Center for Leadership Initiatives


The Center for Leadership Initiatives (CLI) encompasses Commoner Hall, as well as a wide range of discipline-oriented forums that are integral to a student’s critical thinking related to international relations and leadership studies. Students have the opportunity to be actively engaged in CLI forums and programs that include the following areas:

  • Commoner Hall is named in honor of The Great Commoner, William Jennings Bryan, and follows the University of Oxford collegiate system of a Hall preceding a College.  Commoner Forums, led by Dr. Ron Petitte, includes student-led assemblies where the burning social issues of the day are discussed from the Christian perspective.
  • Additional Forums
    • Defense Forum led by LTC Doug Schott, U.S. Air Force (Ret.)
    • Leadership Forum led by CLI Director Dr. Ron Petitte, retired U.S. Army Colonel (A.U.S.)
    • International Forum led by Mr. Dennis Miller, Director of Bryan’s Center for International Development


Colonel Ron D. Petitte, USA (Ret.), VMI '65, Director of Bryan College's Center for Ledaership Initiatives and Captain Susan J. Rabern, USN (Ret.), Director of the Virginia Military Institute (VMI)'s Center for Leadership & Ethics, in the VMI Hall of Valor, February 25, 2013.