AESC Diversity Pledge

The Association of Executive Search and Leadership Consultants (AESC) is the professional association for consultants who represent exemplary standards in executive search and leadership advisory worldwide.

The AESC Diversity Pledge: CEOs Stand Against Racism, Discrimination and Social Injustice

CEOs representing leading executive search and leadership consulting firms around the world have come together to speak with one voice. As a profession, we are dedicated to strengthening leadership worldwide and believe in the power of diverse talent and inclusive cultures.

Standing in support of our Black colleagues, clients, candidates, and the entire Black community, this pledge forms the guiding principles for newly developed solutions Boyden will actively participate in as well as lead. Actions that accelerate progress for Black leaders and the Black community are a critical priority.

Represented by our CEO, Boyden formed AESC’s initial working group to develop the course of action.

Our Pledge & Our Guiding Principles


We share a commitment to combat racism, prejudice, and discrimination within our own organizations, with candidates and the clients we serve, and in our communities.

We pledge to use our collective voices and actions to help create a world that is inclusive, diverse, equitable and accessible for all.


Each CEO who signs this pledge is committing to developing and deepening actions within their own firms. Our Guiding Principles will help inform firm-based actions which will accelerate a sustainable positive impact. Actions that accelerate progress for Black leaders and the Black community will be a critical priority.


We commit to listen, engage, and learn so that we can do better both as employers and as trusted advisors. We will understand and leverage best practices to greatly enhance attracting and developing diverse talent for ourselves and our clients. We will work with our clients to identify leaders and assess them for their ability to create inclusive cultures where diverse talent thrives.


We will develop stronger and more diverse slates of candidates through robust research, outreach, and alliances. We will use our expertise to mentor diverse talent to raise their visibility and their success and will identify partnerships that allow us to engage more people, and thus have a greater impact.


We will advocate with clients to help them embrace best practices that further their diversity and inclusion efforts which, in turn, will enhance business results. We will contribute our time and our expertise to under-served communities to advance racial equity and economic empowerment and to fight for social justice.

A special thanks to the following CEOs and participating firms who formed our initial working group to develop this Pledge and Guiding Principles. We came together to leverage the strength of our profession and with a belief in the power of diverse talent and inclusive cultures.

AESC Karen Greenbaum, President and CEO
Boyden Trina Gordon, former President and CEO
Diversified Search Dale Jones, CEO
Heidrick & Struggles Krishnan Rajagopalan, President and CEO
Russell Reynolds & Associates Clarke Murphy, CEO
Spencer Stuart Ben Williams, CEO
Stanton Chase Mickey Matthews, International Chairman
WittKieffer Andrew Chastain, President & CEO

Calling all CEOs — You Can Make A Difference

To ensure that our voices are heard, and our impact is felt, AESC invites member CEOs across the world to sign on to our pledge and commit to action. The AESC will display the names of each firm that signs on to this Pledge, Guiding Principles and commits to develop and deepen actions within their own firms.



Boyden has active representatives on AESC's Diversity Leadership Councils, founded to ensure progress on the mission laid forth in the AESC Diversity Pledge. Visit AESC to learn more.

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