Scion Executive Search Seeking Executive Director for Hill Country Conservancy

December 3, 2019 – Austin, TX-based Hill Country Conservancy (HCC) has announced that founder and CEO George Cofer will retire from the organization next April. The organization has turned to non-profit sector specialists Scion Executive Search to find its next leader. Elissa Dumiak, senior executive recruiter, and Isaac Schild, managing partner, are leading the assignment for the search firm.

Mr. Cofer’s tenure with HCC includes founding the non-profit in 1999 and leading its dramatic growth and success over the past 20 years.

HCC seeks a dynamic and entrepreneurial CEO who will lead the organization, expand its programs and impact and engage the community, and lead efforts to establish resources for its programs and expansions, said Scion Executive Search. The non-profit also expects its new leader to build organizational awareness, and lead strategic planning and program creation efforts, to achieve maximum impact and ensure a stable and sustainable financial future for the organization.

Reporting directly to the board of directors, the CEO will be charged with adeptly representing the organization to partners, landowners, as well as government and community organizational partners, said the search firm. The CEO will also be responsible for fostering the organizational scope and impact by proactively identifying new opportunities and avenues to support strategic growth.

Job Qualifications

Responsibilities will involve organizational leadership, board relations, staff management and mentorship, strategic planning, financial oversight, fundraising and partnerships, and community engagement and public speaking.

Minimum qualifications include a true passion for the mission of Hill Country Conservancy as well as interest in land conservation and leading an organization that is dramatically impacting Austin and the greater Hill Country region, said Scion Executive Search. Candidates should have seven to 10-plus years of experience as a “visionary, resourceful and transparent leader” of a progressive organization. The ability to meaningfully connect and engage diverse groups of people in both urban and rural communities while representing the work and mission of HCC is also essential.

Prior successful experience working directly with and/or reporting to a board of directors is required. Prospects should have a history with successful management of a dynamic, multi-program organization along with a strong understanding of what it takes to maximize program effectiveness, maintain deliverable quality and optimize resources. A four-year degree from an accredited university is required.

Preserving National Resources

Scion Executive Search said that exceptional business acumen with experience in making sound and educated business decisions is also a key qualification. Candidates must have the ability to establish and maintain positive partnerships. Change management experience with a proven track record of professional success as a business or non-profit leader growing organizational capacity is further expected.

Hill Country Conservancy is dedicated to the preservation of vital natural resources through conservation, community collaboration and engagement for the Texas Hill Country, greater Austin and beyond. The non-profit was initially formed to strategically preserve large tracts of open space that conserve critical water features, preserve outdoor recreation opportunities, and help maintain the Hill Country’s unique quality of life. HCC is a tax-exempt land trust. As a leading and highly respected organization, Hill Country Conservancy protects large strategic tracts of open space that conserve critical water features and wildlife habitat; provides much needed recreational access to nature via the Violet Crown Trail; and promotes a conservation ethic by cultivating awareness and transforming community.


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Scion Executive Search, founded in 2006, conducts searches for non-profit clients that range from large foundations, universities and government employers, to social services and art organizations. Headquartered in San Francisco, the firm has regional offices in New York; Chicago; Portland, OR; Seattle; Dallas; Denver; and Charlotte, NC.

Respected Recruiters

The firm counts among its clients: Make-a-Wish America, Silicon Valley Community Foundation, the American Lung Association, the Native Arts and Cultures Foundation, Ronald McDonald House Charities and the Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights, among others

Ms. Dumiak is a specialist for executive talent searches within the national non-profit sector. Working from Scion Executive Search’s Portland metro area office, she leads competitive searches for a variety of prestigious non-profit organizations, foundations and educational institutions. Before she became involved with executive search, Ms. Dumiak was a real estate Broker in North Carolina and South Carolina, managing regional office, medical and retail REIT assets.

Mr. Schild is an established executive search expert in the non-profit sector. As an national non-profit search consultant, speaker, non-profit board member, and organizational development consultant, he is committed to bettering communities and inspiring effective non-profit organizational management and best practices. Over the past 20, Mr. Schild has successfully led over 500 executive searches for a variety of national prestigious non-profit organizations, foundations and educational institutions.

Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; and Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor  – Hunt Scanlon Media

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