Charles J. PalusHonorary Senior Fellow, Americas 


    Charles J. (Chuck) Palus, PhD. studies, teaches, and develops leadership as a relational process in the context of the vertical transformation of leadership cultures, with a special interest in digital disruption.

    He is co-founder of CCL Labs, a community-based innovation laboratory with a line of products including Visual Explorer, Leadership Metaphor Explorer, Leadership Essentials, Transformations, the Early Leadership Toolkit, and the Leadership Culture Tool Box. He is a designer and facilitator in the CCL Organizational Leadership Practice and is one of its co-founders.

    He has co-designed development experiences including: Leading Creatively, EdgeWork, Facing and Solving Complex Challenges, Transforming Your Organization, Boundary Spanning Leadership, and Leadership for Societal Impact. He is a passionate contributor to the CCL Societal Impact agenda and has worked extensively in Africa.

    He is co-author of the award-winning book The Leader’s Edge; and the papers: Making Common Sense: Leadership as Meaning-Making in a Community of Practice, and Evolving Leaders. His work appears in Leadership Quarterly, Integral Review, Harvard Business Review, the Harvard Business School Handbook for Teaching Leadership, the CCL Handbook of Leadership Development, the CCL Handbook of Coaching, the Handbook of Action Research, and the Change Handbook.

    Prior to coming to the Center for Creative Leadership, Chuck was an R&D engineer in polymer products with E.I DuPont de Nemours; a water purification engineer with Vaponics; an instructor and designer with the Hurricane Island Outward Bound School; and taught social psychology and statistics at Boston College.

    Current Role

    Chuck is an Honorary Senior Fellow and is one of the co-founders for CCL’s Organizational Leadership Practice.

    Educational Background

    Ph.D. in Developmental Psychology from Boston College
    B.S. in Chemical Engineering from the Pennsylvania State University

    Professional Affiliations

    Chuck is a founding member of the Co-Lead Network at New York University, and a Founding Fellow of Action Inquiry Associates.

    Curriculum Vitae

    Select CCL Publications

    • Mediated Dialogue: See Your Way Through Change
    • Cultivating Networks that Support Innovation: A Case Study of Leadership Development at Merrimack Pharmaceuticals
    • Network Savvy Executives: Five Advantages for Leaders in a Networked World
    • Exploring Shared Value: Inter-organizational Networks as a Strategy for Business Success and Positive Societal Impact
    • Leadership Strategies for Societal Impact

    Select External Publications

    • Developing Relational Leadership in Africa
    • Mediated Dialogue in Action Research
    • Developing Interdependent Leadership Direction, Alignment, Commitment: Toward a More Integrative Ontology of Leadership
    • The Leaders Edge: Six Creative Competencies for Navigating Complex Challenges

    Honors, Awards, Grants

    • Senior Fellow, Center for Creative Leadership, 2015.
    • Founding Fellow, Action Inquiry Associates (with Bill Torbert), 2013.
    • Invited Scholar, Harvard Business School, Seminar on Teaching Leadership, 2008-2011.
    • Invited Scholar, Columbia University, Teacher’s College Thought Leader Co-Inquiry, 2009- 2010.
    • Senior Advisor, New York University, The Wagner School, (Collective
    • Leadership Network 2014-present) (Research Center for Leadership in Action 2008-2014) (Leadership for a Changing World 2001-2008).
    Charles J. Palus

    Contact Information


    Areas of Expertise

    Communication, Creativity & Innovation, Relational Leadership, Transformation of Leadership Cultures, Leadership Strategy, Vertical Development, Societal Impact

    Cindy McCauleySarah J. Pearsall