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RFP: Executive Search Firm

Request for Proposals
Executive Director of Beaufort Housing Authority
Issued February 2, 2024
Proposals due 3 PM EST February 16, 2024
Email Beaufort Housing Authority

Summary: Beaufort Housing Authority (BHA) is issuing this Request for Proposals for the services of an Executive Search Firm (ESF) to assist in the recruitment of an Executive Director (ED) with HUD experience. The ESF shall assist the BHA's Board of Commissioners in attracting, interviewing, and hiring an Executive Director. Services include finalizing the position description, developing a recruitment plan, enacting the Executive Director hiring process, conducting a nationwide search, vetting, and presenting qualified candidates, assisting with final selection criteria, and providing guidance for the offer. The ESF will coordinate its efforts with the BHA's Board of Commissioners.

The Authority reserves the right, during the evaluation process, when and where it may serve its best interests, to request additional information or clarifications from proposers, or to allow corrections of errors or omissions at the sole discretion of the Authority. The Authority reserves the right to request oral presentations by the responding firms as part of the evaluation process.

All matters and issues related to this RFP and any contract resulting from this RFP shall be governed by the regulations included in 24 C.F.R. 85.36, the procurement principles set forth in the HUD Handbook on Procurement for Public Housing Agencies 7460.8, applicable Federal, State, and local laws, and the Authority's Procurement Policy.

Background: The Beaufort Housing Authority provides affordable housing to low-and moderate-income individuals and families, serving Beaufort County, South Carolina which includes the following municipalities: City of Beaufort, Town of Port Royal, Town of Bluffton, Town of Okatie, and Town of Hilton Head. The Authority is a public body that is Quasi-Governmental and was created in 1968 in accordance with state law.

The Authority administers public and affordable housing programs to serve eligible individuals and families within Beaufort County. The Authority is governed by a seven (7)-member Board of Commissioners ("Board"). The Commissioners are appointed by the Beaufort City Council and the Mayor and exercise all powers granted to the Authority pursuant to government statutes.

The Board of Commissioners is currently seeking an Executive Director with exceptional leadership and strategic vision. The Executive Director is charged with executing BHA's strategic plan and has the overall responsibility to manage the organization, including building lasting relationships with key stakeholders, developing, and enacting a plan to reposition BHA in the best possible way to align with HUD's vision for Housing Authorities, and ensuring exceptional programming to serve communities across Beaufort County. The Executive Director is BHA's public face and is responsible for fostering external relationships with governmental and community partners, and elected officials.

Beaufort Housing Authority is an $8 million dollar non-profit organization, and as a recipient and sub-recipient of funding awarded by the U. S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the Authority owns and operates 293 public housing dwelling units as follows: Sandalwood Terrace (80 units), Marsh Pointe (30 units), Oakhill Terrace (39 units), Yemassee Heights (50 units), and 43 scattered sites and some vacant land in Beaufort County. Additionally, the Authority administers Public Housing, NSP, Section-8 Vouchers under the Housing Choice Voucher Programs.

The Lowcountry Housing & Redevelopment Corporation ("LHRC") is an affiliated entity of the Authority.

The Executive Director reports to BHA's Board of Commissioners. BHA's main office is located at 1009 Prince Street, Beaufort, SC, and most staff are based at this location.

BHA is in a restructuring and growth stage organizationally. The Board of Commissioners is seeking an individual who can think and plan strategically, to build community with a diverse set of stakeholders, balance multiple competing priorities, is comfortable with continual change, and who demonstrates good judgment about which opportunities to pursue.

The organization currently has an Interim Executive Director, and the Board of Commissioners is looking to fill the role with the right candidate immediately. The Board of Commissioners seeks to identify a new Executive Director immediately with a deadline no later than April 15, 2024.

Services Requested: 

  • In collaboration with the BHA Board of Commissioners, finalize a job description suitable for a nationwide search that is consistent with the BHA Executive Directors Succession Plan and Hiring Process (documents available upon request) as well as the future needs of the organization.
  • Coordinate with the BHA Board of Commissioners and/or designee throughout the process.
  • Conduct a nationwide search to identify a diverse pool of highly qualified individuals to serve as the BHA's Executive Director.
  • In coordination with the BHA's Board of Commissioners, develop candidate evaluation criteria.
  • Vet qualified candidates to identify those both willing and most worthy of consideration; refer those candidates to the Board of Commissioners.
  • Inform each candidate in the final selection that their names will be shared with the BHA's Board of Commissioners.
  • Assist in developing an offer for the most qualified candidate, to include benefits and terms of employment. The executive offer will be evaluated by the BHA's Board of Commissioners as part of the final selection process. It is expected that the Executive Director will serve a provisional 6-month term, subject to extension thereafter upon satisfactory performance.

RFP Selection Process Timeline:

Proposals are due February 16, 2024, at 3 PM EST. Start of work should begin within seven (7) days thereafter. The Beaufort Housing Authority Board of Commissioners seeks to successfully conclude the entire search process immediately from execution of the contract (Immediately).

RFP Submission Requirements

Proposals should be no more than 15 pages, not including references, and cover the following:

  1. Organization Description: Brief history and summary of your firm and expertise, highlighting experience with non-profit organizations, HUD experience and executive roles.
  2. Recruitment Approach: Describe the process to be used to find a successful candidate for the BHA Executive Director role, including team members. Detail how you will accomplish the above scope of work (how do you build your candidate pool), including a clear delineation of the firm's responsibilities and the expectations of BHA. Include any networks to be used on behalf of this search.
  3. Deliverables: Delineate how success will be measured throughout the process.
  4. Proposed Timeline: Estimate the start and end dates for each phase of the search process.
  5. Budget: Proposed cost along with narrative description of what is included in this cost and pricing structure.
  6. Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion: Share experience, networks, and metrics recruiting diverse leaders.
  7. References: Provide two references from a similar search:
    1. An example of a successful Executive Director/CEO search, where the Executive Director/CEO has been with the organization more than three years. Please provide contact information for both the Executive Director and, if possible, the board member contact with whom the firm contracted.
    2. A recent (within the past 12 months) Executive Director/CEO placement of an individual with a BIPOC background. Please provide contact information for the Executive Director/CEO as well as the board or staff contact with whom the firm worked most closely.
  8. Any potential conflicts of interest

Proposals must be sent electronically in a single PDF file to:; Subject Line: BHA Executive Search RFP. By submitting a proposal, the firm authorizes BHA to contact references to evaluate the firm's qualifications for this project.

Evaluation Criteria: All proposals will be evaluated based on the following key criteria:

  • Performance capability-the extent to which the proposal demonstrates the firm's ability to provide the depth and breadth of experience, skills, knowledge, and creativity generally required by this project
  • Understanding of and commitment to BHA's mission, values, programs, and strategic objectives
    Demonstrated experience with similar-sized nonprofit organizations and diversity leadership placement
  • Completeness and quality of response, including clear deliverables and reasonable approach
  • Proposed cost and timeline
  • References

The proposals will be evaluated based on the following considerations:

  1. The Authority will evaluate all proposals in accordance with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development 24 CFR rules and regulations.
  2. Evaluation criteria:
    • Criteria - Point Value
    • Complete response to all required items - 20
    • Ability to provide timely, responsive, and effective services - 20
    • Experience in performing previous similar contracts for Executive Search services - 25
    • Proposed Executive Search services - 25
    • Price - Although cost will be a factor in selection, it is not the sole, or necessarily the determining factor; the Authority will select a qualified firm based on best value considering the qualifications of the Proposers; and - 10
    • Woman or Minority Business - 5

While the order of these factors does not denote relative importance, BHA acknowledges that selecting best value providers primarily requires a balanced combination of (1) reasonable rates, (2) strong experience and demonstrated expertise in providing Executive Search Services, and (3) a demonstrated commitment to diversity and inclusion through ownership or existing collaborative relationships.

Disclaimer: This RFP does not commit BHA to select any firm, award any work order, pay any costs incurred in preparing a response, or procure or contract for any services or supplies. BHA reserves the right to accept or reject any or all submittals received, cancel, or modify the RFP in part or in its entirety, or change the RFP guidelines, when it is in the best interests of the BHA to do so.