September 4, 2018 – Leslie W. Stern, a retired managing director of Diversified Search, died on Aug. 29.
“Les Stern represented the best of the best in our executive search industry and as a human being who had the whole package – great husband and father, man of integrity and the highest character, a gentleman, trusted friend and man of compassion and passion for what he believed in,” said Judith von Seldeneck, the search firm’s founder and chair. “There was also no one more fun to be with! We will miss him greatly!”
“Les was an exemplary leader in our profession,” said Dale Jones, CEO of Diversified Search. “He moved clients and search firms beyond the assessment of technical skills to the critical competencies of leadership and fit. He mastered the art of matchmaking for client companies and search firms.”
A Consummate Search Professional
Leslie Stern had more than 40 years of experience in executive search. His recruiting career began when he established Stern Associates, which he led for 25 years. He merged with Ward Howell, then later joined Sullivan & Company, which was eventually acquired by Heidrick & Struggles. He then moved to Top 10 recruiter Diversified Search, where among his accomplishments he was responsible for the firm’s acquisition of BioQuest, a recruiting boutique specialist serving healthcare innovators in the life sciences market.
“Les Stern was a classic, a gentleman, a consummate search professional, a member of the old school of retained search,” said Janet Jones-Parker, managing partner of Jones-Parker & Associates. “He knew that the work of moving someone from one position to another had a mission and had to be done more than right. When executives joined his client, their lives and their families changed. The people who would report to them, their colleagues and bosses would also have their lives altered.”
“Les was authentic throughout his extensive career and many of us sought his counsel and appreciated his friendship,” said Ms. Jones-Parker. “In a world where retained search continues to struggle with the balance of technology and personal touch, let us remember that people are successfully hired because they bring something to a culture and its employees – something that is discernible only through another person’s eyes.”
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