DM, University of Phoenix; MS, Clarion University of Pennsylvania

Research Interests

Ethics; nonprofits; leadership; management; culture; community; organizational transformation; strategy; philanthropy


Dr. East is currently the director of The Center for Leadership and Innovation at Florida Gulf Coast University. Prior to that, she served as president and CEO of the Southwest Florida Community Foundation. A Certified Fund Raising Executive, Dr. East has extensive experience in U.S. fundraising practices, has done research on philanthropic issues in China, and was a presenter at the Florida State Caucus of the Association of Fundraising Professionals in June 2010. Dr. East’s consulting work focuses on board relations, organizational transformation, strategic planning, and coaching foundation and nonprofit executives. She is active in Rotary Club and serves on the boards of the Speakers Assembly of Southwest Florida and the Clarion University of Pennsylvania College of Arts and Sciences as well as on the advisory board of Florida Shores Bank. She contributed a chapter to the book Laws of Communication, published in 2009, and is currently writing books about organizational transformation and philanthropy. Dr. East specializes in mentoring DBA students at Walden.