Curt & Christie Brungardt
Drs. Curt and Christie Brungardt are best known as social entrepreneurs who have worked tirelessly to address issues of injustice and inequality. Between them, they have 47 years of experience in higher education, where they have been active in the fields of leadership development and civic engagement. Dr. Curt Brungardt is the Voss Distinguished Professor of Leadership Studies and the Executive Director of the Center for Civic Leadership at Fort Hays State University (FHSU). He specializes in political leadership and social justice. Curt has authored and co-authored several books and numerous articles in the field of civic leadership. He is recognized nationally for his work in the area of social change leadership theory. Dr. Christie Brungardt is an Assistant Professor of Leadership Studies and the Director of the Women’s Leadership Project at FHSU. Christie publishes and presents in the fields of service learning, civic engagement and gender issues in leadership. On July 3, 2008, Curt and Christie’s lives changed forever. Their daughter, Jana Mackey, a 25 year-old law student at the University of Kansas was murdered by her ex-boyfriend in Lawrence, KS. Like her parents, Jana was a committed social activist. She was well known throughout Kansas for her advocacy for women’s issues. Since Jana’s death, Curt and Christie have been active nationally in the effort to reduce gender and relationship violence. They have established Jana’s Campaign Inc. with the single purpose of reducing domestic and dating violence. They believe it is their responsibility to use both the story of Jana’s life and the story of her death to reduce gender violence. Much of their work in the past two years has centered on working with middle and high schools and on college campuses. In that time, they have worked with thousands of students on ways to recognize healthy – and unhealthy - relationships.