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Opus Partners

Welcome to Opus Partners

At Opus, we serve client organizations that are in the vanguard of education, patient care, research, and culture.

When we created our company in 2003, we chose the word “Opus,” Latin for “work,” so that our name would evoke our values – values of skill, focus, and expertise, of professional commitment that creates enduring results.

The multi-dimensional images of pattern and precision on our website visualize the distinction and complexity that characterizes our clients. They also represent the alignment with our clients that we pursue in every aspect of our work.


July 2013

Opus Partners is delighted to announce several exciting milestones in our evolution as a search consultancy in higher education, academic medicine, and other sectors of the broader not-for-profit world. 2013 is a big year for us, and we are proud to update our clients, candidates, and friends on our signal accomplishments.

In May 2013, we marked the 10th anniversary of our founding, when Jim Hess and Craig Smith formed the company in Philadelphia, convinced that a “boutique” model for executive search was the best way to fulfill our standards of client service. We have grown to be five times the size we were in May 2003, while remaining true to that original vision: we are still a boutique!

2013 sees us start the third year of our Portland, OR office, where Jim is now based. Like Philadelphia, our Portland office serves clients nation-wide across all our verticals. 2013 also sees us continue to support the growth of our UK sibling firm, Cadence Partners, which we helped to found at the start of 2012. Led by former colleagues and old friends Shani Newbold and Rob McCargow, Cadence ( provides executive-search and interim-leader services to the non-profit, government, and corporate sectors. We have enjoyed collaborating with our colleagues at Cadence on several international recruitments and with them will continue to build global practices in education and healthcare.

We hope too that our new website, in its way, marks the start of our second decade: whether you appreciate its fresh, handcrafted image of pattern, flow, symmetry, variation, and dimension or its improved functionality – notably our dedicated client extranet sites – we believe the site signifies our enduring capabilities, our evolving competencies, and our commitment to transparent, objective, and rigorous work. Thank you for your interest in Opus!