James Abruzzo: Executive Search Consultant, North America

Get in Touch

vCard LinkedIn

James Abruzzo

James Abruzzo serves as managing partner of the global Nonprofit Practice, based in the firm’s New York, NY office. Read more >

James Abruzzo serves as managing partner of the global Nonprofit Practice, based in the firm’s New York, NY office. 

DHR International is one of the largest US retained executive search firms and, with 50 offices world-wide, among the largest global retained firms.  With more than 30 years of experience as an executive search consultant to nonprofit organizations, James' clients include large human service organizations; universities; arts, cultural, and international relief organizations; foundations; and trade associations. In addition to his experience as a retained search consultant, he is a trained management consultant and is recognized for his work with nonprofit boards on succession planning and executive compensation. In addition to leading retained searches, he is responsible for recruiting partners and for developing intellectual capital and representing the firm at industry forums.

James is co-founder of The Institute for Ethical Leadership at Rutgers Business School. This center hosts symposia and workshops for nonprofit leaders, operates a certificate program in nonprofit leadership, provides consulting to nonprofit organizations, and conducts research on critical nonprofit issues. Until his retirement from the Institute in December 2017, James also served on the faculty of the Rutgers Business School. From 1985 to 1990, James served on the graduate faculty of Columbia University and continues to lecture frequently at other major business schools in the U.S. and abroad. He is quoted frequently in industry publications like the Chronicle of Philanthropy, the Nonprofit Times, the Art Newspaper, and has been interviewed on All Things Considered and NPR’s Morning Edition.

James serves on the board of the Saul Steinberg Foundation and the Global Board of the Netherlands Dance Theater. From 1997 to  2015 he served on the board of trustees for the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre Foundation. James holds a Masters and BA from Brooklyn College and a MS from Queens College. < Read less



New York | North America
February 2020 | White Papers

2020 Nonprofit Forecast

It’s the turn of a new decade, and several social, technological, economic and political forces promise to shape the future of the nonprofit sector. Some are already in play – or have been for some time – and are already challenging nonprofit organizations. They have the potential to fundamentally transform the sector. I’ve outlined eight predictions here; a convergence of these factors will alter the landscape, necessitating a major shift in the way nonprofit organizations operate. More >

April 2019 | Hunt Scanlon Media

DHR International Places Top Leaders for Three Arts and Cultural Groups

Executive recruitment firm DHR International has recently placed top leaders at three major arts and cultural institutions: Onassis Foundation USA, the Tennessee Performing Arts Center and the Sag Harbor Cinema Arts Center. James Abruzzo, managing partner of the firm’s global non-profit practice, led the assignments. More >

July 2018 | Hunt Scanlon Media

DHR International Lands New Leader for the Miami City Ballet

James Abruzzo, managing partner of DHR’s global non-profit recruiting practice, discusses the search as well as recruiting top executives for performing arts organizations. It’s another exclusive! More >

February 2018 | Hunt Scanlon

DHR International Recruits Artistic Director for the Brooklyn Academy of Music

DHR International has placed David Binder as the artistic director of the Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM). He succeeds long-time executive producer Joseph V. Melillo, who will step down at the end of the year. James Abruzzo, managing partner of DHR’s global non-profit recruiting practice, led the search. More >

May 2017 | Adventure Science Center

Adventure Science Center Announces Steve Hinkley as CEO

The Board of Trustees of Adventure Science Center today announced Steve Hinkley, has been appointed President and Chief Executive Officer. Mr. Hinkley was most recently the President and CEO of MOXI, The Wolf Museum of Exploration + Innovation in Santa Barbara, California. He will replace acting CEO, Tina Brown, who will resume her role as Director of Operations and Exhibits. More >

June 2016 | White Papers

Nonprofit CEO Succession Planning

Insuring outstanding management leadership is arguably the single most important responsibility of the nonprofit board. The CEO, more than any other person or group, manages the financial affairs and shapes the programmatic vision that keeps the organization solvent, accessible and relevant. More >

April 2016 | White Papers

Leading the 21st Century Zoo and Aquarium

Recruiting and retaining a President is the major challenge facing the board of a zoo or aquarium. There are many factors that make the challenge even greater compared to a search for C-level executives in more traditional businesses; the zoo or aquarium board is responsible not only for the considerable physical assets and the health of the collection, it must also be concerned about sustaining the institution and insuring that the zoo remains accessible and relevant to the entire community. It must be remembered that the director is their representative guardian of the collection and is responsible for insuring that, ultimately, the zoo exists for the greater good. More >

June 2015 | Artnet News

Museum of Modern Art Reveals Glenn Lowry's Whopping $2.1 Million Pay Amid Staff Protest Over Benefit Cuts

In one of the richest payouts for a U.S. museum executive, Museum of Modern Art Director Glenn Lowry earned $2.1 million in salary, bonus, and benefits in 2013. More >

May 2014 | Big Think

Art and Ethics

"Good Artists Copy. Great Artists Steal.” Pablo Picasso said that. Or did he? Steve Jobs seemed to think so. In 1988, the Sydney Morning Herald quoted Jobs as using Picasso's line for inspiration while developing Macintosh. But further digging finds variations of the quote attributed to Igor Stravinsky, William Faulkner, and The Gentleman’s Magazine of 1892, among others. It's certainly ironic that this quote has been “stolen” by so many over the years. Who should it rightly be attributed to? More >

March 2014 | Artnet News

Kings of Compensation: How the Metropolitan Museum of Art Rewards its Own

James Abruzzo, executive vice president and managing director of the nonprofit practice, weighs in on the compensation structure of big cultural organizations. More >

December 2013 | White Papers

Selecting the Ideal Museum Director

Selecting the ideal director is the most important responsibility of the museum board. The best directors strengthen the institution, motivate the staff, energize the collections, encourage the board and change the community. The wrong choice is usually evident shortly after the director begins but ends after a year or two of angst, board disaffection, staff defection and loss of attendance and funding. More >

November 2013 | White Papers

Negotiating the Nonprofit CEO Contract

The nonprofit board’s most important decision is hiring or extending the contract of the CEO. And for the prospective or sitting CEO, there is no more important decision than either accepting the position or extending its term. More >