Faculty & Research

Faculty and Executive Leadership Directory

Cort Worthington

Distinguished Teaching Fellow
Email: click on the envelope icon below for full email address
Academic Status: On duty
Office Hours: By appointment, F494
Personal Homepage: http://www.cortworthington.com/
Curriculum Vitae (in PDF format, Acrobat Reader required)


MBA, Haas School of Business, UC Berkeley
MBA, Columbia Business School, Columbia University
MA, CommunicationStanford University
BA, Education and History, summa cum laude, Central Washington University

Positions Held

At Haas since 2008

2008 – present, Lecturer, Haas School of Business
2015 – present, Founding Partner and Principal, The Starfish Institute 
2005 – 2008, Stanford T-Group Facilitator, Stanford University Graduate School of Business
1992 – 2010, Founder and Creative Director, Illuminata Films
1996 – 1997, Co-Founder and Director of Operations, Primordial, LLC
1989 – 1991, 1995, United States Forest Service Smokejumper

Current Research and Interests

  • The utilization of improvisation as core pedagogical methodology for soft-skill leadership trait development

Selected Papers and Publications

Produced, wrote, directed, and edited:

  • Where There’s Smoke
    Documentary film on Smokejumpers, the United States Forest Service fire fighters who parachute into wilderness areas to attack remote forest fires. © 1990 Illuminata, LLC
  • Unarmed Commitment
    Documentary profiling PBI, a United Nations recognized NGO focused on anti-death squad
    human rights efforts in Guatemala. © 1994 Illuminata, LLC
  • Sun Cell 
    Documentary examining the human and productivity impact of Sun Microsystems’ five year reorganization of global manufacturing operations from a hierarchical structure into a cell team based model. Interview data utilized to facilitate iterative consulting process with senior Sun management. © 2000 Illuminata, LLC
  • The Nueva School
    Documentary on the nationally recognized school for gifted children in Hillsborough, CA. © 2005 Illuminata, LLC
  • CCA One Hundred
    Documentary profiling the California College of the Arts. © 2007 Illuminata, LLC


  • The Authentic Leader, MBA 296
  • Leadership Communication MBA 200C
  • Leadership and Personal Development, MBA 291T-1B
  • Leadership and Personal Development, UGBA 196-4
  • Improvisation and Leadership, EWMBA 296-15, UGBA 196-5/196-6
  • Executive Leadership XMBA 256-1
  • Improvisational Leadership EWMBA 296-12, UGBA 196-5
  • Negotiation and Conflict Resolution UBBA 152
  • The Art of Coaching Conversations, MBA 296-4A

Honors and Awards

  • Earl F. Cheit Award for Excellence in Teaching, 2018, Undergraduate program
  • Multiple Year Club 6 Member (for teaching excellence based on student evaluations)

Faculty Directory: Alphabetical Listing
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