Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name



Business Administration

Committee Chair

Mickey B. Smith, Ph.D.


Matthew Howard, Janaki Gooty, Robyn Brouer


This dissertation explores the consequences of mega-threats - defined by Leigh and Melwani (2019, p. 564) as large-scale negative identity related episodes that receive significant media attention - on the exchange relationship between employees and supervisors in mixed race dyads. Drawing specific attention to mega-threats centered around Black Americans, I propose that race-based traumatic stress leads minority (i.e., Black) subordinates, to experience a decrease in leader-member exchange (LMX) quality with their majority identifying (i.e., White) leader. I further propose that leader intercultural sensitivity will moderate the relationship between race-based traumatic stress and LMX quality, with high leader intercultural sensitivity helping to attenuate the negative influence of race based traumatic stress on LMX quality. Utilizing a vignette study, I empirically examine the novel idea that LMX can fluctuate, challenging the long-held belief that LMX is ecumenically stable.

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