Bill’s Story

William Barnett, Ph.D.

Founder and Consultant

Any fair observer of my professional career would conclude that I’m still trying to decide what to do when I grow up.

The Short Version

Before college, I worked on farms in central Indiana, but found that rather hot and dusty. After completing graduate school, I served as a faculty member and college administrator.

Upon retiring from higher education, I founded my own writing and consulting business that served clients in healthcare, transportation, medical device technology, and non-profit organizations.

And lately, I’ve added a coaching and consulting business to serve faculty, administrators, and colleges. Boredom has not been a problem!

The Long Version

I began my journey in higher education by attending Wabash College in Crawfordsville, Indiana. I earned a B.A. degree with a major in English and minors in religion and psychology. Upon graduation, I attended Perkins School of Theology at Southern Methodist University where I earned a B.D. degree (a.k.a., M.Div.) before enrolling in the Divinity School of the University of Chicago for a Ph.D. in historical theology.

Emerging from graduate school, I encountered an extremely tight job market for college professors. In response, I took the LSAT exam and was admitted to law school. Before classes began, however, a teaching position opened up at Adrian College in Michigan which I accepted (the thought of going back to school at that point nauseated me).

Following a year at Adrian, I accepted a position teaching religious studies at Le Moyne College in Syracuse, NY, where I spent the next 28 years. Le Moyne was a good fit for me. I served as chair of my department and, later, as Dean of Studies and finally as Academic Vice President.

After Le Moyne, I started a copywriting business and moved with my spouse, Jenny, to Connecticut. Working with clients, I began to learn about content marketing. When Trinity College invited me to become Dean of Graduate Studies, I accepted primarily because that position would require substantial attention to program promotion.

When I retired from Trinity, I returned to my writing and consulting business, Barnett Writer LLC, that Jenny and I managed together. In 2021, we left the Connecticut winters behind and moved to Raleigh, NC, where I founded Sage Leader LLC in 2022, a coaching and consulting service for college faculty and administrators.

Because of this winding journey, I am truly fortunate. I learned much from talented colleagues and students along the way, and I experienced the business world first-hand in several sectors and capacities. Bringing these two facets together, I am now able to offer informed and broad perspective to college faculty and administrators who grapple daily with the grave challenges facing higher education. If you feel perplexed, overwhelmed, and anxious in your role as an academic professional, please know that you’re not alone. Get in touch by registering for a free 30-minute discovery conversation to learn how I might help.


Lead Researcher

As the namesake of Aslan in C. S. Lewis’s Narnia series, I guard against the evil that lurks beyond our hearth. I’m a compassionate, but not tame, companion, who provides comfort and perspective for the humans who live with me.

Often, I feel that they misunderstand my intentions since they try to bar my access to the computer keyboard (they obviously failed this time!). Nevertheless, they feed me (not as much as I would like); so I will allow them to remain for now.

For all consulting needs, I advise you to contact the humans via the white light box. Leave me free to hunt mice, sharpen my claws, and take long naps.

Content marketing strategy, this is our story

Sign up for your free 30-minute discovery call.

Subscribe to My Higher Ed Success Newsletter for Exclusive Content

%d bloggers like this: