October 20, 2020 – With the coronavirus crisis disrupting the world economy, chief people 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, chief people officers “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.
Global HR search firm Frederickson Partners recently recruited human resources veteran Leander LeSure to Detroit-headquartered StockX as chief people officer. “Scott Cutler and the investors and employees at StockX are building a world class, one of a kind company,” said Valerie Frederickson, founder and CEO of Frederickson Partners. “We conducted this search across the U.S. and got the most forward-thinking HR executives in play for this role. We’re thrilled to see Leander LeSure join their team and wish them all great continued success.”
“We are excited to have Leander LeSure join us in this new role,” said Scott Cutler, CEO of StockX. “As chief people officer, Leander will be a key player in our executive team working to enable StockX’s corporate growth strategy. He brings an impressive track record as a global HR executive and c-suite leader who has delivered transformative business results at industry-leading companies. Leander brings the deep experience in technology, consumer products and financial services required to define and execute on the overarching people strategy for StockX, supporting our unique mission and culture.”
Mr. LeSure has over 20 years of global executive HR experience. He was previously executive vice president and chief human resources officer at Herman Miller, a global provider of furnishings and related technologies and services. Before that he served as senior vice president and CHRO at Getty Images, leading the company’s global HR functions and providing strategic counsel to the CEO, executive team and board of directors. Mr. LeSure has also held senior HR executive roles at Western Union, American Express, Marsh & McLennan and PwC. He also served as a communications specialist in the U.S. Navy.
StockX’s platform connects buyers and sellers of sneakers, apparel, accessories, collectibles and electronics using the pricing mechanics of the world’s stock markets. Founded by Dan Gilbert, Josh Luber and Greg Schwartz in 2015, the company employs over 800 people in more than 10 offices and authentication centers around the world and facilitates sales in more than 200 countries and territories. In 2019, the founders recruited e-commerce veteran and long-time investor Scott Cutler to serve as CEO and assemble a top team of C-suite tech talent.
“StockX is a truly dynamic company that is actively re-defining e-commerce,” said Mr. LeSure. “I’m excited and honored to join this team, which has shown extraordinary leadership creating and growing this new model and making it a success, while demonstrating commitment to diversity and equity, and to a global people strategy. I look forward to supporting StockX’s strategic business objectives through HR leadership.”
Veteran HR Consultants
Founded in 1995, Frederickson Partners has completed over 2,500 HR executive searches and HR consulting engagements, maintaining relationships with more than 10,000 rising and established HR executives worldwide. Specializing in the placement of chief human resources officers/ chief people officers and their teams for high-growth employers, the firm also provides HR strategy, consulting and thought leadership.
Based in Menlo Park, CA, the firm is deeply rooted in the technology sector, with experience in biotech, clean energy, cloud and data storage, e-commerce, fintech, gaming, hardware, IoT, media, semiconductors and telecommunications.
Chief People Officer Recruiting
Executive search firms have been stepping up their efforts to assist companies across the nation to find new chief people officers. Here are a look at few recent searches from the Hunt Scanlon Media archives:
HR executive search and management consulting firm accelHRate placed former Washington Nationals HR executive Alexa Herndon as the first chief people officer of The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS). Kimberly Shanahan, founding president and chief executive officer of the search firm, led the assignment along with managing partner and co-founder Kelly McPherson.
This prestigious non-profit organization regards the role as a linchpin for delivering on its mission of inspiring and empowering people to become agents of change. The position provides an ideal opportunity for a sophisticated, business-savvy, innovative, forward-thinking leader to help advance the organization to the next stage of its development, says the recruitment firm. Let’s take a closer look at this important search just getting underway.
Chicago-based Hanold Associates HR & Diversity Executive Search has placed Michele Meyer-Shipp as chief people and culture officer for Major League Baseball. Jason Hanold, CEO and co-managing partner of the search firm, led the assignment along with partner Keri Gavin. “Michele is an exceptional leader and an inspirational person,” said Mr. Hanold. “She will have an incredibly positive impact on Major League Baseball in this newly created role within the commissioner’s office.”
Executive search firm Furst Group, which serves the healthcare and insurance industries, placed Jackie Tischler as the new chief people officer for BJC Healthcare in St. Louis. Vice president Jessica Homann led the assignment. Ms. Tischler succeeds John Beatty, who last year announced he would be retiring. The search included healthcare professionals as well as leadership from other complex, change-oriented, and consumer-centric industries such as retail, technology, and hospitality/services, according to the recruiting firm. This resulted in 73 percent of candidates having multi-industry backgrounds, said Ms. Homann.
Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; and Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media