Michale & Teresa Naughton Institute

Michale & Teresa Naughton Institute


“THE HEALTH OF A SOCIETY is directly dependent on the quality of its leaders. This is simply true. The inverse is also true. Where you find a society in disarray and suffering from a lack of unity and direction, where the people are not thriving and lack a sense of a common good, where they are incapable of hope and the lament of the mistaken direction of society is the common refrain, there you will also find a lack of good leadership” (Dr. Jonathan Reyes Director, USCCB Office of Justice, Peace, and Human Development in “True Leaderhip, Habiger Institute for Catholic Leadership”, p. ix)

“The human race makes its way in the world under the exercise of leadership. Whether in family, or in faith, or in politics, or in work and business, or in education, or in the arts and trades, we learn from others, we follow the lead of others, and we in our turn take positions of leadership and influence others. An important corollary to this general principle emerges, which is unavoidable as based on a truth of our nature: the health and Whether in family, or in faith, or in politics, or in work and business, or in education, or in the arts and trades, we learn from others, we follow the lead of others, and we in our turn take positions of leadership, and influence others”(True Leadership, The Habiger Institute for Catholic Leadership, Centre for Catholic Studies University of St Thomas, Minnesota., p. 6)


In September 2012, Professor Mike Naughton, currently the Director, Center for Catholic Studies, and Koch Chair in Catholic Studies University of St Thomas, Minnesota and his most beloved wife Teresa visited the Catholic University Institute of Buea (CUIB) at the invitation of His Lordship Bishop Immanuel Bushu, founder and Chancellor of the Catholic University Institute of Buea. During their visit, the University Professor made an official visitation to the University and also launched “Vocation of the Business Leader, A Reflection, from the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace”.

At the end of his visitation, Professor Mike Naughton made some recommendations and emphasized the importance of good leadership, clear sense of mission, vision, identity and stewardship, high academic standard, strong and healthy institutional culture and well-articulated organizational structure which he found weak at that time in the Catholic University. His recommendations were instrumental to the restructuring of the organization structure and Management Team of the University by the Founder and Chancellor of the University on the 28th of September 2012. This restructuring was later on followed by the first International Leadership seminar for CUIB Faculty and Administrators organized and sponsored by the University of St Thomas, Minnesota Center for Catholic Studies. For Professor Mike Naughton, the leadership seminar was so important for the growth of CUIB since he strongly believes that the health of any institution depends on the quality of its leaders.

Three years later, through his relentless efforts, from the 30th of May – 13th of June 2016, another International Leadership Seminar for Faculty and Administrators of CUIB was organized and sponsored again by the Center for Catholic Studies, UST., and moderated by Prof. Jeanne Buckeye, current Director of the John Ryan Institute. The added value and impact that this relationship has brought to CUIB is unbelievable. Currently, two Priests are doing their Master’s Degree in Catholic studies at the University of St Thomas, MN thanks to the efforts of Prof. Mike Naughton and his great team at the Centre for Catholic Studies. Is it possible to replicate such a great culture for CUIB, Cameroon and Africa? Isn’t one of the biggest challenges facing Africa Leadership?

On Thursday the 9th of June, during the Second International Leadership Seminar at UST, MN, the President of CUIB, Rev. Fr George Nkeze Jingwa having been inspired and touched by the transformation of the CUIB team that came to the US and seeing the impact that the UST Habiger Institute for Catholic Leadership, Center for Catholic Studies University of St Thomas was having on its students and community promised to begin a seminar Institute in CUIB under the School of Catholic Studies. He proposed for CUIB, The Michael and Teresa Naughton Institute of Integral Leadership and Organizational Development to continue the Naughton’s legacy of forming quality leaders for the Church, Civil Society and Professional life. Generally institutes are named after donors, but in this case the emphasis is to focus on those millions of good families in the world who like the Naughtons are impacting on communities in a quiet but effective way.

Professor Michael J. Naughton, Director, Center for Catholic Studies and Koch Chair in Catholic Studies, University of St. Thomas Minnesota and his great and selfless wife, Teresa Naughton genuinely believe that the overall health of a society or a civilization can be measured by the quality of its leaders, and by the care it bestows upon their formation and training. A popular way of expressing this is saying that people get the leaders they deserve. A group or a society that understands the nature of leadership and takes it seriously will tend to produce leaders who reflect that understanding. A group or a society who take leadership lightly or who have a corrupted understanding of it will tend to produce corrupt and deficient leaders. We are living in a time of crisis in leadership. Even a brief look at the current state of both the Church and the wider society will yield the conclusion, first, that this is a time when good leadership is especially important, and second, that we are facing grave failures in leadership.

Mike and Teresa Naughton strongly believe that every age needs good leaders. But in times of fundamental social stability, when long-standing arrangements and regard for tradition impart a general wisdom to the whole of a society, failures in leadership, while harmful, do not necessarily lead to immediate disaster. The force of custom and the strength of societal institutions can cover a multitude of leadership sins, as they are meant to do. Our time is not like that. There are many factors that make our age unique. Such factors include rapid change and the increasing complexity of life, the growth of new technologies and their effect on our social and personal lives, an emerging and unprecedented interrelatedness in politics and economics and social customs across the globe, and a dissolving of tradition and a general contempt for the customs of the past, along with an arrogant confidence on the part of many who think that we are fully capable of solving our problems with our own resources. Our time is not one for sleepy leadership. We need to be wide awake.

All our basic institutions, from family to business and professional life to Church governance, are in the process of transformation, and at times are tottering under concerted attack. Serious moral challenges have arisen in ways not faced before: the biomedical revolution and the astounding possibilities it opens stands as an example of many such challenges. The very concept of what it means to be human is up for grabs. If ever there was a time when good leadership was necessary—clear-headed and strong-charactered leadership—that time is ours.


The Michael and Teresa Naughton Institute of integral leadership and organizational development is established as a response to this challenge particularly in a continent where majority of its challenges are leadership-related, leadership that is geared towards the common good. Its mission is simple and direct – to form a new generation of good and integral leaders for the Church, Civil Society and Professional life patterned from the Leadership of Christ, the true Leader par excellence.

The Institute is the first in the history of CUIB housed under the School of Catholic Studies and modeled along the lines of the Habiger Institute for Catholic Leadership of the University of St. Thomas, Centre for Catholic Studies. According to this Institute’s philosophy, good leadership is a way of being. It involves the whole person, from speaking skills and intellectual formation, to character and fundamental commitments. This is a vision of integral Christian leadership. And it takes as its model of leadership Jesus Christ.

Consider how different the model of Christ’s leadership is from many ways of leading popularized in our culture. Viewed from the perspective of measurable success, Our Lord’s own leadership looked like a failure—at least until the Resurrection. The movement he sought to establish and the institution he was building were seemingly in disarray at the end of his life. His followers had been scattered; some had even betrayed and denied him. His was a record of what appeared to be dashed hopes, as can be seen in the pathos-filled words of the disciple on the road to Emmaus: “Jesus of Nazareth, a prophet mighty in deed and word” but whom “our chief priests and rulers delivered up to be condemned to death and crucified

But we had hoped that he was the one to redeem Israel” (cf. Lk 24:15–21). Of course, the long history since Our Lord’s Resurrection tells a very different story. The movement he founded and the institution he established has outlived every empire and nation and spread to the whole world. There is an important lesson in this: To lead like Christ may not fit the world’s expectations, but it is the way that the truly lasting things, those that serve the good of the whole human race, are established and grow. It is the only true way of effective leadership. To this day, people follow him. And if we are to lead as he leads, we must become like him. We must take on Our Lord’s mind and heart. We must be conformed to him in our intellect, will and passions. Once we understand this, once we make the decision to pursue him with our minds and wills, then our skills, techniques, and gifts can be put at the service of true leadership for the sake of the world.


The Institute, based on its mission will offer formation programmes for the following groups:

    • Church: Church organizations, Parishes, Schools, apostolic groups etc.
    • Civil Society – organizations and communities
    • Professional life- companies, executives, universities etc.
    • Clergy and Religious, Diocese of Buea

For More information Contact
Director, Naughton Institute of Integral Leadership and Organizational Development
P. O. Box 563
Molyko, Buea