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Community Foundation of the Mahoning Valley

What our client has to say

Need:          Guidance in finding a new President

Service:     Executive search


The Community Foundation of the Mahoning Valley, founded in 1998, serves the citizens of Mahoning and Trumbull counties in Northeast Ohio. When its long-time president announced her retirement, the Board of Trustees retained Smith Beers Yunker to help the Search Committee develop and implement a comprehensive strategy for finding a new CEO.


When asked to comment on the quality of the services provided by Smith Beers Yunker, Search Committee Chair Phil Dennison responded, “They did an excellent job. The relationship was very congenial and cooperative. They understood our needs and were very flexible.”


Phil was especially grateful for the time the firm saved the committee. He explains, “If we had done the search ourselves, we would have had to be in contact with all the applicants. But Smith Beers Yunker did a great job narrowing down the field for us. It was very clear that they have done searches like this before, so they understood exactly what we needed.”


“After reviewing the resumes, they suggested some follow-up questions that we asked all of the applicants to answer. That was very helpful for us getting a better sense of the applicants and a way to judge the quality of their writing. He also helped us develop interview questions, which we asked all the candidates, and that helped enable us to compare the quality of their responses.”


Phil was grateful for the way the firm’s president, Jim Yunker, helped to guide the committee through choppy waters, “Jim was a helpful sounding board when challenges arose during the search. I would have a brief conversation with Jim and then with the committee. We would come up with a revised approach and then ask Jim if it made sense. Then he’d carry out the changes.”


With the search successfully concluded, Phil offers these words to others considering the services provided by the Cincinnati-based firm, “I would certainly recommend Smith Beers Yunker, but most of all, I’d recommend Jim to anybody. He was very easy to work with, he listened and then provided helpful feedback and suggested ways of doing things that were very beneficial in the process. He was not overbearing by any means, which I like. We were very pleased with the outcome of the search. When we introduced our new President to the community the feedback was very positive.”