Sheila Hennessey

Consulting Advisor

“I am inspired by the opportunity to serve as a trusted advisor to mission-driven organizations, and a champion for individuals who dedicate their careers to nonprofit service.”


BS, Earth Sciences, Stanford University

MFA, Classical Acting, The Shakespeare Theater’s Academy for Classical Acting at The George Washington University

Sheila Hennessey has placed senior executives with prominent nonprofit organizations and universities across the country as an executive search professional based in Washington, DC, southern California, and Idaho.

Sheila previously served as a Principal with Koya Leadership Partners, a national executive search and consulting firm that partners exclusively with mission-driven clients. Prior to joining Koya, Sheila was Senior Executive Search Consultant with Higher Talent, Inc., a leader among boutique executive search firms, serving nonprofit and higher education institutions nationwide. Now an independent consultant based in Idaho and southern California, she recently led the recruitment of the new CEO for the Idaho Youth Ranch, one of Idaho’s largest and most prominent nonprofits.

Sheila has recruited CEO/Executive Directors, other C-suite executives, and senior fundraising/advancement leadership for clients that include the Los Angeles County Arts Commission, LACMA, the Regional Arts and Culture Council (Portland, OR), KIPP LA Schools, the University of Southern California, Johns Hopkins University, Easter Seals, and the
Smithsonian Institution, among many others.

She began her career in management consulting with Bain & Company, moved into corporate communications and public relations with Hill & Knowlton, and served as Executive Director of the Downtown Boise Association, a nonprofit focused on urban revitalization.

As a professional actress, Sheila has appeared onstage and in national network television programs including “The Wire” and “Homicide: Life on the Street.” She served as associate producer of the documentary “Rediscovering Alexander Hamilton,” which aired nationally on PBS (and featured Lin-Manuel Miranda as he was developing his hit musical).

An active community volunteer, Sheila is a member of the board of directors of the Idaho Youth Ranch, a member and grants panelist for the Idaho Women’s Charitable Foundation, and a fundraising committee member for Boise Contemporary Theater. She previously served on the
boards of the Laguna Playhouse and the national new-play development nonprofit The Inkwell, and on the Boise City Arts Commission. She served as a panelist at the inaugural Berkshire Leadership Summit for women in theater.