Howard Fischer, Founder, President and CEO
Howard Fischer is the Founder and President of Howard Fischer Associates, one of the country's leading executive search firms with a national reach and a reputation for helping clients attract outstanding leaders. The firm has offices in Philadelphia, Silicon Valley, and Boston.
For 35 years, Howard has consulted with CEO's, Boards of Directors, and Senior Executives on the process of identifying, evaluating, and attracting leaders. Clients range from Fortune 100 companies like Comcast and Viacom to high-tech startups and mid-sized companies such as Wawa, Penn Mutual Life Insurance, and SES Americom to name a few in the area. HFA has completed over 2,500 leadership assignments, ranging from CEO's to VP's and Board member searches.
Howard was the founding President of the NACD - National Association of Corporate Directors - Philadelphia Chapter. He has written numerous articles on Executive and Outside Director Search. He has a specialty in helping Boards analyze their current make-up and strategically add new Directors.
Howard created and moderated the "CEO Leadership Forum" series in which he has interviewed more than 20 CEO's from a wide variety of industries, on the topic of leadership. The most recent CEO Leadership Forum featured Brian Roberts and Steve Burke, CEO and President respectively of Comcast.
Adam Fischer, Managing Partner
Adam Fischer is Managing Partner of Howard Fischer Associates. Under his direction and leadership, HFA has established itself as one of the top tier technology search firms in the country. Adam executes searches for Board of Directors, CEOs and other senior level positions, specializing in Digital Media, Enterprise Software, and Networking industries. Adam's consultative style and results-oriented approach have resulted in long-term partnerships with many public and private companies. Since 1994 Adam has managed over 500 top-level executive searches. The clients range in size from emerging growth businesses to the Fortune 500. He also led the geographic expansion for the firm, building offices in Boston and the Silicon Valley, where he manages the day to day operations. Adam recently served on the Board of Big Brothers Big Sisters Southeastern Pennsylvania for ten years. Adam is a graduate of the University of Hartford, where he received a Bachelor of Arts degree.
Jeff DiSandro, Partner - Boston
Jeff focuses on CEO and SVP/VP level searches for emerging technology companies with top-tier Venture and Private Equity firms. His areas of expertise include Internet (content, media, mobile and advertising), software (application, infrastructure and network), telecommunications (Wireless, Wireline, Cable) and components (optical and semiconductor.)
Prior to joining HFA in 2001, Jeff served as a Partner with Kiradjieff & Goode (K&G), a boutique executive search firm in Boston, where he lead senior level searches for High Technology, Health Care, and Financial Services clients.
As Vice President of Multinational Commercial Lending at Bank Hapoalim, Jeff managed a $220 million corporate loan portfolio and provided national and multinational financing for corporate borrowers across various industries.
His background enables him to assess each client’s leadership needs from a business perspective. Jeff earned a BS in Business from Colby College.
Drew Hoffman, Partner – Silicon Valley
Drew focuses on CEO and senior level executive searches within all market segments of HFA's expertise, working with venture-backed startups as well as established public companies.
Prior to joining the firm in 2006, Drew had been both a candidate and client of HFA.
He was a Venture Partner at TPG Ventures where he served as interim CEO of two portfolio companies, Cloudshield Technologies and GreenBorder. While at Adaptec (NasdaqGM: ADPT), Drew became the Corporate Vice President & General Manager of the core storage business for the company, which contributed $700M in annual revenue.
Drew was also one of the founding technical team members at Convergent Technologies, an early workstation and server pioneer. After going public, the company grew to $400M in revenue just 5 years after its inception. When Unisys (NYSE: UIS) acquired Convergent Technologies, Drew went on to run the expanded $800M global business.
Drew began his career as a Member of the Technical Staff at Bell Northern Research and holds a BS in Electrical Engineering from the University of California, Irvine.
Charles Hubbard, Partner – San Francisco / Silicon Valley
Charles is a Partner in the San Francisco / Silicon Valley office of Howard Fischer Associates and has been with HFA for 9 years. Charles focuses on CEO and VP level executive searches across a wide array of market segments including enterprise and consumer domains working with both venture backed startups and established public companies.
Prior to becoming a retained search professional, Charles spent over 10 years selling enterprise software with market leading companies, most recently with NetSuite, selling SaaS CRM and ERP software. Prior to that he sold Enterprise Content Management solutions with Interwoven, and initially selling the WebObjects Application Server with Apple Computer. Prior to his software sales career, Charles was with Franklin Templeton Investments.
Before his Silicon Valley career, Charles studied and taught Political Science, and worked in the office of CA State Senator Bill Lockyer. He holds a BA in Political Science from California State University Sacramento.
Brad Frank, Partner - Philadelphia, Silicon Valley
Brad is a Partner in the Silicon Valley and Philadelphia offices of Howard Fischer Associates and has been with the firm for 9 years. Brad brings 20 years of hands-on industry experience to retained Executive Search. While part of the HFA team, Brad has worked on a multitude of broad functional and market, retained executive searches for Public, Private and Private Equity funded companies. His searches have included Boards of Directors, CEOs, CFOs, VPs of Marketing, Sales, Product Management, Product Marketing, Engineering, and Human Resources. Brad has recruited in industries as diverse as Consumer, eCommerce and Web 2.0 to SaaS, BI, Data Analytics and Semiconductors.
Prior to joining Howard Fischer Associates, Brad was a sales executive with a proven track record in global sales management, business development, and strategic global account management with both Solectron and Trend Technologies.
Brad received his MBA from Stanford Graduate School of Business, where he graduated as an Arjay Miller Scholar. He received his BA from Wesleyan University with honors.
Eric Ferst, Senior Principal - Philadelphia
Eric Ferst is a Senior Principal at Howard Fischer Associates based in Philadelphia. Over the last 12+ years with HFA, Eric has established himself as a partner and strategic adviser to senior executives in both public and private companies on the process of identifying, attracting and evaluating executive leaders to build successful companies.
His clients range from Fortune 50 to emerging technology companies across multiple industries (Technology, Media, Telecommunications, Consumer Services, Digital, Enterprise Technology and others). Eric has completed over 100 searches for External Board of Directors and C-Level executives in the areas of: General Management (CEO/COO/President/GM), Marketing (CMO, Marcom, Branding, Direct Marketing), Sales, Finance (CFO, FP&A, Chief Accounting Officer, M&A), IT, Engineering and Customer Service.
His broad range of clients include Comcast Corporation, Tyco International, Discovery Communications, Twitter, Rogers Communications, Vonage, AmeriGas, Sprint, Cox, Time Warner Cable, QVC, Reed Elsevier (Relx Group), ADT, Penn Mutual, Janney Montgomery Scott, SES Americom, Sojern, 1010data, Shoebuy.com, DigitalGlobe and more.
Prior to joining HFA, Eric was Vice President, Client Services at Expert Business Development LLC. He was responsible for the day to day operations including all phases of client business development, planning, implementation and management. Eric aided in the hiring and training of all company employees and was the primary architect of the company's web-hosted application and internal system structure.
Eric received a BA in Finance, Investment and Banking from the University of Wisconsin, Madison.
Girish Mirchandani, Senior Principal - Philadelphia
Girish focuses on senior level searches with companies in the SaaS, enterprise software, healthcare IT, ad-tech, IoT, and with digital media companies. He has been in the executive search industry for over 12 years having worked with a boutique firm and a mid-sized global firm prior. Girish also has operating experience with 2 startup companies.
He was President of LogiScale, a business process outsourcing company, and served as Vice President of Sales for RentPayment.com (now Yapstone), a leading web and mobile payment company.
Girish started his career in the financial services industry as an advisor with Northwestern Mutual/Baird Securities.
He received his BS in Marketing from Miami University and his MBA from Pepperdine University.
Girish recently joined a non-profit board in Chicago that is empowering young readers in the Chicago area.
Elly has been providing executive search expertise at Howard Fischer Associates, for over 20 years. Elly is a Principal in the Philadelphia office, where she has conducted numerous searches in diverse functional areas and myriad industries including Manufacturing, High Technology, Retail, Insurance, Computer, Telecommunications, and Media & Entertainment.
Her earlier business background includes 5 years with SAF Products, Inc., the American subsidiary of $1.5B French food ingredient manufacturer, Societe Industrielle Lesaffre, where she served as a Sales Executive and Northeast Regional Manager. She lived overseas for two and a half years prior to joining SAF Products.
Elly co-authored a chapter on U.S. recruitment practices in the renowned reference book, Business Opportunities in the United States, edited by Cushman and Soares. She has also served as HFA’s liaison with European affiliates.
An Honors graduate of the University of Pennsylvania with a major in French, Elly remains fluent in the language.
Kostya is a Principal in the Boston office of Howard Fischer Associates. He is part of the practice that specializes in the placements of CEOs, Presidents, Board of Directors, C level executives as well as VP's of Sales, Marketing, Product, Engineering, Operations, Business Development, Finance and HR for VC backed start-ups. He brings over 7 years executive recruiting experience to the firm.
Prior to joining HFA, Kostya worked for Forrester Research as an Account Executive where he was responsible for generating new business for the Tech Industry Client Group. Before that, he held a similar role as an Executive Recruiter at Charles Sterling Group, a boutique executive search firm in Boston with a focus on Financial Services Industry. Prior to this, Kostya was a Securities Lending and Corporate Actions Analyst with Brown Brothers Harriman. Kostya’s career began with a recruiter position in Capital Markets for Penny Lane Personnel in Moscow, Russia
Kostya holds a BA in Linguistics from Tver State University in Russia.
Michelle is a Principal with Howard Fischer Associates working in the Philadelphia office. Over the last few years, Michelle has partnered with executive leaders of both Fortune 500 companies and emerging growth companies to identify and recruit strong talent to help successfully build their companies. She has worked with clients across many industries including Telecommunications, SaaS, e-commerce, Manufacturing, Energy, Healthcare and Retail and has recruited for various functions including Finance, Marketing, IT/Engineering, Sales, HR and Operations. Michelle has also executed Board of Director searches and has focused on introducing impressive diverse talent.
Prior to joining HFA, Michelle practiced corporate bankruptcy law for over ten years at Schiff Hardin in Chicago and Ice Miller in Indianapolis. During Michelle’s legal career, she represented both corporate debtors and creditors in restructuring efforts in and outside of bankruptcy. Michelle also litigated a multitude of bankruptcy, creditors’ rights and commercial contract issues in both State and Federal courts and in the Bankruptcy courts.
Michelle earned her JD from DePaul University College of Law. She earned her BA in Business Administration and Political Science with Departmental Honors at Alma College, where she graduated cum laude.
Andy is a Principal with Howard Fischer Associates, based in the Silicon Valley Office. He focuses on retained C-Suite & VP-level searches for venture-backed start-ups across the Software & Technology sector. He brings a unique blend of agency search & recruiting leadership experience to the team..
Prior to joining the firm, Andy served as Head of Talent for Alfresco Software, where he built-out the company’s internal recruiting function from scratch, ran all of executive search, and worked with the executive team to redesign the company’s approach to identifying & assessing talent. Before Alfresco, Andy began his career in technology recruiting with CulverCareers, where he partnered with venture-backed tech companies to aid them in building out global sales, marketing, & customer success teams.
Outside of his work with HFA, Andy advises early-stage companies through Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo’s incubator program in all areas of Recruiting & Human Capital.
He holds a BS in International Management from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, and is a proud “Bay Area Native.”
Stephanie is a Consultant in the Philadelphia office of Howard Fischer Associates where she specializes in the placements of CEOs, Presidents, Board of Directors, C level executives as well as VP's of Sales, Marketing, Product, Engineering, Operations, Business Development, Finance and HR for Public, Private and Private Equity funded companies.
Prior to joining Howard Fischer Associates, Stephanie was a Senior Executive Recruiter with a contingent search firm with a proven track record conducting searches in the Finance sector, as well as for HR and IT. Additionally, she spent nine years in Pharmaceutical Clinical Research, focusing on patient recruitment and clinical trials for new cancer therapies at companies such as Novartis and PRA International.
Stephanie earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Biology and History from the University of Delaware.
Elisa is a Research Associate in the Boston office of Howard Fischer Associates. Elisa supports HFA consultants in their research across industries, with a primary focus in Venture and Private Equity backed emerging technology companies.
Prior to joining HFA, Elisa was a Research Associate at Park Square, a retained search firm in Boston.
Elisa earned her BA in Political Science from Trinity College, where she was also a member and two-time captain of the women’s soccer team.
Kathryn is a Research Associate in the Silicon Valley office of Howard Fischer Associates. Kathryn supports HFA consultants in their research across industries, with a primary focus on VC backed start-ups.
Prior to joining HFA, Kathryn spent 8 years in global Program Management roles spanning both product development and manufacturing at Motorola and Dell. Additionally, she has over 6 years of leadership experience with several non-profits.
Kathryn holds a BS in Industrial Engineering from Purdue University and an MS in Industrial and Systems Engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology.
Dennis is the Chief Financial Officer of Howard Fischer Associates and has been with the firm since 1995.
Prior to joining HFA, Dennis was with two of the largest and most successful law firms in Philadelphia. Most recently spending 5 years at White and Williams where he was the firms Controller and prior to that he worked at Drinker, Biddle & Reath as that firms Assistant Controller.
Dennis received his BS Degree in Accounting from the University of Scranton.
Mike is the Director of Technology for Howard Fischer Associates, and has been with the firm since 1996.
Prior to joining HFA, Mike held technology positions at a law firm, a healthcare agency and a manufacturing firm in the Philadelphia area.
Mike received his BA Degree in Criminal Justice from LaSalle University.