John Ralston Leadership Initiatives
In our quickly changing global landscape, we have a responsibility to ensure that a Stanford education is not only about one’s discipline, but also one’s ability to lead. Our students will be leaders of communities, industry, and government. We bear a responsibility to ensure their leadership changes and shapes our world for the better.
We are pleased to announce that thanks to a generous lead gift, in recognition of the extraordinary leadership example of John Ralston (1927-2019), head football coach of Stanford Football from 1963-1971, this new program will be named in his honor. The program launches on the eve of the 50th anniversary of his second Rose Bowl win against the #4 ranked Michigan Wolverines on January 1, 1972. This is a fitting tribute to a leader who was more teacher than coach, more philosopher than disciplinarian, and more mentor than boss. It is also fitting because this new program focuses on developing purposeful leaders who can: lead with confidence, humility, and self-discipline; lead teams of experts effectively; manage, mentor others and build stronger, more resilient relationships; and inspire and influence others while achieving collective goals. John Ralston exemplified these qualities, as well as the confidence to recruit, hire and mentor people who could become more successful than he was. Indeed his positive approach to life and his empathetic leadership style created one of college football’s most enviable coaching trees and it is timely that the inception of the idea for this leadership program, the first of its kind at Stanford, coincided with the 50th anniversary of Coach Ralston’s signature 1970 Pac-8 championship season and Rose Bowl victory over the #1 ranked Ohio State Buckeyes on January 1, 1971. The extraordinary leadership traits that John Ralston embodied are exactly what we hope to instill in our undergraduate students through this program.
The office of the Vice Provost of Student Affairs will design and implement leadership training for undergraduate and graduate students who hold leadership roles across the campus, including student organization leaders, ASSU officers, RAs, and athletes, as well as students who may not have formal titles, but who are interested and would benefit from the program.
John Ralston Leadership Initiatives Framework
The John Ralston Stanford Leadership Initiatives specifically focus on developing purposeful leaders who display the following seven key competencies...