Peña Search Recruits CEO for the Dallas Area Habitat for Humanity

April 16, 2024 – Peña Search has assisted in the recruitment of Ashley Brundage as the new CEO of the Dallas Area Habitat for Humanity. Travis Hillier and Cindy Maloney led the assignment. “We are thrilled to welcome Ashley O. Brundage to Dallas Area Habitat for Humanity as our new, and first woman CEO; she is a force for good with a proven track record of convening groups, building strong teams, and leading with collaboration and innovation,” said Ashley Sheetz, Habitat chair of the board of directors. “She is the exact person we need to take our organization into its next phase of growth and impact.”

Most recently, Ms. Brundage was the executive director of Housing Stability and senior vice president of community impact for United Way Dallas, where she worked for 17 years. As a fierce advocate for affordable housing and ending homelessness, she was responsible for spearheading United Way’s work in this space. In April 2020, Ms. Brundage formed the Dallas Rental Association Collaborative (DRAC), a city-wide collaboration with 16 community-based organizations, resulting in a contract award from the City of Dallas/CARES Act funding of almost $40 million to United Way. She also launched North Texas Cares, a funders collaborative of 47 foundations and United Ways across 16 counties. This effort resulted in $58.7 million in grants to more than 1,000 different non-profits.

Ms. Brundage also led the 2020 transformation and reconstitution of the board of directors for both Housing Forward (formerly Metro Dallas Homeless Alliance) and the All Neighbors Coalition Continuum of Care. The results of which have returned more than $100 million of federal, city, county and private dollars to the Continuum of Care. A committed community advocate, Ms. Brundage serves on several local boards, including serving as chair of the board of directors for the Dallas Housing Coalition and as key spokesperson for the group advocating for increased city bond funding into affordable housing.

“Dallas Habitat is part of a global network that creates financial freedom, stability, and a healthy environment for families and communities to thrive,” said Ms. Brundage. “I am so honored to be able to join the team of employees and volunteers who have been here, leading this incredibly meaningful, important work, and to amplify their work. By listening to and working alongside communities, nonprofits, donors, and corporate and public partners, the Dallas Habitat team and I look forward to serving our mission and our families.”

Headquartered in Dallas, Peña Search’s specialties include: non-profit organizations, mission driven organizations, foundations, higher education, independent schools, religious organizations and educational institutions, human services organizations, museums, collective impact organizations, professional and trade associations, art culture and humanities organizations, environment and animal welfare organizations, fundraising, chief financial officers, chief executive officers, healthcare organizations, chief development officers, and advocacy organizations.

Related: Peña Search Recruits Chief Development Officer for Healthy Futures of Texas

Mr. Hillier joined Peña Search in 2015. He conducts and supports searches at many different levels, and is committed to finding and placing the right leaders that will have a demonstrable impact in their communities and organizations. Mr. Hillier has search experience across a broad array of sectors and positions, bringing expertise to searches on behalf of educational organizations, those with religious affinities or affiliations, and agencies with international programmatic or fundraising components. He has also carved out a niche on the Peña Search team for his skill identifying development officers.

Since joining Peña Search, Ms. Maloney has worked on a variety of assignments, primarily focusing on C-suite executives, academic administrators, and fundraising positions. She has diverse knowledge of both the for- and non-profit sectors. Her expertise was honed not only through positions in financial services and revenue management at large companies such as American Airlines and Sabre Corp., but also in her volunteer experience on The Lamplighter School’s parent’s association board and with organizations such as Reading Partners.

Another Key Assignment

Peña Search also recently assisted in the recruitment of Shalaina Abioye as the new executive director of the Human Rights Initiative of North Texas (HRI). Bill Holston recently stepped down from his role after 11 years at the helm. Ms. Abioye joins HRI with more than a decade of experience leading immigrant-and-refugee-serving agencies. Most recently, she served as executive director for the Dallas office of the International Rescue Committee, where she launched her non-profit career in 2007. Ms. Abioye has also held leadership positions at Catholic Charities Fort Worth, and Educational First Steps. Her prior experience also includes serving as an adjunct professor and research consulting.

Founded in 2000 by social worker and philanthropist Serena Simmons Connelly and attorney Elizabeth Healy, the Human Rights Initiative of North Texas provides free legal assistance and social services to asylum seekers and immigrants fleeing human rights abuses.

Related: Peña Search Recruits Chief Development Officer for Healthy Futures of Texas

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

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