Client Demographics

Nonprofit HR Practice Area: Search
Location: National
Sector: Nonprofit
Mission Type: Human services
Staff Size: 251–500 full-time employees

Type of Engagement: Executive Search

Engagement Scenario

The client organization engaged Impact Search Advisors in an Executive Search for their President & Chief Executive Officer (CEO). Their previous CEO announced he was retiring after being with the organization for over 30 years. Impact Search Advisors was selected because of differentiators that include experience with CEO placements and recruiting diverse candidates.


 Volunteers packaging food for a human services organization.

Search Duration: Three and a half months

Engagement Details

The new leader will take on this role following a successful CEO that had been with the organization for over 30 years. This client is part of a multi-affiliate national organization that required that a representative from the national staff sit on the Search Committee. While Impact Search Advisors was selected to conduct this search, the parent organization also offers a similar search service to their local affiliate.


  1. There were additional components to address to ensure that the search process aligned with charter requirements from the national office.
  2. Two applicants in the search process had close ties with the organization. One was an internal candidate as a member of the staff team, and the other worked for a foundation that partnered with the client organization.


This search was unique because of the significance of the legacy of the outgoing CEO. Finding a candidate to fill these “shoes” required an intense review of applicants and critical decisions from the Search Committee.

After implementing an exhaustive search that included a total of 54 diverse applicants, the ISA team members working with this search presented the top ten candidates that reflected five females and five males, including four individuals of color. Six candidates were invited to first round interviews. Three finalists were invited to the final round of interviews.

The final candidate that was selected for the role was the internal staff member at the organization. Progressing over the years, this candidate had the support of the staff and demonstrated, through the interview process, that they were the best candidate. Though the placement was an internal candidate, the ISA Senior Consultant, in partnership with the client Search Committee, implemented steps to ensure the process was fair and equitable for all parties.

Additionally, the search was completed in three and a half months, which was earlier than the estimated timeline of three to five months. The Board Chair shared that this was the best search process he had ever participated in and thanked Impact Search Advisors for partnering with their organization.

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