Graduate School of Business


Doctor of Business Administration (DBA)


Melanie A Hicks


Accountability, Black Church, Church Leaders, Financial Literacy, Financial Resources, Stewardship


Accounting | Business | Business Administration, Management, and Operations | Business Law, Public Responsibility, and Ethics | Other Business


This study explored the lack of financial literacy and accountability of church leaders within black Baptist Church in fulfilling their financial stewardship responsibilities in overseeing the church’s resources. In order for churches to grow both spiritually and financially, the church leaders are critical to the overall success and sustainability of the organization. The conceptual framework for this study was based on the stewardship theory, which implied that church leaders would perform as responsible stewards in managing the church’s resources. In this study, the researcher used a qualitative method with a case study design to explore the education and experiences of 12 church leaders in performing their financial responsibilities and to discover their perceptions in fulfilling their financial stewardship responsibilities. Prior research revealed that black church leaders had minimum skills, education, and experience in dealing with the financial operations of the church, and ineffective financial practices and procedures led to fraudulent activities or misappropriation funds. Inconsistent with prior research, this study revealed that church leaders in black Baptist Churches in the Mid-Atlantic Region of the U.S. were educated and appeared capable of implementing proper stewardship over the church’s resources.