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APPA President and CEO Search Enters Next Phase 

February 7, 2024

Updated February 21, 2024:

APPA’s executive committee is thrilled to announce Opus Partners as the chosen national search firm tasked with leading the search for our new President and CEO. The decision to collaborate with Opus stems from their commitment to inclusivity and dedication to fostering a diverse pool of candidates. Their pledge to work in partnership with APPA and its board distinguished them as the top national search firm.

In pursuit of an inclusive plan, Opus Partners’ approach stood out, aligning seamlessly with APPA’s commitment to fostering a community that drives results. A dedicated search team will be formed in collaboration with Opus to actively contribute to and support this pivotal process.

We express our sincere appreciation to the dedicated Board members who served on the review search team: Jim Hundrieser from NACUBO, Jessica Abbott from Wolcott Public Schools, and Steve Gilsdorf from Wayne State University. Their meticulous evaluation of more than 10 national search firms highlights APPA’s unwavering commitment to ensuring we secure the best firm for this vital role.

To ask any additional questions of the APPA Executive Committee, please email: [email protected].


Original post, February 7, 2024:

As part of the ongoing succession plan to replace longtime leader Lander Medlin, the APPA Board and its Executive Committee are moving forward with concrete steps to both elicit member input about this important process and appoint an executive search firm to market the position and recruit and screen qualifying candidates. 

APPA CEO Brochure

Medlin, APPA’s President and CEO since 1996, stepped down in early January after a cancer diagnosis. On January 10, APPA’s Board approved APPA Chief of Staff and HR Director R. Holly Judd as Interim President and CEO. The association’s new leader is expected to be announced within six months. 

Recent developments include a series of “listening sessions” in which members and other association stakeholders are able to voice their opinions about the search process and their desired attributes for APPA’s new leader. Two stakeholder sessions have already been held, and there will be sessions for the general membership on Friday, February 16 (2 pm CT / 3 pm ET) and Monday, February 19 (3 pm CT / 4 pm ET). Invitations will be emailed shortly.  APPA Board Chair Dave Irvin, who is executive director of construction at Auburn University, describes the sessions as “an excellent opportunity for collaboration, ensuring a transparent and inclusive process during this crucial leadership transition.” 

In addition, the APPA Board has reviewed the credentials of several national search firms and expects to finalize its decision very soon. A search committee will be formed to work closely with the search firm, the Board, as well as the APPA staff on evaluating candidates. Further information is forthcoming.  

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