The Hawkins Company consulting team consists of five (5) experienced professional executive search consultants all dedicated to service excellence and they bring a variety of experiences that add value to their work in delivering “best in class” executive search results to our client partners and the candidates we encounter during our recruitment process. The team is led by William Hawkins who serves as the senior project manager on all new client engagements. The other members of the team include Yonnine Hawkins Garr, Todd Hawkins, Tisa Jones, Adrienne Montgomery, and Gwendolyn Catchings-Castello.
The Hawkins Company team has over seventy-five (75) years of combined experience in researching and conducting national executive searches. They have handled assignments from routine to highly confidential and complex recruitments in both the private and public sectors, with a consistent commitment to service, professionalism, and positive results. Each assignment is staffed by a project manager and at least one lead recruiter.
Williams D. Hawkins
Early in his career, Mr. Hawkins worked for the National Economic Management Association, a small business consulting firm concentrating on minority economic development, where he rose to the position of Senior Vice President. Prior to launching The Hawkins Company in 1984, Mr. Hawkins spent eight (8) years as a senior member of the world’s largest executive search firm, Korn Ferry International. Nurtured in this multi-specialty, multi-national environment, Mr. Hawkins developed specialty-recruiting expertise in financial services, real estate, and entertainment, which has allowed his commitment to diversity and equity in the workplace to cut a wide swath through many industries.
A graduate of Howard University, Mr. Hawkins has spoken extensively on recruiting and human resources issues all over the country and has counseled leaders in both industry and government on career transitioning and talent management. He holds memberships in numerous community, business, and professional organizations.
Yonnine Hawkins Garr
Affiliated with The Hawkins Company since 2013, Yonnine Hawkins Garr serves as a Vice President for the firm. Ms. Garr began her career in the mortgage banking and finance industry, becoming a skilled real estate commercial and residential lender, eventually working in real estate development, construction, as well as real estate asset management. Her background makes Ms. Garr uniquely qualified for her executive-search work which focuses on financial services, economic and community development, construction, facility management, asset management and human resources, and she has co-led many of the firm’s senior-level assignments.
A graduate of the University of California, Irvine, Ms. Garr went on to study at the University of Santa Clara School of Law, but soon found her passion for ensuring equity and diversity in both the public and private sectors took precedence over her interest in the study of law. She has conducted recruitments for government agencies in such areas as City Management, Public Safety, Diversity Equity and Inclusion and Transportation and has worked with non-government agencies such as community development corporations (CDCs) and other nonprofits, ensuring they are able to continue the wide range of services they provide to revitalize communities that are underserved.
A dynamic public speaker, Ms. Garr often represents The Hawkins Company at industry and personal development conferences, giving talks and sitting on panels discussing Human Resources and Diversity.
A graduate of the University of California, Los Angeles, Mr. Hawkins’ career has, from its beginnings, existed at the intersection of philanthropy, politics, and entertainment. As a name partner in a social-innovation consulting firm, he has been instrumental in creating issue-based campaigns and social impact events for philanthropic organizations. This understanding of the inner workings of nonprofits makes Mr. Hawkins the natural choice to head The Hawkins Company’s nonprofit practice and the firm’s Board Advisory Services.
Mr. Hawkins has held positions on numerous boards in both Southern and Northern California including arts councils, museums, and educational organizations, chairing, and serving on several search committees for these nonprofits. He currently sits on the board of the Human Rights Campaign, the nation’s largest LGBTQ rights organization that works locally, nationally, and globally with industries and governments, providing leadership to actualize equality and representation. Mr. Hawkins is also the President of the California African American Museum, a position to which he was appointed by Governor Jerry Brown in 2014.
Mr. Hawkins is a sought-after speaker, addressing audiences nationally on issues related to diversity, equity and inclusion in the workplace and the world of business.
Managing Consultant and Director of Candidate Engagement and Assessment
Having joined The Hawkins Company in 2016, Tisa Jones is a Managing Consultant and the Director of Candidate Engagement and Assessment. Ms. Jones began her career in hospitality, managing her family’s restaurant business, overseeing human resources, customer service, public relations, and finances. Her background makes her keenly qualified for her recruiting and research work with the firm, and she specializes in human resources, legal, finance, IT, and general management in all sectors. As such, she has played a major role on numerous successful executive search assignments while deftly managing the firm’s candidate background and reference process.
A graduate of the University of California, Berkeley with a Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies with an emphasis in Mass Communications, Psychology, and Chicano Studies, Ms. Jones is a recognized leader in Diversity and Equity executive searches as well as a strong advocate for social justice. Passionate about education and assisting people suffering from homelessness, from 2016-2018 Ms. Jones served on the inaugural junior board of the Downtown Women’s Center, a Los Angeles based organization focused exclusively on serving and empowering women experiencing homelessness and formerly unhoused women.
Gwendolyn Catchings-Castello, DBA
Dr. Catchings-Castello holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Xavier University of Louisiana, a Master’s in Business Administration from the University of Southern Mississippi, and a Doctorate in Business Administration (Management/Organizational Behavior/Marketing) from Nova Southeastern University (Florida). In addition, she holds a Professional in Human Resources (PHR) certification and is a graduate of Coach University. Dr. Catchings-Castello is a retired Assistant Professor of Marketing and Management at Jackson State University, and a member of numerous professional associations, including the American Marketing Association, Society of Human Resources Management, Society for Advancement of Management, National Black MBA Association (Life Member), National Society of Hispanic MBAs and International Coach Federation. Dr. Catchings-Castello is also an Executive Coach (focusing on personal, professional, and organizational development), author, public speaker, and workshop presenter.
In her role as Search Consultant with The Hawkins Company, Adrienne Montgomery marries dynamic leadership with warmth, knowledge, and passion, ensuring both client and candidate goals are aligned, synchronized, and achieved. With over 25 years of experience in sales, consulting, and business strategy, Ms. Montgomery is also the perfect choice to help expand and scale the firm’s market presence, creating more opportunities while safeguarding its commitment to the increase of equity and diversity in executive roles.
With a Master of Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Phoenix, Ms. Montgomery’s financial savvy and business acumen enable her to develop key relationships with Fortune 100 and Fortune 500 executives in order to solve their most critical business and workforce needs. Ms. Montgomery also thrives in the nonprofit arena, leveraging her creativity to form innovative alliances and partnerships between community leaders, corporate executives, and municipal experts. These strengths coupled with her robust background in candidate assessments, has made Ms. Montgomery integral to many of The Hawkins Company’s search assignments for CFO and CEO roles and instrumental in executive placements in nonprofit, healthcare, and government organizations.
Ms. Montgomery’s expertise and commitment to equity play a vital role in her personal life as well. She has served as a Board Member on the National Diversity Council, Los Angeles Chapter, is the former Co-Chair of the Diversity Committee at the Country School in Valley Village and has held the title of Youth of the Year Judge with the Boys and Girls Club of America. Currently, Ms. Montgomery is developing a nonprofit that provides pajamas to prematurely birthed babies in hospitals around the country.