view all programs
Experience transformational education that operates at the crossroads of competence, character, and connection through the Townsend Institute’s life-changing counseling and leadership programs.
The Townsend Institute at Concordia University Irvine offers fully accredited online graduate degrees, professional certificates, and bachelor's degrees in three content areas: Organizational Leadership, Executive Coaching and Consulting, and Counseling. Masterful psychologist and relationship expert Dr. John Townsend founded the Institute to address both the head and the heart, incorporating scriptural truths with current neuroscience. Discover how the Institute’s approach goes deeper than behavioral change and moves us to growth.
Dr. John Townsend is a New York Times bestselling author, leadership consultant, psychologist, and relationship expert. He has written 35 books, selling 10 million copies, including the bestselling Boundaries series. His depth of experience and research result in practical counsel that has been sought-after by scores of listeners through his live broadcasts. Built from the foundation of his teachings, Dr. Townsend established the Townsend Institute in 2015 and still plays an active role with leading the way we learn about counseling and leadership.
Experience a new kind of relational education. Join us online LIVE and hear from our faculty, academic advisors, current students, and alumni about their experience in the Townsend Institute.
Townsend LIVE (Bachelor's, Certificate, Master's & Ph.D. programs)
Wed, Oct 12, 2022, 5:30 PM PST
Register Now »
Townsend LIVE Online Information Night
Mon, Oct 31, 2022, 10:30 AM PST
Learn more about Townsend Institute LIVE »
This program not only gets into your mind, it gets into your heart. I feel like the Townsend Institute is behind me in my endeavor to supply restorative support to others.
Meet the Fellows
Learn from world-class Christian thought leaders. From New York Times best-selling authors to noteworthy organization leaders, researchers, and clinicians, the Townsend Institute’s Fellows provide students with unparalleled access to inspirational and influential Christian leaders from around the world. When paired with The Townsend Institute’s academic faculty, the result is a cross functional and collaborative Christian learning environment that broadens your leadership skill set.
Jon Acuff is the New York Times Bestselling author of six books and was named an INC top 100 leadership speaker. His work is taught by the NFL Player's Association and each year he talks to some of the biggest brands in the world including Microsoft, Nissan, Comedy Central, and FedEx.
Developer of Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy, researcher, professor of clinical psychology, author of Hold Me Tight, The Practice of Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy.
Retired NFL player, author of several books including The Third Option: Hope for a Racially Divided Nation, founder of The Third Option Similarity Training
Leadership expert, business consultant, psychologist and bestselling author, including Boundaries for Leaders.
Co-author of Good Faith (2016), unChristian (2007), and The Next Christians (2010) as a manifesto for how Christians can faithfully lead in a changing culture. Founder of Q, a learning community of Christian leaders where they are equipped to engage our cultural moment.
New York Times Bestselling author, Blue Like Jazz. Public speaker, and business owner. StoryBrand is a company that helps businesses clarify their messages.
Psychiatrist, brain disorder specialist, founder of the Amen Clinics, bestselling author, Change Your Brain, Change Your Mind.
Founder and chairman, New Life Ministries and New Life syndicated radio program, founder of Women of Faith, bestselling author, including Every Man’s Battle.
Founder of the Barna Research Group, leadership expert and bestselling author of many books, including Master Leaders.
Karen Bergstrom optimizes her over thirty years of experience as an executive in nonprofit agencies and enjoys her role as a leadership coach and directing Safe Families for Children.
Management expert, founder and spiritual director of the Blanchard Companies, Founder of Lead Like Jesus, speaker, bestselling author, including One Minute Manager.
Past President of Continental Airlines, past CEO of Burger King; past CEO of Quiznos; past CEO of Price Waterhouse Cooper Consulting.
Former CEO LensCrafters and Family Christian Bookstores.
Jim Burns speaks to thousands of people around the world; he has over 1.5 million resources in print in over 25 languages including Faith Conversations for Families.
Speaker, author, teacher, and leader of an organization that invests in equipping women to serve God’s purpose in missions and ministry. Inspire Women reaches thousands of women each year through its citywide events, programs and Leadership Academy curriculum.
Psychologist, marriage and family expert, founder of the Gary Chapman Chair at Moody Bible Institute, author of many books, including the New York Times bestseller The Five Love Languages.
Popular author, including the title Finding Home.
A Dallas-based couple that spends their after-work hours as speakers, stage actors, and advocates for those with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
One of the most widely read and viewed authors on blended families, Ron is President of SmartStepfamilies™ and directs the international blended family ministry of FamilyLife®. He is a podcaster, bestselling author of twenty books and resources, conference speaker, and family therapist who has appeared frequently in the national media. He has been married to Nan (since 1986) and is the father of three boys.
Executive Coach, Therapist, Townsend Leadership Program Director.
In a long-term career, Roy has owned minor league baseball, hockey, and football teams. He has sold his fight promotions company 4 times.
Anthony Flynn has been recognized by many as a Self-Discipline Strategist and Follow-Through expert. As a successful leader in the business world with numerous Fortune 100 giants and a pioneering executive in numerous, multi-million dollar non-profit ventures-- Mr. Flynn has a proven track record for converting ideas and theories to actionable achievements.
President and Founder of Trochia Ministries providing Christian discipleship online, a Teaching Pastor at Mariners Church, host of Uncharted Podcast, and CFO of J.D. Franklin Holdings.
He has served as senior vice-president for LifeWay Christian and authored the bestselling church leadership book, Simple Church.
Relationship researchers, clinicians and bestselling authors, including The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work.
Founder and past CEO of Mardel Christian and Education bookstores, and co-host of illumiNations, a collective impact alliance working to eradicate Bible poverty.
Chairman of the Board for the Museum of the Bible. Steve started working at Hobby Lobby when he graduated from high school when there were only 8 stores. Today Hobby Lobby has over 900 stores in 47 states.
George and Tondra Gregory have worked with many current and retired couples throughout the National Football League and started a marriage ministry called Journey for Life.
Halderman Companies is one of the largest family-owned professional farm management and real estate organizations in the United States.
Teays River Investments is a food and agribusiness company with over 1,200 employees.
Ray is also the Co-Founder of Truth at Work, an association which helps Christian business leaders build strong organizations, popular author, including The Janitor.
Psychologist, psychoanalyst, co-director of The Brookhaven Institute for Psychoanalysis and Christian Thought (BIPACT).
Psychologist, psychoanalyst, founding director of The Brookhaven Institute for Psychoanalysis and Christian Thought (BIPACT), author Toward Mutual Recognition, When the Roll Is Called.
Townsend Leadership Program Director
Leading over 1,000 staff members in 65 countries who serve athletes and coaches.
Townsend Leadership Program Director
Podcaster (This is Your Life), blogger, speaker, and the former chairman and CEO of Thomas Nelson. He wrote New York Times Best Seller, Platform: Get Noticed in a Noisy World.
Psychiatrist, speaker, author of The God-Shaped Brain.
The Gathering is a learning community of philanthropists motivated by their Christian faith. Previously, he was the Co-Founder and Partner at Praxis, a creative engine for redemptive entrepreneurship.
Teacher and author of Biblical Concepts for Christian Counseling, Board Member for the Narramore Christian Foundation.
Retired Founder and CEO of State National Companies, Inc., a leading provider of niche property and casualty insurance services.
Psychologist, best-selling author, including The Birth Order Book.
Defender Direct is a $500m security and home automation company and founder of Companies With a Mission.
Award winning psychiatrist, columnist, teacher and mental health advocate.
Chairman of The Mabee Foundation, M.S and an M.A. Psychology, M.S. , Counselor for 32 years.
Psychiatrist and bestselling author, including Blue Genes.
Kairos Company provides branding, strategy and public relations counsel to leaders and organizations.
Co-Host Discover the Word, Speaker, Author.
Zondervan is a division of HarperCollins Christian Publishing.
Townsend Leadership Program Director
Psychologist, bestselling author, including Mad About Us: Moving from Anger to Intimacy with Your Spouse.
Leadership expert, former pastor at Menlo Park Presbyterian Church and teaching pastor at Willow Creek Church. Author of several books, including If You Want to Walk on Water, You’ve Got to Get Out of the Boat.
Business consultant, speaker, popular author, including Unleashing the Power of Rubber Bands.
Psychologists, bestselling authors, including Saving Your Marriage Before It Starts.
Sacred Harvest Foundation is a ministry targeting Kingdom development worldwide.
Todd Peterson played for 13 years in the NFL. He has been chairman of different non-profits, interim CEO and a member of four private company boards.
Pastor. Bestselling author, The Emotionally Healthy Leader, Emotionally Healthy Spirituality, The Emotionally Healthy Church.
The Gathering is a learning community of philanthropists motivated by their Christian faith.
Authors, speakers, marriage & family strategists at LifeWay. Famous at Home help leaders build emotional intelligence and 22:6 Parenting.
Psychiatrist. Author of Anatomy of the Soul.
Professor of Clinical Psychology at Azusa Pacific University. Private practice clinical psychoanalyst and psychologist. Co-author of Lacanian Psychoanalysis and Eastern Orthodox Christian Anthropology in Dialogue.
Popular leadership speaker.
Telec is a company specializing in connectivity, and a futurist thought leader.
Consultant, author, founder of third largest Direct Marketing Agency, as a Private Equity partner, he has helped grow and sell five companies.
Writer, Author of the New York Times bestseller, The Shack.
The Townsend Institute is housed within Concordia University Irvine, a private, Lutheran university. Located in Southern California, Concordia serves over 4,000 students annually, on campus and online. Centered by a Christian worldview, and guided by the Great Commission, Concordia is home to a thoughtful and caring community of learners.
The Townsend Institute
Interested in learning more? Connect with one of our admissions counselors to learn more about the programs we offer.