Christopher Butler


Christopher N. Butler, Ph.D., one of our most experienced consultants, has completed over 90 executive searches at a range of institutions, including the University of Alabama, Gonzaga University, the Phi Beta Kappa Society, California State University Northridge, Xavier University of Louisiana, the WASC Senior College and University Commission, and the University of Missouri. These searches have included chief executive officers, provosts and the full range of cabinet-level vice presidents, and deans of major academic units. Along with executive positions, he has also completed searches for endowed chairs at institutions looking to grow and strengthen faculty research capacities.
Trained as a cultural anthropologist with a Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Dr. Butler has worked with diverse and historically marginalized populations, including during fieldwork while living within the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma. With that professional background and perspective, he initiates searches by meeting with and listening to the perspectives of a broad range of stakeholder groups to develop search material and strategies that speak to the unique culture of each institution. This attention to culture, place, and mission allows him to search for candidates who are strong matches for that unique institution and its needs, as well as to present and discuss a rich sense of the institution to candidates and nominators.
These strategies and his personal commitment to advancing leadership in higher education result in robust and talented applicant pools. As a cultural anthropologist, he emphasizes diversity and inclusion throughout the search process, developing rich and diverse candidate pools and working with committees to ensure equitable evaluation and fair search processes. He is committed to the success of each search and works closely with committees and institutional leadership to find the best candidate for the institution’s advancement through active recruiting, well-constructed interviews, and deep and thorough vetting. He is professionally proud that many of his partner institutions have asked him to assist in additional searches owing to rich candidate pools and successful appointees.