August 13, 2018 – Executive search, leadership consulting and culture shaping services provider Heidrick & Struggles International has named San Francisco-based partner Scott Atkinson to lead its venture capital practice. He succeeds Rebecca Foreman Janjic, who earlier this year was appointed the global practice managing partner for the firm’s global technology and services practice.
“Heidrick & Struggles has a rich and deep history working with venture capital firms and maturing technology start-ups needing to fully harness senior-level talent who can accelerate growth,” said Krishnan Rajagopalan, president and CEO. “Scott is well positioned to lead this specialty practice with a proven track record in senior-level leadership searches for venture capital, private equity and investment banking firms.”
Mr. Atkinson, who joined Heidrick in 2010, has led searches for chief financial officers, chief executive officers, board directors and executives for leading publicly traded, private equity and venture capital-backed companies experiencing growth, innovation, restructuring and global expansion. Previously, he served as a senior member of the legal team and human resources group at CollabNet, a venture-backed provider of enterprise cloud development solutions.
“There is incredible opportunity to help venture-backed companies navigate the leadership and talent challenges that come with rapid growth,” said Mr. Atkinson. “Heidrick & Struggles has a talented group of leadership advisors who are passionate about helping venture-backed and growth-oriented companies shape the future, and I look forward to further building our capabilities in the sector.”
Heidrick’s venture capital practice finds, follows and recruits the future leaders of the industry’s emerging growth companies. It specializes in the leading areas of technology, including: mobility, cloud, internet, Big Data and analytics, clean tech, green tech and bio tech.
Heidrick recently announced a series of changes to its leadership team. Mark R. Harris joined Heidrick as CFO, succeeding Richard W. Pehlke who retired in March. Mr. Harris had been CFO at Hercules Capital, a publicly traded business development company, with responsibility for the finance, accounting, operations, treasury, legal and investor relations. Stephen Beard, Heidrick’s executive vice president, general counsel and chief administrative officer, has also chosen to leave the firm, to pursue other opportunities. The chief administrative officer role will be eliminated. Kamau A. Coar, vice president, associate general counsel, has been promoted to general counsel. In this role, Mr. Coar will be responsible for the firm’s legal and regulatory matters globally.
Heidrick & Struggles Launches Cross-Industry Innovation Network
The firm launched a new cross-industry corporate innovation network that it is calling the Game-Changer Collaborative, which enables members to collaborate around emerging technologies and external innovation opportunities.
New Practice Leaders
Heidrick recently appointed Amy Goldfinger and Mike Theilmann as co-leaders of its global human resources officers (CHRO) practice, based in New York City and Dallas. This follows the departure of Dan Kaplan who left the firm to lead Korn Ferry’s CHRO practice.
Ms. Goldfinger has been with Heidrick for 11 years advising clients in HR transformation, accelerated leadership, talent management strategy and execution, leadership assessment and development, and onboarding. She leads senior-level HR searches including CHRO, heads of talent management, heads of organizational development, chief learning officers, heads of rewards and heads of recruiting for companies in every industry.
Mr. Theilmann joined the firm last June with more than 25 years of global experience across retail, hospitality, consumer goods and venture capital. He had served as CHRO of J.C. Penney where he partnered with the CEO to accelerate growth through talent and a customer-centric focus.
Heidrick & Struggles Launches New Recruiting Practice Focused on AI
Citing a shortage of leaders with the ability to apply an understanding of AI to transform an organization’s business model, Heidrick & Struggles launched a specialty practice focused on AI.
In addition, Ron Lumbra becomes managing partner for the firm’s centers of excellence, responsible for the functional practices and the private equity practice within executive search, the firm’s strategic accounts, and H Labs, the enterprise-wide product development function delivering validated diagnostics for the firm’s client teams. Previously, Mr. Lumbra had been regional leader, Americas.
Rebecca Foreman Janjic has been appointed global managing partner for the firm’s global technology & services practice, succeeding Mr. Cullen. Based in the San Francisco office, she also co-leads Heidrick’s big data & analytics specialty practice. Her own executive search work focuses on recruitment of C-suite and VP-level executives within software, internet and technology services companies.
Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor; and Andrew W. Mitchell, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media