Catherine Chege, Ph.D. is a 2022 graduate of the PHD Program in Leadership and Change at Antioch University.

Catherine Chege at her Dissertation Defense.

From L-R: Dr. Lize Booysen, Committee Chair, Dr. Elizabeth Holloway, Committee Member, Dr. Faith Ngunjiri, Committee Member.

Dissertation Committee

  • Lize Booysen, DBL, Committee Chair
  • Elizabeth Holloway, Ph.D., Committee Member
  • Faith Wambura Ngunjiri, Ph.D., Committee Member


leadership, emergent leadership, maternal, maternal influence, maternalism, narrative inquiry

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This qualitative research aimed to study the experiences of Kenyan female leaders and explore Kenyan maternal influence in their lived experiences. It examined how maternal influence shapes female leadership in Kenya by embodying relational and transformational leadership qualities and proves that maternal influence makes women congruent with leadership roles. Despite global advances recognizing the principle of women’s political, economic, and social equality, Kenyan women continue to be marginalized in many areas of society, especially in leadership and decision making. Kenyan women also continue to rank very low in their communities’ social hierarchy, yet they play a critical role in their homes and societies and deserve attention as leaders beyond the nurture and childbearing topics. One-on-one interviews were used in a narrative inquiry approach and a constructivist worldview; this research developed an understanding of Kenyan maternal influence and constructed the meaning of its role within female leadership in Kenya. The analysis of the interview transcriptions revealed 12 significant traits in the participants’ perceptions of their early leadership development, as observed from their mothers. Mothers are indirect leadership scholars in a patriarchal institution that is oppressive to women. Central to this research is recognizing that mothers and daughters benefit when the mother lives her life and practices mothering from a position of authority, authenticity, and autonomy. This dissertation is available in open access at AURA ( and OhioLINK ETD Center (


Catherine Chege

ORCID Scholar ID #: #0000-0002-5991-7089

Catherine has been in higher education since 2004 and has held multiple roles in operations, working closely with adult learners and non-traditional students. She is currently the Executive Director of Academic Operation (EDAO) with Arizona College of Nursing in Las Vegas, providing oversight and general management of the curriculum and faculty of the Bachelor of Science in Nursing program through chairing the program outcomes and course objectives. Before serving as an EDAO, Catherine was the Executive Director of Enrollment Services. Catherine holds a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.), in Leadership and Change, from Antioch University. She also has a Master of Business and a Master, of Human Resource Management, from DeVry University ‘s Keller Graduation School of Management and a Bachelor of Science in Communications from Pensacola Christian College.

Catherine has a long history in post-secondary education, with her previous leadership roles at Carrington College and Chamberlain University, where she was a Director of Campus Operations. Her responsibilities included Admissions, Financial Aid, Academics, Scheduling, Student Services, and P&L. Catherine was also involved in campus startups and change management initiatives. Catherine is consistently student, and colleague centric, focused on building strong teams and being responsive to improving the student experience. Catherine lends her leadership experience to prominent organizations and Boards, including service as a member of Career Education Colleges and Universities and the Southern Nevada Higher Education Consortium, the National Academic Advising Association, and the National Association of Colleges and Employers. Catherine is originally from Kenya and is active with the African Diaspora of Las Vegas (ADOLV), Kenyan Women in the United States (KWITU), and Kenyan Women in Nevada (KWINS).