January 20, 2021 – With the coronavirus crisis still upon us, chief human resources officers are stepping up at businesses across the country, playing a vital role in helping organizations navigate what is looking to be an even greater challenge than the Great Recession. As a recent article in The Economist put it, CHROs “keep employees healthy; maintain their morale; and oversee a vast remote-working experiment.” As companies retrench, these leaders are also considering whether, when and how to lay workers off. Executive recruiters across the business landscape report that searches for these C-suite executives will only continue to rise.
Recently, HR executive search and management consulting firm accelHRate placed Meghan Henson as CHRO of Avantor in Radnor, PA. The search was led by CEO Kim Shanahan and managing partner Kelly McPherson. “Meghan is a strategic leader who brings extensive global experience to Avantor’s impressive leadership team made up of executives from other well-respective Fortune 500 companies,” said Ms. Shanahan. “She has joined a company whose mission is important to all of us – to set science in motion to create a better world. This includes working on critical solutions helping life science companies detect, research and fast-track treatments for the COVID-19 and related diseases.”
Ms. Henson previously served as CHRO for both XPO Logistics and Chubb Insurance. Earlier in her career she held various HR leadership roles at PepsiCo globally and was a management consultant at Deloitte and Willis Towers Watson. Ms. Henson was also a William Davidson Institute fellow at Vietnam National Coal Corp. in Hanoi. She also served as an instructor at ACTY English School in Kyoto, Japan and Jinan University in Guangzhou, China. Ms. Henson earned an MBA and master’s degree in public policy from University of Michigan and a bachelor’s degree in East Asian studies and political science from University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Avantor is a global provider of mission-critical products and services to customers in the biopharma, healthcare, education and government, and advanced technologies and applied materials industries. The company’s global footprint enables it to serve more than 225,000 customer locations and provides extensive access to research laboratories and scientists in more than 180 countries. In May 2019, Avantor became the largest healthcare IPO in U.S. history and is now listed on the New York Stock Exchange under ticker symbol AVTR.
Proven HR Recruiters
Headquartered in Herndon, VA, accelHRate is focused on placing chief human resources officers, financial officers and boards of directors. The firm’s team has placed hundreds of high impact HR executives across all industries and geographies. The firm was established in 2014.
accelHRate Recruits Chief People Officer for U.S. Humane Society
accelHRate placed former Washington Nationals HR executive Alexa Herndon as the first chief people officer of The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS). Ms. Herndon was most recently was vice president of HR for the Washington Nationals baseball franchise where she established a strategic HR function as the franchise emerged from its start-up phase to become World Series champions in 2019.
Ms. Shanahan brings more than 25 years of business and executive search experience to the organization. She has partnered with hundreds of CEOs, board members and CHROs across multiple industries and geographies to place HR, CEO and board of director talent. Previously, she spent eight years with Korn Ferry, where she led the HR center of expertise as senior client partner and simultaneously served as managing partner for the Northern Virginia office. She was also an active member of the CEO and board practice.
Ms. McPherson brings close to 20 years of recruiting and management experience to the firm. In her role at accelHRate she focuses on chief human resources officers, heads of total rewards and heads of talent roles. Her clients range from Fortune 500 organizations to private equity portfolio companies across a range of industries, including technology, healthcare, B2B services, financial services, defense, industrial, retail and consumer services.
Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; and Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media