About Us

R. H. Perry & Associates (RHPA) is one of the most experienced, and most successful executive search firms in the country.

Our firm’s primary focus is to assist institutions of higher education in the identification and selection of their leadership. 

Established in 1974 by Robert H. Perry, RHPA is headquartered in Washington, DC, and our consultants maintain offices in Arizona, California, Florida, Maryland, Missouri, North Carolina, New York, Rhode Island and Virginia.

RHPA offers excellent credentials and experience in academic executive search, having successfully completed over 900 searches in its 39-year history. The firm’s higher education practice consists of senior-level executives with a well-balanced mix of college and university presidential experience and executive search expertise. RHPA conducts its search practice with two-consultant teams supported by our Communications and Due Diligence Specialists

From the composition of the institutional profile to the final meeting of the search committee, R.H. Perry consultants did a superb job supporting the search. They helped a search with a shortened timetable and off-schedule with the normal academic calendar to be successfully completed on time with very good finalists."

- David Haddad,
Wheeling Jesuit University

Distinguishing Characteristics

A “Partners Only” Approach

We are committed to highly personalized attention to, and communication with, our client institutions. The search team leader is the primary point of contact for any assignment and remains closely involved in the search process from engagement to conclusion.

Presidential Search Team Experience

Our firm has seen to completion over 200 presidential search assignments since 1993. This extensive knowledge and experience translates into a search process that is rooted in best practices, is transparent and thorough, and has clearly defined benchmarks.

Our Proprietary Candidate Database

Cultivated over 500 search assignments, RHPA’s proprietary database contains thousands of individuals who have been top candidates in our searches and whose careers we have followed. We personally contact targeted individuals to gauge their interest in the opportunity and solicit others for recommendations and nominations of potential candidates.

Commitment to Diversity

Recognizing that proactive initiatives are necessary to identify and attract candidates of diversity, RHPA has created a Diversity Task Force. This cadre, comprised of women and diversity administrators we have placed in recent years, recommends outstanding diversity prospects as well as suggesting new sourcing and identification efforts. As a result of these efforts, RHPA has an excellent track record in identifying and attracting highly qualified diversity and women candidates. Since 2001, nearly 30% of our placements have been from these groups.

Commitment to Candidates

We take pride in the communicative, timely, and respectful treatment of our candidates, nominators, and nominees. We acknowledge all nominations and applications, provide a timeline of the search process, and promptly inform non-selected candidates of their status. By treating candidates with respect and consideration, we ensure the integrity of both our firm and our client institution.

Thorough Finalist Due Diligence

We provide the most in-depth finalist due diligence in higher education executive search. We speak with given and, most importantly, non-given or off-list professional references (direct reports, peers, and supervisors) both at current and former places of employment; perform civil and criminal litigation, and publicity and public records checks; and verify terminal degrees. In addition, we offer two optional ‘extra dimension’ procedures – Home Campus Visits and Psychological Assessments – both of which are designed to enable the Board of Trustees to make a more considered judgment in its final selection process.

Community and Technical College Presidential Search

This section describes our experience