About Us

Pearl Street, the search firm with purpose, is an award-winning, national, retained executive search and talent strategy firm serving the nonprofit, education, and healthcare sectors. We work across function areas and bring an especially deep expertise in fundraising and advancement. Women-owned and led by a diverse group of professionals deeply committed to equity in search, Pearl Street seeks to disrupt the traditional search dynamic by practicing radical empathy; listening and learning from others’ unique perspectives, lived experiences, and identities; and committing to transparency for all stakeholders. This purposeful approach informs every facet of our search process as we strive to build real relationships and deliver an unparalleled, values-rooted service that honors the whole person.

Clients return to Pearl Street time and again because of our ability to connect on a human level and because of our expert delivery of talent consulting and recruitment services. We make this work easy for our partners, and we care for every detail on their behalf. Equally important, we help candidates articulate their purpose so that we can guide them to client missions that truly resonate. We believe that when you care enough to connect people to their purpose, organizations thrive.

For three consecutive years, Women of Color in Fundraising & Philanthropy (WOC) has named Pearl Street one of the Top Search Firms for Women of Color; Hunt Scanlon Media has honored us as one of America’s Top 250 Executive Search Firms for 2024, as well as a Top 50 Recruiter for Higher Education and a Top 60 Recruiter for Nonprofits; and Forbes recognized Pearl Street in 2024 as one of America’s Best Executive Recruiting Firms.

Achievements

Recent Searches

You can find current searches of Pearl Street Collective here: https://pearlstreetcollective.com/searches/

Solutions And Expertise

Pearl Street provides a hands-on, deeply personalized approach for clients and candidates alike, focusing on a limited number of engagements to meet the unique needs and timetables of each. While we work across function areas, we possess a deep expertise in fundraising and advancement having placed hundreds of leaders in organizations ranging from universities, colleges, and independent schools to hospitals and medical centers to nonprofits in the areas of social justice, youth support, disease advocacy and research, human services, tech for good, food equity, and more.

Our customized approach and total investment ensure a more thorough understanding of a client’s culture, values, and strategic goals. It also allows us to spend more time with individual candidates, helping them understand and evaluate an opportunity as well as their own motivations and career goals, which makes for a more affirming experience all around.

Everything we do is fueled by our mission to connect people with their purpose so that organizations can thrive.

Our Commitment to Building Diverse Teams

Our clients serve a beautifully diverse and interconnected humanity. As partners and allies, but more importantly, as human beings, we are intent on leading with the values of diversity, equity, inclusion, belonging, justice, and accessibility (DEIBJA) as we help advance organizational missions because we know that diverse teams pave the way to positive social change.

We believe that talent strategists are in a unique position to influence how organizations think about DEIBJA and we take seriously our opportunity to drive equal access to opportunity by building, supporting, and championing diverse, high-performing teams. We take the time to understand what diversity means to each client, and then we work diligently to create diverse candidate pools and to establish an environment that increases hires from those pools.

Pearl Street is committed to taking deliberate and specific actions to advance equity in hiring by:

Leading with DEIBJA principles to facilitate dialogue that helps clients reframe the way they think about talent and organizational culture.

Challenging our own implicit and explicit biases through honest conversation and proactively supporting our team’s learning and personal growth in DEIBJA matters.
Identifying and checkpointing our search processes against DEIBJA imperatives.
Employing deliberate sourcing techniques and building relationships with affinity networks to develop diverse candidate pools.
Fundamentally valuing, respecting, and honoring experiences that are different from our own.

Review our year-over-year diversity metrics here.

Solutions
  • Data Analy./Mrkt. Intell.
  • Executive Search
  • Recruitment Research
  • Talent Strategy Consulting
Industries
  • Associations
  • Clinical Research
  • Colleges/Universities
  • Cultural Arts
  • Education
  • Family Offices
  • Foundations
  • Higher Education
  • K-12
  • Non-Profit
Functions
  • Board/Governance
  • Business Development
  • C-Level
  • C-Suite
  • CEO/President
  • Communications/PR
  • Data/Analytics
  • Development
  • Diversity & Inclusion
  • General Management
  • GM/Operations
  • Human Resources
  • Marketing & Sales

News Briefings

Pearl Street Collective Recruits Chief Development Officer for the Elaine Marieb College of Nursing at University Of Massachusetts Amherst

Virtually every industry needs top-drawer chief development officers. CDOs play a key role in planning, coordinating, and administering capital campaigns, corporate giving, and galvanizing new donors while keeping previous funders content. Implementing funding strategies that “keep the lights on,” according to recruiters specializing in the function, is job No. 1. Boston-based executive search firm Pearl Street

Pearl Street Collective Recruits Chief Development Officer for Treehouse

Boston-based executive search firm Pearl Street Collective has assisted in the recruitment of Laura Perez Hamilton as chief development officer of Treehouse, a Seattle, WA-based non-profit focused on the specific educational needs of youth in foster care. Ms. Perez Hamilton brings over 20 years of advancement and development leadership including major gift fundraising experience to her

Pearl Street Collective Fills Key Position for Northeastern University

Boston-based executive search firm Pearl Street Collective has assisted in the recruitment of Chris DeMeo to the newly created leadership role of associate vice president of marketing and communications for the office of university advancement at Northeastern University. Co-founders and managing partners Adele Mezher and Maeve Clifford led the assignment. Mr. DeMeo has a track record

Pearl Street Collective Seeks Two CDOs for University of Massachusetts Amherst Foundation

Boston-based executive search firm Pearl Street Collective has been enlisted to help fill two key roles for the University of Massachusetts Amherst Foundation (UMAF). The non-profit is seeking chief development officers for the university’s Elaine Marieb College of Nursing and its Commonwealth Honors College. Leading the assignments are Adele Mezher, co-founder and managing partner, and

Press Releases

PEARL STREET RECRUITS CHIEF DEVELOPMENT OFFICER FOR THE COMMONWEALTH HONORS COLLEGE AT UNIVERSITY OF MASSACHUSETTS AMHERST

BOSTON & SAN DIEGO, April 1, 2024 – After completing a national search on behalf of the University of Massachusetts Amherst Foundation, Pearl Street has recruited Catherine Rider as the new Executive Director of Development and Chief Development Officer for the Commonwealth Honors College. In her new role, Catherine is working alongside Dean Mari Castañeda

PEARL STREET RECRUITS CRYSTAL NEUHAUSER AS CHIEF DEVELOPMENT OFFICER FOR THE ELAINE MARIEB COLLEGE OF NURSING AT UNIVERSITY OF MASSACHUSETTS AMHERST

BOSTON & SAN DIEGO, March 29, 2024 – Pearl Street was honored to partner with the UMass Amherst Foundation in the search for a new Executive Director of Development and Chief Development Officer for the Elaine Marieb College of Nursing at University of Massachusetts Amherst. Managing Partner Adele Mezher led the process that resulted in

Laura Perez Hamilton joins Treehouse as Chief Development Officer

Laura Perez Hamilton has been placed by Pearl Street as the new Chief Development Officer at Treehouse, the only nonprofit in Washington State focused on the specific educational needs of youth in foster care. Laura brings over twenty years of advancement and development leadership including major gift fundraising experience to her new role. She will

Felecia Webb Joins PAI as Chief Strategy Officer, Philanthropy and Partnerships

We are excited to welcome Felecia Webb to Partnership on AI as the organization’s Chief Strategy Officer, Philanthropy and Partnerships (CSOPP), a new executive leadership position reporting to CEO Rebecca Finlay. In this role, Felecia will be responsible for managing PAI’s strategic efforts across philanthropy and marketing. She will also support the design of a

Kevin Ruiz Joins Northeastern in Miami

Northeastern University announces Kevin Ruiz as a founding member of the Miami campus with responsibility for leading strategic partnership development and positioning the campus as an asset in greater Miami. With this appointment, Kevin becomes a Director within the Northeastern University Global Launch Services team and will contribute to the success of this growing global