DRG Executive Search Consultants

DRG was originally founded in 1987 by David Edell and Linda Low in response to their concern about the personnel crisis in the nonprofit sector.

"Having worked in nonprofit organizations and been members of nonprofit Boards, we recognize that what search committees want is confidence in our expertise and judgment . . . and in our capability to conduct and complete top level searches. We´ve developed an approach and the resources designed to build that confidence. Our references and referrals speak volumes about the results."  - David E. Edell, President

David Edell, PresidentDavid Edell

David has dedicated his career to making a difference in the non-profit sector. Following more than a decade in several senior executive positions at UJA-Federation of New York, he co-founded the Development Resource Group (DRG) in 1987. From the start, his work with DRG has centered on high-level executive searches for leaders of mission-based organizations who affect positive change in the world.


David is known as a national leader in conducting executive searches for professionals throughout the Jewish community. He has led searches for senior executives at most of the major national organizations, including JDC, JCPA, Hillel International, Birthright Israel, NEXT and the Jewish Funders Network. He has also worked with the boards of Jewish Federations, Community Centers and Jewish Family Service agencies in communities across the country, as well as with many influential Jewish philanthropic foundations and their grantees. As with DRG’s annual client roster, more than half of David’s searches are with non-sectarian nonprofit organizations in the fields of human services, mental health, healthcare and education. Among other partnerships over the course of his career, David created a unique relationship with a national child welfare organization and with them conducted over 100 searches for the executives of their member children and family agencies.

In his role as President, David assists all of DRG’s consultants with developing innovative recruitment strategies and is always pushing his team to think differently and creatively, while sharing his strong networks and trusted expertise across the firm. David excels at guiding client conversations from the early stages – helping both volunteer leaders and professionals clearly articulate their vision about what “taking the organization to the next level” really looks like. A graduate of Boston University, David received his M.S.W. from the University of Maryland’s School of Social Work and Community Planning. He also studied at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. He has written and lectured extensively on non-profit leadership, hiring trends, professional development, and change management.

When he’s not working, David spends his time hiking, biking, kayaking, snowshoeing and skiing in Vermont and the Berkshires. He is also an avid tennis player and spends as much time as possible in his new role as a grandfather.

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David Hinsley Cheng, Managing PartnerDavid Hinsley Cheng

David brings a wealth of high-level executive search experience to his role at DRG and is a trusted resource amongst the firm’s notable client list. As managing partner, David is a central player in realizing the firm’s vision: to provide expert and ongoing counsel to organizations navigating a C-suite transition. Since joining DRG in 1995, David has worked closely with over 100 boards, professionals, search committees and human resource managers to help them smoothly navigate the search process. David’s belief is that an effective search consultant will serve an organization best by not just developing the best possible candidate pools but also by building consensus and clarity with the board about the competencies necessary for an executive to guide an organization towards its mission.

While he has diverse experience across all areas of the nonprofit sector, including human services, associations, and advocacy organizations, David’s practice has centered on working with the boards of high-profile voluntary health organizations and hospital foundations. Among the recent successful searches David has led are chief positions at Autism Speaks, American Parkinson’s Disease Association, Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, Michael Reese Health Trust, Nationwide Children’s Hospital, Hebrew SeniorLife, Legal Services-NYC, American Institute for Economic Research, and American Youth Soccer Organization.

Prior to joining DRG, David served as a nonprofit executive and board member to arts organizations such as Artists Space, H.T. Dance Company, and The Center for Modern Dance Education. David is a TAAC Fellowship recipient for Talented Arts Managers and served as a panelist for the New York State Council for the Arts Dance Partnership Program. He has also been an invited speaker at conferences for the Association for Fundraising Professionals, the New York University School of Continuing and Professional Studies, the Heyman Center for Philanthropy and Fundraising, and the Center for Nonprofit Management at Baruch College.

David holds academic degrees in both economics and political science from New York University.

David lives in Connecticut with his wife, a veterinarian, two children, and a menagerie of dogs (4), cats (2), and rabbits (2). A competitive year-round kayaker and rower who lives for the water, David is often found in his surfski and ICF K1 sprint kayaks or single scull.

Contact via email or LinkedIn