McCormack+Kristel Assists The Funders Network with CEO Search

December 19, 2023 – Executive search firm McCormack+Kristel recently assisted in the placement of Dion Cartwright as the new president and CEO of The Funders Network in Coral Gables, FL. Managing partner Michelle Kristel led the assignment with search consultant Zaria Davis. “When TFN president and CEO Pat Smith announced her retirement this summer, we began the daunting but admittedly exciting work of finding a successor – one with the vision, values and strategic dexterity needed to lead our network of changemakers committed to environmental, economic and racial justice,” said Don Hickman, chair, TFN board of directors. “It turns out we didn’t have to look very far. I’m thrilled to announce that Dion Cartwright – TFN’s senior director of equity initiatives and leadership development and head of our PLACES Fellowship program – will be the next president and CEO of TFN.”

“I’m extraordinarily excited about the next chapter for TFN under Dion’s leadership,” said Ms. Smith, who announced her planned retirement in June. “It’s been a pleasure having the opportunity to work with Dion, and I’ve benefitted from her counsel on both a personal and professional level. I’m confident she is the right person to help guide TFN toward the future.”

Ms. Cartwright worked for the Baltimore Community Foundation’s Community Investment team for 15 years before joining TFN. She currently serves on the board of directors for Emerging Practitioners in Philanthropy and on the United Philanthropy Forum’s racial equity committee. Ms. Cartwright previously served as the inaugural board chair of the Baltimore Children and Youth Fund, a non-profit organization created to support Baltimore’s youth.

“As both a PLACES Alum and a member of TFN’s leadership team, I’ve witnessed the tremendous progress we’ve made in advocating for community-led solutions and equity-focused actions that address an escalating climate crisis, widening wealth gap and other issues critical to our collective wellbeing,” said Ms. Cartwright. “The growth I’ve seen is amazing, and the opportunities I see ahead are inspiring. I am truly honored to lead TFN as we work to create a political home for philanthropic leadership that is boldly and unapologetically committed to advancing racial equity, inclusion and justice.”

The Funders’ Network exists to inspire, strengthen and expand funding and philanthropic leadership that yield environmentally sustainable, socially equitable and economically prosperous regions and communities.

Serving Non-Profits

McCormack+Kristel was started in 1993 as McCormack & Associates with the mission of recruiting senior leadership for the many research, advocacy and human services organizations growing exponentially in response to AIDS pandemic. Diversity recruiting has long been on the firm’s agenda. With the advent of effective treatments for HIV/AIDS, and the diminishing needs of many of these organizations, the firm broadened its client base into areas like social justice; healthcare; women’s issues; higher education; gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender; civil rights; and more.

Related: The LGBTQ Center Long Beach Taps McCormack+Kristel to Find New Leader

Four years ago, founding partner Joseph A. McCormack formed a new business partnership with Ms. Kristel, who joined the firm in 2013 as an associate. The firm has offices in New York City and Palm Springs, CA. McCormack+Kristel clients have included the ACLU, the Los Angeles LGBT Center, TransForm, Planned Parenthood, SAGE, and the Tides Foundation, among others.

Last year, Mr. McCormack retired. Ms. Kristel continues to run the firm’s national practice. Ms. Kristel is the former executive director of In The Life Media (ITLM), a non-profit organization producing social change media to raise awareness of issues related to gender, HIV/AIDS, and LGBT rights.

McCormack+Kristel Recruits Executive Director for Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority
McCormack+Kristel has assisted in the recruitment of Va Lecia Adams Kellum as the new executive director of the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority (LAHSA). Managing partner Michelle Kristel led the assignment. Heidi Marston resigned from the role in April due to disagreements with the agency’s board of commissioners over pay for lower-level staff. In September, Kristina Dixon and Molly Rysman, who served as acting co-executive directors since April, returned to their former roles with LAHSA, and Stephen David Simon, who heads the Los Angeles Department on Disability, was appointed interim executive director.

Dr. Davis has been with McCormack+Kristel for more than a year. She also serves as director of advocacy for the Chicago Community Bond Fund and as leadership and search consultant for New Direction Coaching & Consulting. Her background includes work as senior associate for the Pretrial Justice Institute and as executive director of Lincoln Heights Outreach Inc.

Recent Assignments

McCormack+Kristel recently recruited Carlo Giovanni as the new chief people officer for the Los Angeles LGBT Center, which fights to advance civil rights and freedoms for LGBTQ people domestically and internationally through education, advocacy, and community organizing. “Join us in congratulating Carlo Giovanni on his new role as the chief people officer at the Los Angeles LGBT Center,” McCormack+Kristel said. “In this role, Carlo will modernize and optimize people-centered experiences for employees and volunteers across the organization and work with staff throughout the organization to establish a culture that reflects the center’s values and DEI principles.”

The Los Angeles LGBT Center also recently retained McCormack+Kristel to lead in its search for a new CFO. The search firm is seeking candidates with a passion for the center’s work and its mission to make the world a better place for LGBTQ+ people. Reporting to the CEO, the CFO directly manages the accounting, finance, tax, cash, and business development functions of the center. Providing critical analysis and strategy development, the CFO is a trusted advisor to the CEO and board of directors and a key member of the senior executive team.

Related: McCormack+Kristel Recruits Executive Director for Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice

Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Executive Editor; Lily Fauver, Senior Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media

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