ABOUT FUNK ASSOCIATES

At Funk Associates, excellence in academic leadership recruitment is more than a service—it's our legacy. For decades, we've been the trusted partner for leading colleges and universities across the country, dedicated to identifying and securing the most visionary Presidents, Vice Presidents, and Deans to steer institutions towards increasing success.

Our journey began with a simple mission: to match exceptional talent with institutions poised for transformative growth. Over the years, we've honed our craft, refining our approach to meet the evolving needs of higher education. Through dedication, diligence, and a deep understanding of the academic landscape, we've earned a reputation for delivering unparalleled results.

At Funk Associates, our success is built on relationships. We take the time to truly understand the unique culture, values, and aspirations of each institution we serve. Whether it's a prestigious Ivy League university or a burgeoning liberal arts college, we approach every search with the same level of care and commitment.
What sets us apart is our unwavering focus on quality over quantity. We eschew the one-size-fits-all approach in favor of tailored solutions that prioritize long-term success. Our extensive network of academic leaders spans the globe, allowing us to cast a wide net while maintaining a keen eye for the perfect fit.

But perhaps what truly distinguishes Funk Associates is our passion for higher education. We believe in the transformative power of academia to shape minds, inspire innovation, and drive societal progress. That's why we're proud to play a part in ensuring that the leaders of tomorrow have the guidance and support they need to succeed.

As we look towards the future, our commitment remains steadfast. We will continue to uphold the values of integrity, excellence, and inclusivity that have defined us for generations.

Together with our partners in academia, we will forge new paths, break down barriers, and empower institutions to reach new heights of success.

If you’re looking for a partner to help identify impactful leadership for your institution, please reach out; we stand ready to serve your unique needs.

Our Leadership Team

Willie Funk is the Managing Vice President of the firm and holds an undergraduate degree from Emory University and a law degree from SMU’s Dedman Law School. He has an extensive background recruiting a lengthy list of Presidents, Provosts and Deans and has recently completed searches at Clemson University, University of California – Santa Cruz, University of South Carolina, TCU, Old Dominion University, College of Charleston, University of Kansas, and Radford University, among many others. Willie is known for his conscientious and caring approach to the search process and clients point to his 24/7 availability to communicate with the Search Committee/Board.
Funk and Associates ABOUT Willie Funk
Krisha Creal is the firm’s Chief of Staff and has handled the administrative and scheduling aspects of the firm’s President and Chancellor searches. She is responsible for our password-protected ‘Client Center’ that will provide the Search Committee with materials on all active candidates and continually updated logs. She will assist with the coordination of Search Committee meetings on our consultants’ behalf and will work with candidates to schedule visits, obtain directed references, and coordinate lexis/nexis/google background checks on “short list” candidates. Mrs. Creal has worked with Bill Funk for 25 years, first at Korn/Ferry International and at R. William Funk  Associates for the past 16 years.
Funk and Associates ABOUT Krisha Creal
R. William ‘Bill’ Funk, our Founder and President, is the best known and most widely respected search consultant serving higher education. He has been called the “guru of higher education recruiting” by The Chronicle of Higher Education and is listed as one of the 200 best executive recruiters in the world in The Global 200 Executive Recruiters: An Essential Guide to the Best Recruiters in the United States, Europe, Asia, and Latin America (Jossey-Bass, Inc.).

 …providing leadership to a college or university is an honor and sacred responsibility.”
Funk and Associates ABOUT Bill Funk

the process

We do not believe in a “formula” approach to searches. Each institution is different and there may be traditions and precedents that need to be honored when organizing and executing the search process.
The first essential step is for us to meet with the hiring authority and Search Committee to gain an in-depth understanding of the career experiences, personal attributes, managerial, and administrative philosophies the President, Provost, Board, and university seek in candidates.
This discussion — together with frequent, ongoing communication and ready availability to the Search Committee — provides the foundation for a successful search.
research
Obtain encompassing information about each position you are seeking to fill.
read more
record keeping
Work with you to assure that acknowledgment letters and other correspondence to applicants, nominators, and nominees are handled expeditiously.
read more
review meetings
After initial screening and outreach activities, meet with the client/committee to review candidate files to reach a workable panel of approximately 10 candidates.
read more
verify educational credentials
Before the Search Committee meets any candidate in person, we will have verified all educational degrees.
read more
facilitating your interviews
Schedule interview visits with candidates according to your availability.
read more
final referencing choice
For the one to four ‘final’ candidates, we typically coordinate the obtaining of a credit/financial background check and a litigation background check.
read more

ASSISTANCE IN OFFER, ACCEPTANCE, AND PRE-EMPLOYMENT PROCESS

Our consultants will work with the Board/President/Provost to negotiate with the selected candidate. We will have obtained appropriate compensation information, trailing spouse/partner issues, et. al., from the candidate and will share that information with you and develop an approach to the selectee that will best assure acceptance.
Working with the University’s Communications and Public Relations groups, we will assist in preparing the press release and shape the possible press conference to announce/introduce the selectee.
voices of leadership with bill funk

PODCASTS

Episode 7 Interview with Barry Munitz

Episode 7
Barry Munitz

Today, our listeners are in for a special treat. Our guest is an icon in higher education and is widely regarded as one of the most thoughtful and sage higher education leaders of his generation. Barry Munitz is Chancellor Emeritus of the California State University System and retired President and CEO of the J.Paul Getty Trust.

Currently, he is President and CEO of the Katzen Foundations for the Art of Teaching and for Academic Research. Barry is a font of knowledge about the issues intrinsic to higher education, and we are fortunate that he has agreed to spend time with us this afternoon.

Tags: #barrymunitz

Our Principles and Philosophy

Your searches are important to us! We treat each of our assignments with special care and attention and never undertake directly similar searches at the same time to avoid any conflicts of interest. You can be sure we are presenting the best candidates available - not those rejected by other clients

Our Relationship

As facilitator of the search process, we view our relationship with you as a partnership. While we expect to enhance the pool of candidates and provide our best counsel throughout the process, we recognize that decisions regarding selection of short list and final candidates reside solely with you. We believe that our record of successfully completed searches reflects our ability to engender consensus through constructive interaction with the committees with which we have worked.

Our Commitment

Ours is not a commodity business, rather we are a national firm that only conducts searches in the higher education world and only at the highest levels. We undertake only those searches where we have significant experience and which we feel confident we can successfully complete for our clients.

Our Principles and Philosophy

Your searches are important to us! We treat each of our assignments with special care and attention and never undertake directly similar searches at the same time to avoid any conflicts of interest. You can be sure we are presenting the best candidates available - not those rejected by other clients

Our Relationship

As facilitator of the search process, we view our relationship with you as a partnership. While we expect to enhance the pool of candidates and provide our best counsel throughout the process, we recognize that decisions regarding selection of short list and final candidates reside solely with you. We believe that our record of successfully completed searches reflects our ability to engender consensus through constructive interaction with the committees with which we have worked.

Our Commitment

Ours is not a commodity business, rather we are a national firm that only conducts searches in the higher education world and only at the highest levels. We undertake only those searches where we have significant experience and which we feel confident we can successfully complete for our clients.

COMMITTMENT TO DEI

We are dedicated to the values DEI represents and feel that our search results reflect our commitment.

55

56%

#1

We have broken the color and/or gender line in President/Chancellor searches alone at nearly 55 institutions across the country.
Fifty-six percent of all of our placements at the President, Chancellor, Provost, and Dean levels over the past six years have been women or individuals of color.
The American Council on Education's Women's Network has recognized our team for recruiting women into senior level positions in higher education with its"Annual Network Leadership Award."

Learn how our DEI values represents and feel that our search results reflect our commitment.

contact us