TowerHunter Tapped by UMOM New Day Centers to Find New CEO

May 6, 2020 – Economic and community development organizations continue to turn to executive search firms to find new leaders. Recently, Phoenix, AZ-headquartered executive search firm TowerHunter was selected by UMOM New Day Centers to lead a national search for a new chief executive officer.

UMOM New Day Centers is Arizona’s largest provider of services for individuals and families experiencing homelessness. Darlene Newsom, the organization’s current CEO, recently announced that she will be stepping down at the end of the year.

The search engagement will be led by TowerHunter partners Patricia Buckley, Cindy Chandler and Scott Smith.


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The incoming CEO will assume leadership of a talented staff and committed volunteers that has been led through tremendous change and growth over the last 18 years by the retiring incumbent leader, said TowerHunter. The chosen candidate will have the ability to lead the creation of a new strategic plan that will focus on continued growth, increasing the funding and donor base, nurturing existing relationships and creating new revenue-production partnerships. The individual will also be responsible for the overall vision and leadership of the organization, carrying out UMOM’s mission to prevent and end homelessness with a passion for serving others.

UMOM, founded in 1964, serves over 8,500 people annually. The non-profit leverages its programs spanning coordinated entry, shelter, housing and supportive services to holistically serve the most vulnerable individuals and families in a coordinated and efficient manner. Funding for the organization comes from private philanthropy, foundation and government grants, and social enterprise ventures.

Veteran Recruiters

TowerHunter, founded in 2002, is a national executive search firm that specializes in finding executive leaders in various verticals, including healthcare, insurance, higher education, financial services, as well as the non-profit sector. Its extensive work in the non-profit sector includes search assignments for public charities, foundations, social advocacy groups and trade organizations.

TowerHunter’s combined search, consulting and business experience includes assignments for such organizations as American Express, American Red Cross, Amerisafe, CopperPoint Mutual Insurance, GE, HonorHealth, Mayo Clinic, Scripps Health and WageWorks. The firm has specialized expertise in healthcare, technology, financial services, manufacturing, lean/six sigma and human resources.

Ms. Buckley brings over 20 years of search experience as well as her prior corporate recruitment and human resources background to all her searches. Her industry specialties include healthcare, higher education, financial services and non-profit. She is described as hands-on with her clients and the firm’s recruiting teams in order to identify strong talent for placement with her clients. Ms. Buckley has experience working within a wide range of industries, filling positions at all levels up to and including the C-suite.

Ms. Chandler is healthcare practice co-leader for TowerHunter, serving clients in the healthcare and non-profit sectors. For over 25 years, she has dedicated her work to helping clients evaluate talent and culture, and recruit and build effective boards of directors and high performing leadership teams. She is known for placing diverse, culturally competent executives. Ms. Chandler and her teams have led more than 1000 assignments, often building complete teams or departments.

Mr. Smith has over 20 years of experience in corporate America and the executive search field. He has led high-profile searches for CEOs, presidents, COOs, general managers and vice presidents in the high-tech, health insurance, financial services and bio-medical arenas under difficult timeframes and intense public scrutiny. As one of the managing partners and founders of TowerHunter, Mr. Smith’s hands-on experience implementing Lean/Six Sigma has been critical to clients who require searches with a continuous improvement focus.

Searches for Housing Authorities

Here’s a look at a few recent searches for housing authorities from the Hunt Scanlon Media newswire archives:

Chicago-based executive recruitment firm Comhar Partners has placed Ralph Gaines as the new chief executive officer of Embrace Living Communities, an Oak Brook, IL-based non-profit which owns and operates housing communities for seniors and people with special housing needs in Illinois, Missouri and Florida. Managing director James O’Malley along with Bernard Layton and Nick Layton led the assignment for the search firm.

Dublin, Ireland-based Lansdowne Executive Search has been enlisted to find the executive director for the Housing Alliance, a collaboration of six of Ireland’s largest approved housing bodies (AHBs). Partner Sean McDonagh is leading the assignment. Reporting to the Housing Alliance chair, the executive director will be expected to take a hands-on role in establishing the Housing Alliance and ensuring it delivers on its mission, said Lansdown Executive Search.

Following a five-month search, Chris Cohen of Minneapolis-based CohenTaylor Executive Search has placed Abdi Warsame as the new CEO and executive director of the Minneapolis Public Housing Authority. He replaces Greg Russ, who left the role last year. Mr. Warsame will become the first Somali to lead a public housing agency in the nation, said Sharmarke Issa, the Minneapolis housing authority’s chair.

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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