Faculty & Research

Elizabeth A. Powell

Elizabeth A. Powell, Assistant Professor of Business Administration

  • BA, MA, University of Virginia; PhD, Northwestern University
Office: FOB 297
Phone: +1-434-982-2730
E-mail: PowellE@darden.virginia.edu


Lili Powell joined the Darden School faculty in 1994, where she teaches MBA, EMBA, and Executive Education classes in leadership, management, and corporate communication.  Professor Powell has designed and taught courses ranging from the required first-year MBA course in management communication to elective courses and executive classes on communicating across cultural boundaries, managing communication as a critical resource, and communicating through leadership presence.  Most recently, she co-designed a small seminar asking students to define in their own terms “Business and Success.” Prior to Darden, Powell taught courses in public speaking, rhetoric, interpersonal communication, and leadership at Northwestern University.

Dr. Powell has authored numerous business case studies and technical notes.  She has presented her work at the Conference on Corporate Communication, the Association for Business Communication, the Management Communication Association, the National Communication Association, and the Reputation Institute’s Conference on Reputation, Image, Identity, and Competitiveness.  She is co-author of Women in Business: The Changing Face of Leadership (Greenwood, 2007).  She is currently working on a new book entitled Present: Leadership as Wise Practice.

As a consultant, facilitator, instructor, and coach, Professor Powell has assisted a variety of organizations and universities, including the American Medical Association, Annenberg Foundation, Council for Public Relations Firms, IAE Business School (Argentina), IBMEC Sao Paul (Brazil), KPMG, Lagos (Nigeria) Public Schools, National Industries for the Blind, Providian Corporation, Stockholm School of Economics (Sweden), United Technologies, University of Virginia, US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the Virginia Banker’s School of Bank Management, and the World Bank. 

At the University of Virginia, she has served on committees ranging from the Women’s Center to the Faculty Senate.  She now serves on the advisory board for the U.Va. Institute of the Humanities and Global Cultures.  She is currently co-director of the MBA/MEd dual degree, designed to promote innovation in education reform.    


Leadership Presence
Management Communication
Internal and External Communication
Strategic/Corporate Communication
Women in Leadership

MBA Courses

Management Communication (MBA and EMBA)
Communicating through Leadership Presence (EMBA)

Executive Education Courses

Management Development Program: High-Performance Leadership
Darden- Curry Partnership for Leaders in Education
UTC Emerging Leaders Program 
Women’s Leadership Program 
Programs with Global Partners – Argentina, Brazil, Nigeria, Sweden

Featured Video

Professor Elizabeth Powell on Leadership

Professor Powell talks about her path to teaching about leadership presence and rhetorical courage.