

• In September 1990, Larry visited with Bob Greenleaf eight days before he died.

• In 1991, Larry organized a remembrance program for Bob Greenleaf, which evolved into the Greenleaf Center’s annual conference on servant-leadership.

• In 1991, Larry discovered the existence of dozens of previously unknown and/or unpublished writings by Greenleaf, written over a period of nearly fifty years. He secured support from Lilly Endowment and established a blue-ribbon committee which spent two years reading the newly discovered writings, comparing them to Greenleaf’s published work.

* In 1992 Larry surveyed Robert Greenleaf's writings and identified Greenleaf's ten most frequently mentioned characteristics of the effective servant-leader.  Since then Larry's own writings on servant-leadership characteristics has resulted in several hundred articles, papers, and dissertations that have been written by others.  Millions have been introduced to servant-leadership through Larry's writings, and through his appearances on radio and television. 

• In 1996 Berrett-Koehler published two collections of Robert Greenleaf’s unpublished writings: On Becoming a Servant-Leader (edited by Larry C. Spears and Don M. Frick), and Seeker and Servant (edited by Larry C. Spears and Anne Fraker).

• In 1998, Larry collected and edited a series of Greenleaf’s writings previously available only as separate essay. This was published by Berrett-Koehler as The Power of Servant-Leadership.

• In 2002, Larry conceived and edited the 25th anniversary edition of Greenleaf’s book, Servant Leadership. He added to it a special Introduction by Stephen Covey, and an Afterword by Peter Senge.

• In 2003, Larry conceived and edited (along with Hamilton Beazley and Julie Beggs) a collection of writings by Bob Greenleaf titled The Servant-Leader Within, which was published by Paulist Press.

• In 2004, Larry’s appearance on NBC’s Dateline introduced ten million viewers to Robert Greenleaf and his writings.

• Since 1990, Larry has published and spoken widely in his heartfelt effort to raise public awareness of Robert Greenleaf and servant-leadership practices. Following eighteen years with The Greenleaf Center, this goal remains the primary emphasis for his work at The Spears Center.

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