February 3, 2021 – Executive search, leadership consulting and culture shaping services provider Heidrick & Struggles has appointed Kamau Coar to the newly created role of chief inclusion officer and Jenni Hibbert as global managing partner, head of executive search go-to-market. This is part of the Heidrick’s long-term strategic plans to accelerate business growth and strengthen its focus on diversity and the firm’s workplace culture, said the search firm. The new leaders will report to president and CEO Krishnan Rajagopalan and work closely with the firm’s management committee and board of directors to advance its strategic plans.
“We continue to transform our business and build for the future,” said Mr. Rajagopalan. “As we progress on this journey, our leadership and workplace culture remain foundational to our success. We have a longstanding commitment to developing talent from within our firm, and these new roles and leadership changes put us in an even stronger position to support our employees while delivering world-class advisory services to our clients.”
Mr. Coar, who will also retain his current role as chief legal officer, will now also be responsible for shaping the firm’s diversity and inclusion efforts, including talent development, employee resources and culture. He will work with leaders across the firm to create strategies, programs and initiatives that help ensure diverse representation and further strengthen the firm’s inclusive culture across all levels.
“Kamau has been a champion for inclusion throughout his career. This new role is both timely and crucial as our firm advances with a sharpened focus on diversity and inclusion,” said Mr. Rajagopalan. “While we have made many important strides forward, Kamau brings a new lens and accountability to helping create a more diverse and equitable workforce and an open environment and culture where all employees can succeed and thrive. Our investments in diversity, equity and inclusion are critical to amplifying our entrepreneurial culture, and to driving innovation through a workforce empowered to bring the full power of new and diverse ideas, perspectives and talents.”
In her new role, Ms. Hibbert will focus on deepening client relationships, finding new ways to scale the firm’s services globally, and identifying new strategic growth opportunities. Most recently, she served as global practice managing partner for the financial services practice, Heidrick’s largest in size and scale.
“Jenni brings proven leadership experience to her new role, and has a strong grasp on the needs of our clients, not only in financial services, but also at the board and C-suite levels across multiple industries and sectors,” said Mr. Rajagopalan. “In this role, she brings her skills as a data-driven leader toward growing and scaling our accounts globally, delivering a broader integrated suite of services with Heidrick Consulting and expanding into new markets and industry sectors.”
In addition to these new roles, the following leadership changes have been implemented as part of the firm’s ongoing leadership development and succession planning efforts:
- Alyse Bodine, partner, global head of financial officers practice.
- Sam Burman, partner, global practice managing partner, disruptive innovators team, and head of specialty practices.
- Tim Dietlin, partner, global practice managing partner, healthcare and life sciences practice.
- Jonathan Graham, partner, global practice managing partner, industrial practice.
- Tom Murray, partner, global practice managing partner, global technology services.
- Victoria Reese, partner, global practice managing partner, corporate officers practice; Ms. Reese also continues to lead the legal, risk, compliance and government affairs practice.
- Todd Taylor, partner, global practice managing partner, financial services practice.
Diversity & Inclusion Practice
Last year, Heidrick & Struggles launched a diversity and inclusion (D&I) practice. It is led by Lyndon Taylor, partner-in-charge of the firm’s Chicago office; along with Jennifer Flock, partner, Europe D&I practice consulting lead; and Christianne Garofalo, partner, Americas D&I practice consulting lead. “More so than at any other time, leaders today need to be agile, responsive and inclusive, seeking input from executives with different viewpoints, experiences and backgrounds,” said Mr. Rajagopalan.
“During this COVID-19 pandemic, we cannot overstate how critical it is to have diverse voices and inclusive leadership across an organization. Our launched D&I practice brings our consultants’ expertise in recruiting and developing top diverse talent together with our in-depth experience in creating inclusive leadership teams and workplace cultures to help organizations deliver demonstrable change and accelerate performance, both in times of crisis and for the future.”
Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; and Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media