July 10, 2009 – Developed by leaders in executive search and corporate learning, and endorsed by global executive search consultants, Canaan Ridge – The Center for Professional Development has launched an executive development program for retained executive search consultants. Canaan Ridge’s inaugural program – headlined by Gerard R. Roche, chairman emeritus of Heidrick & Struggles – will be in Washington, D.C., on October 18-20. The program is being limited to 25 executive search consultants and this first session of the D.C. program will focus on building and improving client reputation and sales effectiveness. “I am thrilled to announce the creation of Canaan Ridge and our commitment to provide serious learning for the exceptional executive search consultant,” said Canaan Ridge founder Bob Benson. “We’ve assembled a top-notch team with incredible experience in retained executive search, corporate learning and academia to develop a program in concert with a group of A-list faculty who will make it meaningful for today’s search consultants. We all believe that continuous learning deepens relationships and accelerates personal growth, performance and potential.” Mr. Benson is a former senior leader at Spencer Stuart in both Europe and North America and the former chairman of Boardroom Consultants and Slayton Search Partners. Rounding out the team of Canaan Ridge are founding partners: Isabel Witte, an expert in executive coaching whose more than 20 years in executive search has included experience with Heidrick & Struggles; Garland West, president of WestWord Communications and formerly a senior advisor in the office of the chairman at Cargill; Jan Wilmott, former executive director of the UBS Leadership Institute and head of its global talent management and development unit; Janet Jones-Parker, a former president of the Association of Executive Search Consultants (AESC); Irene W. Dilworth, who has held executive recruitment roles with two global search firms as well as with Capital One Financial Corporation; and H. James Krauser, who has held a number of leadership roles at Spencer Stuart. The Canaan Ridge program features four, two-and-a-half day sessions over an 18 month period and consists of structured course work and personalized instruction interspersed with 18 hours of one-on-one coaching and/or mentoring, augmented by online learning.